“Staffing Industry” Talent Acquisition (TA) Research Now Underway. More to come.

We are continuing to progress in the start-up of our new research focus area:  Talent Acquisition (TA).  This research will be accessible to our subscribing members. We will soon be announcing the start of broad survey of the unique state of Staffing Industry TA.


Staffing Firms are specifically in the business of establishing a work arrangement--however contingent-- between talent/labor in the market and other businesses that require the services of that talent/labor.  Consequently, Talent Acquisition (TA) should be a (perhaps "the") core set of business processes and competencies of Staffing Firms.

Given the strategic and tactical criticality of Talent Acquisition for Staffing Firms, we have launched a new research area to compile and analyze information that will allow our SIA Staffing Firm Members to understand actual “staffing industry” practices and trends and how they compare to industry and segment averages and aggregates (and where there may be differences between practices and trends in and outside the Staffing Industry) 

Early this year, to determine where we should be focusing our research, we conducted a “spot survey” of "Talent Acquisition Managers" among our members (i.e., managers, heads of recruiting, sourcing).   We had a reasonable response, with respondents from a mix of segments and revenue sizes that was fairly representative of the industry (though, not too surprisingly, with a larger than proportionate number of respondents from IT and Healthcare staffing firms).  In addition, there was a good mix of perspectives almost completely from “Manager-level and above” positions (including many C-level execs).

Here is a summary of those ”research topic/subject areas” for which respondents rated their interest as either “High” or “Top-of-Mind, Critical.”

Talent Acquisition "Research Topic/Subject Area" Interested Rated…. High  + Top-of-Mind
Talent acquisition “functional activities/ processes” (talent pool management, sourcing, assessment, interviewing, selection, verification, on-boarding, etc.) 85.70%
Talent acquisition “strategies/organizational models” (for example, in-house vs. outsourced functions, active recruitment campaigns vs. passive branding and referral approaches, etc.) 84.70%
Use and management of (internal and/or external)“recruiters” 78.50%
Workforce/talent pool/labor market “data and analytics” 71.40%
Talent acquisition “technologies” 64.30%
Talent acquisition “performance metrics” 53.90%
Talent acquisition “cost structures” 42.80%
Differences between the talent acquisition of “temporary workers” vs.that of “permanent workers” 28.60%

The "spot survey" was not statistically rigorous, rather was intended as a kind of informal poll of interests to obtain some initial soundings and guidance from our members. 

That said: the top 3 areas of interest did not surprise me, though I was surprised (positively) to see “data and analytics” garnering so much interest.  Conversely, I was somewhat surprised and puzzled to see “technology” and “metrics” as being considered important, but not that important. 

Does this reflect “just the way it is,” sampling error, or some industry negative bias toward “technology” and “metrics?”

What are your thoughts?


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