New month, new poll. This time I’m asking whether you’re planning on hiring new staff over the next few months. In previous posts I have talked about the need for our sector to become an employment beacon among the other sectors that are being hammered by the pandemic, and that demand for our products at current levels could last at least another year as other routes for spending disposable income by the general public look blocked for a while.
But how many of us are actually on the path to hire more people?
Unlocking the pressure
We know demand is very high right now. Perhaps the highest in at least a decade. The pressure this has created is being compounded by the fact that COVID-19 safety measures on factory floors mean that suppliers are struggling to operate at fuller productivity levels. That being said, even if we could have full factory floors I still think we’d be creaking. Our industry has coasted along at a certain level for the past ten years or so, then this explosion of business out of nowhere hits. This would have taken us aback whether we were at full staff levels or not.
Personally, I think night shifts might be the way to go. If we can’t have the full workforce on the floor at any one time, perhaps its time to look more at night shifts and look at producing more per day that way.
Night shifts aside, we need more people working in whatever capacity they can to help release the pressure many are feeling right now. Looking at the wider picture, we need people across the supply chain. Sales, order processing, deliveries, fabrication. With the projects I am involved with I am speaking with a lot of people right now in various parts of the supply chain and one theme is becoming very clear and obvious and that is that plenty of people are feeling the pressure right now. Stress levels seem to be high. One or two seem to be struggling. As I mentioned on social media over the weekend, no amount of sales and business is worth risking our mental health.
Not only would hiring more workers allow the sector to process more work, but it would help to reduce stress and pressure on the existing workforce, which can only be a good thing from a mental health perspective. There’s a lot of willing people out there ready to work after being made redundant from other sectors. It seems to me that everyone benefits all round if we can provide new employment opportunities to as many as we can.
We know we need more people, but how many of us are actually actively looking at hiring in the next few months? Despite the high levels of business, how many are willing to keep battling through at current staffing levels? Are we looking at the profit margin levels and hesitant to hire?
The simple poll below aims to gauge a rough picture of the intentions of the sector. Whether we’re on a recruitment footing or whether we’re holding off for one reason or another. The poll will run until the end of the month and I’ll report back in early November when the results are in. I am also running this same poll on Twitter and Linkedin where I will combine all results for the most accurate picture. So please take a moment to vote below before you carry on with the rest of your day.
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