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What does a good recruitment strategy look like in an uncertain market?

What does a good recruitment strategy look like in an uncertain market?

We have experienced high levels of global market uncertainty for more than a year now. Forecasts contain many unknowns which means that corporate decision making has become an even greater challenge. Implementing a good HR strategy is no exception.

So what does good staff planning look like in times of great market uncertainty? Read on for some insights:

Assessing the impact of COVID-19 on the hiring landscape

The Corona pandemic has a drastic impact on hiring: according to Staffing Industry Analysts (SIA), 38% of companies globally have temporarily paused all their talent acquisition. Another 17% of companies reduced the number of planned hires in 2020.

Within the DACH labour market the trends have been slightly more positive. According to a survey of more than 1’200 HR professionals by XING, 47% of respondents in Switzerland are sticking to their staff planning. Only 21% of companies in Germany, Austria or Switzerland have stopped recruiting altogether, while 20% are hiring fewer staff than originally planned. 7% of companies stated that they had not yet dealt with the consequences of Corona on personnel planning.

However, despite all of this, 73% of the Swiss companies surveyed onboarded new staff since the start of the Corona crisis in mid-March 2020.

Temporary staffing: what is it and how is it used to navigate uncertainty?

Businesses use temporary staff to reshape and respond to a COVID-19 economy where customer behaviour and demand varies drastically day by day. Throughout extended lockdowns and changing guidelines, temporary staffing provides a clear solution for overcoming hiring risk and last-minute operational gaps.

A temporary workforce also affords flexibility to allow for ease of scaling. In an uncertain market where ramping up and down with demand is essential to protect budgets and maximise profits, responsive staffing is not only critical for recovery, but growth too.

A Coople survey with 185 Swiss companies in September 2020 revealed that companies with flexible staff expect to recover more quickly from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic than those that employ only permanent staff. Most companies employing temporary workers expect to recover within 4-12 months, whereas the majority of companies that do not hire temporary workers expect that it will take more than 12 months to recover.

How Flaschenpost and a supermarket chain confidently navigated the crisis with flexible staff from Coople.

Digital staffing platforms such as Coople match flexible, temporary workers with employers in need of temporary staff with specific skills. Throughout the pandemic, Coople has supported hiring companies such as Flaschenpost and a nationwide supermarket chain in finding quality staff across the Retail & Logistics, Office and Cleaning sectors.

  • Flaschenpost, the largest online wine shop in Switzerland, urgently needed to increase its workforce to cope with the huge increase in demand as a result of COVID-19.With the help of Coople’s flexible workforce, Flaschenpost was able to build up a favourites pool of 25 flexible workers within a very short time, having 11 favourite workers on duty at any one time for 5 days per week.

    Read more about how Coople helped Flaschenpost build a favourite pool of skilled, reliable workers here.


  • A discount supermarket chain worked with Coople to cope with exceptionally high demand as well as to ensure the safety of consumers in their shops after the outbreak of the coronavirus. Coople’s unique algorithm enabled the supermarket chain to recruit more than 600 professionals in retail, logistics and security & hygiene across Switzerland in less than 48 hours. Thanks to the flexibility of the Coople platform, the supermarket was also able to scale down immediately when security measures were relaxed again.

    Read more about how a supermarket chain benefited from flexible, crisis-proof workforce planning with Coople here.

Are you ready to confidently lead your company out of the crisis together with Coople? Click here to find out how to make your workforce planning resistant to market uncertainty.

Workforce planning in times of uncertainty: why flexibility is key to future-proofing your business plan.

Workforce planning in times of uncertainty: why flexibility is key to future-proofing your business plan.

Flexibility is key for the long term well–being of businesses, especially in times of uncertainty. The climate crisis, war of invasion in Ukraine, labour shortage, pandemic; the economy has been presented with many challenges. This year, companies will face complex questions like: “How long will the war in Ukraine last?”, “How will rising commodity prices affect my business?”, “What will the forecast for the inflation rate be for Switzerland?” When the economy is hit with such storms, fewer risks are taken.

Permanent jobs are declining. Creating (or maintaining) such positions will always have a risk, but especially when the future is more unpredictable than usual. During these times, it is imperative that businesses adopt cost-efficient, proven and flexible workforce planning initiatives in order to minimise business risk and reduce costs.

What was once known as a “nice to have perk”, flexibility is now essential for maximising profit, reducing financial risk and successful growth.


Why responsive workforce planning matters – especially in uncertain times.

Scheduling team rotas can be challenging even with proper planning. That’s because irregular demand is difficult to plan for. When emergencies happen, managers often hire whoever is available, rather than the best person for the job. Hiring the wrong staff can be a costly, complex and time-consuming process. Previous survey research indicates that the consequences of a bad hire include low productivity, higher recruitment costs, missed business opportunities and minimal revenue.

During the pandemic, it was visibly clear that hiring activity changed dramatically around the globe with 38% of companies pausing their recruitment efforts. Now, workforce quality remains a priority for 60% of global businesses. It’s evident that in the current climate, hiring the right person is more important than ever.

As the economy continues to face multiple challenges, some businesses have already successfully adapted their staffing strategy to scale up and down with irregular and unpredictable demand. They couldn’t have done it without the right workforce planning.


Why workforce planning is not resistant to crisis.

Many traditional staffing solutions can’t keep up with highly fluctuating demand and uncertain market conditions, mostly for the following three reasons:


1. Increasing the workload of the core team can backfire.

Asking the core team to work overtime or on reduced hours can lead to payroll and contractual complexities, making it slow to act. This approach can also cause friction in the team, especially if workers have limited input into scheduling. You might lose your team over this if you do it too often.

Understaffing brings on stress through work overload, while overstaffing results in boredom and inefficiency. This will lead to rising turnover rates and falling profits.

Graphical illustration of the adjustments of a fixed versus flexible workforce to sales fluctuations

2. Traditional temp agencies lack of speed.

Traditional temp agencies provide a convenient solution for improving staff coverage. Some can occasionally handle short-term requests, but few can help in emergencies when last-minute cover is needed for sick & absent employees or for meeting sudden surges in demand. This is because their operations are geared towards manual processing. At the same time, hiring companies increasingly demand more control over who they hire as well as real-time information on the status of the vacancy. This can lead to tension and failure when working with traditional recruitment agencies. 

As businesses plan for a future-proof workforce ,more and more organisations are turning towards automation and digital transformation  as a proven, seamless staffing solution.

3. Traditional workforce management tools don’t scale easily.

Tools that enable the core team to self-schedule and managers to integrate their network of flexible workers lead to more transparency and increase efficiency of internal processes. However, such solutions are limited by the size of the manager’s network. They are only scalable if they enable access to a steadily growing number of fully vetted flexible workers through a strategic staffing plan

Workforce planning – why responsive staffing matters.

Responsive staffing, enables you to recruit and schedule your workforce in line with fluctuations in demand. Getting responsive staffing might be complex, but the solution needn’t be. A great solution should:

  • Only charge you for completed shifts for ‘true’ responsiveness.
  • Allow you to agree on work contracts in a fair, efficient and frictionless way, even at a short notice.
  • Provide you with access to a large pool of fully vetted workers.
  • Handle complex shift requirements on demand.
  • Allow you to choose who you hire and offer full financial transparency.
  • Allow you to build your own pool of favourite workers who are accessible on demand.

Does your staffing strategy tick all of these boxes?

Coople – the digital staffing solution that pays off.

We provide an all-in-one staffing solution for businesses of all sizes. Whether you’re looking to reduce hiring risk or overcome operational gaps, you can future-proof your business strategy with Coople’s flexible platform.

Cost transparency – you only ever pay for completed shifts.. Access line-item breakdown of fees, salaries and national insurance for every shift hour

Increased profit – reduce your fixed costs by flexibly adjusting team sizes to current needs as demand curves fluctuate.

Hire 24/7 – post new jobs at any time and hire workers on your own. Coople’s matching algorithm finds the best workers for you in seconds – thanks to the new “auto-hire” feature.

Assured quality through transparency – see job histories, ratings from other employers and which favourites pools they are part of. Never recruit blind again.

Build your own ‘favourites’ pool  – save lists of favourite workers you trust , so you can keep hiring them at speed in the future.

End-to-end convenience with one solution from sourcing to payroll, saving hiring managers time. You can modify and reschedule hours efficiently, even on the go.

How workforce planning can succeed in uncertain times

With a substantial number of flexible staff, a cost-efficient HR strategy and strong staffing company on your side, the impact of the ongoing crisis can be significantly reduced now and moving into 2023. This is beneficial for short-term, as well as long-term positions that companies plan on filling but wish to place under probation for a short period.

With Coople, flexible workforce planning becomes an experience that pays off. We connect reputable companies with ambitious workers who want to make a difference today and are ready to learn new skills tomorrow.

Register with Coople today – no subscription or set-up costs.

What are job profiles?

What are job profiles?

A job profile is a role and experience level (eg. Expert office assistant) and they determine the types of job requests you will receive when working with Coople. It’s essential that you add at least one job profile, which you can do via the profile tab. Without job profiles, you will not be able to receive tailored job requests.

You can add multiple job profiles to your profile, although evidence of your experience may be required. Having multiple job profiles means that you will receive more relevant job requests sent straight to your mobile, making it even easier to find rewarding work for you.

What job profiles can I add?

The job profiles are as varied as the jobs we have on Coople. From warehouse assistants and forklift drivers to office assistants and promoters, there are plenty of different profiles available.
Once you’ve selected a profile, you may be asked to add your experience level. Our experience levels are divided into three different levels: Novice, Intermediate or Expert.

After you select an experience level, the job profile will be added to your account under the profile tab. Your job profile will then be approved by our team. We take special care to check that your job profiles match your experience to ensure that you receive a salary that reflects your skill level. This process is not automatic, but you don’t have to wait for approval. You can start applying to jobs right away, which speeds up the approval process!

Once you’ve added your job profiles, you will receive relevant job requests to your mobile. However, that’s not the only way you can find work with Coople. You can also apply to a diverse range of opportunities in our jobs marketplace, anytime, anywhere.

And that’s it! We wish you the best of luck on your flexible working journey. If you would like more information on how to set up your profile and maximise your chances of getting hired, browse our helpful guides below:

Temporary workers make the difference to COVID-19 workforce planning

Temporary workers make the difference to COVID-19 workforce planning

A recent market study run by Coople, in cooperation with the independent market research institute GIM Suisse, indicates that more than half of Swiss businesses are planning to hire temporary workers in the near future. With many businesses struggling to effectively plan in this situation of extreme uncertainty, digital staffing platform and EHL Alliance founding member Coople, advises on how to make the most of flexible workers to reduce risk and maximize profits.

While using agency workers on a short-term basis has supported many businesses during the pandemic, it is now becoming clearer that the ability to effectively plan long-term will not return any time soon. Market conditions change on an almost daily basis and we are all struggling to keep up. Many business owners and HR managers are taking the opportunities of enforced closure to take a closer look at their human resource strategies and come up with solutions which will not only withstand the gradual return to business as usual, but also stand the test of time.

When demand uncertainty is high, the right staffing strategy can make or break a business. If you staff for low demand, you might miss out on much needed revenue. If you do the opposite and demand is low, costs can quickly become prohibitive.

Now is therefore the time for businesses to think about short-term workers for the long-term. There are three important things a business needs to get right to make this work:

1. Think about flexible staffing as a core strategy, not just for emergencies

Most businesses prefer to have regular workers to rely on – workers who understand their brand, products and processes. This can be achieved with flexible workers. It just requires consistency.

Flexible workers are not B-employees. They are ambitious and talented people with personal and career goals that can be achieved more easily with flexible schedules. All you need to do is set up adequate processes to onboard and manage them in a way where they can perform at their best.

By building up a larger pool of preferred workers who work in your business part-time but regularly, you can keep up the quality and retain knowledge while increasing your flexibility significantly. Such a pool can easily be built on digital staffing platforms, where businesses can hire workers and make them favorites if they are a particularly good fit for their team. Building a relationship with these workers over the years also increases the chances of them being available during peak times that occur during certain seasonal periods such as Christmas.

2. Don’t compromise on quality when hiring, set your workers up for success

Hospitality and retail businesses, for example, rely heavily on the interpersonal skills and attitude of their workers. Other sectors have different criteria. By building a pool of qualified candidates who you have personally tested, you will be ready for all eventualities. Using a digital platform can save you additional time during the recruitment process because you are able to not only see workers’ CVs, but also previous experiences and the ratings of other employers on a simple interface.

Once you have made your hires, ensure flexible workers receive the same essential training that you would provide to new full-time hires. Providing a high-quality on-boarding process will set your workers up for success, so assume that you will re-hire these workers and that your investment will pay off. To give you maximum flexibility in the short-term, flexible work strategies rely on longer-term commitments.

3. Don’t overload your own team with admin and payroll

From day one, flexible workers automatically have a legal right to minimum wages and social security. The minimum wages can be especially very complicated because you need to consider the location and age of the worker, as well as their working times (minimum wages, for instance, differ for weekends and nights). Before hiring, you also need to make sure you do all the relevant right-to-work checks.

If you pursue a flexible work strategy, it is worth spending some time on deciding whether to hire directly or work with a staffing agency. One benefit of using an agency is that you outsource the HR risk. You pay the agency like any other vendor and you are not responsible for any of the above. The agency will track working hours in detail and you avoid the admin cost of running a potentially complicated payroll. Another benefit is that agencies can give you guidance on competitive wage levels, which is especially relevant during peak season.

The downside? You need to pay an agency fee. However, you can avoid retainers and flat fees by choosing one that charges via a multiplier on each hired hour. It is worth doing the math because an agency fee can still work out cheaper than doing payroll in-house.

Conclusion

Flexible staffing is a powerful tool, provided it is used correctly and organizations behave ethically towards those they hire. More than half of the businesses that Coople recently interviewed have implemented a strategy for hiring agency workers. Can you afford not to?

Photo competition for Cooplers: A recap

Photo competition for Cooplers: A recap

A few weeks ago, we launched a photo competition for Cooplers to spotlight the versatility, talent and commitment of our workforce. From the 8th October to the 1st November, we invited our community to send in photos of themselves in action at work. This competition has since come to an end, but we’re still reeling from the amount of extraordinary entries we received!

As a thank you from the Coople team, we wanted to spotlight the incredible efforts of the community by highlighting some of our favourite entries from the competition. Each of the following pictures perfectly showcased the ambition and dedication we were looking for.

The winners

The winning photos, as chosen by the community! Congratulations once again Laure, Gabriele and Tamara a on your hard earned win.

Some hand-picked staff favourites

We loved seeing the creative entries you all submitted. Though these photos may not have won, we were particularly impressed by their quality and skill.

Thank you again to all that took part! Best of luck with your future shifts, and we hope you continue to showcase your incredible skills and professionalism as a Coopler for a very long time.