2020: The good, the bad & what's next

Future thinking
By
Hatch Team

There’s good new and bad news. If, like many people, you’ve just about had it with the bad news, skip down to the Good News section.

The bad news

Unemployment rate: 6.2%

Underemployment rate: 11.2%

And there are 8 entry-level job seekers for every appropriate position. Factor in over-qualified applicants and that pushes that figure to 106.

Those numbers only tell half the story. Here's why:

  • People on JobKeeper are counted as employed.
  • Because of the lack of work, many people have given up looking for a job. This means they're not counted as unemployed.
  • Underemployment is on the rise as many full-time workers have had their hours cut back.

So economists say the real unemployment rate is likely about 13%. There’s a huge challenge ahead of us.

To face the challenge head-on, we need to connect future skills with industries. At the moment there’s an extensive gap between the current workforce and what’s needed for a future fit workforce. This is because employers, education providers and the Government haven’t collaborated on how to match emerging talent to the fields that are critical to a technology-enabled job market. 

As you probably have come to expect, tech-heavy roles are critical and where we see the biggest gap in supply vs demand. The Australian Computer Society’s latest Australia’s Digital Pulse report found that Australia will need 156,000 more technology workers by 2025 to keep pace with current demand. To be a digital leader, rather than a laggard, Australia will need to add over 60,000 technology workers every year to 2025, which is double the current forecast.

The good news

If there was ever a time to take stock of the labour market, it’s now. Breathe in, breathe out. Okay, are you ready for the opportunity?

Now’s the time to rethink how we hire. There’s an extraordinary opportunity to hire great talent. While the unemployment rate figures represent the brutal impact of Covid-19, it also represents a diverse talent pool from many different backgrounds, all looking for jobs. In other words:

“Think of the current job market as a sharp curve on a racetrack - one that appears only once a decade or so - this is where you can pass other companies competing for talent with you. Use this rare chance to attract stars.”
Harvard Business Review

In reality, this looks like posting a role and getting 100s of CVs back to review. But within that hundred, there’s likely some hidden gems. This might be a rare gap in their career where they’re looking for something new, or someone who’s slipped through previously if you didn’t look closely enough. 

The latter scenario is one we care deeply about solving. And it’s where the magic happens for the companies we’re working with. Just today, we received this feedback from a customer we sent a shortlist to:

“Interestingly, when I added the shortlisted candidates’ CVs into our ATS, I noticed that quite a few of them are repeat candidates, so it’s nice that their Hatch applications allowed them to stand out from the crowd, unlike their previous applications.”

Screening CVs for a couple of seconds isn’t serving you well. And if it’s a problem you have, let us help you solve it. 

To start filling the skills gap, we’ve been corralling our network and working with partners to harness the potential of technology. Technology can create more jobs than it displaces. According to economist Enrico Moretti’s future-of-work study, The New Geography of Jobs, there’s the greatest multiplier effect in the technology industry, compared to mining and manufacturing; for every job created in technology, it creates five in other industries.

We’re working with Generation Australia, AcademyXi and General Assembly to offer courses where we see demand; from web development to data analytics and cloud skills. And we’re optimistic that more employers, education providers and the Government will come to the table to calibrate the courses and skills being taught within in-demand areas, launching more people into the workforce. 

2020 has given us 3 key learnings:

  1. Operating the Hatch Exchange demonstrated that matching people to jobs based on their transferable skills and values, beyond their CVs, is relevant throughout people’s careers. 
  2. Engaging junior talent in the post-Covid rebuild is more important than ever before.
  3. Now is the time to innovate on how we hire junior talent for better outcomes. 

2021 is all about bringing these learnings to life - so watch this space!

Hatch Team

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