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Skills, Not Pedigree Matter More Post Covid-19

In January 2021, eighty percent of Wipro’s employees received their increment.

And in the next two months, in June 2021, Wipro will be increasing the pay for the remaining employees who were not part of the increment in January 2021.

This is a protective measure that Wipro has taken to reduce its attrition rate. The company faced a 12.1% attrition in the last quarter of FY21.

The war for good talent has just begun.

As per LinkedIn’s Future of Talent 2021 report:

  • Post Covid-19, more than 9 in 10 (93 percent) of companies in India are looking to fill open roles internally.
  • More than 95 percent of companies in India have set up L&D programs to bridge the gap for employees and prepare them to be future-ready.
  • Internal mobility and data-led hiring will take precedence.
  • Employers will focus on improving employee experience.
  • Over 90 percent of companies will use data to make hiring decisions.
  • 53 percent of employers will use data to map skills with open positions within the company.
  • Nine in ten companies will reduce redundancies, reduce talent acquisition costs, and increase remote working efficiency by merging roles.

Where does this leave employees? Does this mean skill-based hiring will be more beneficial for companies than making pedigree-based hiring?

Companies feel that pedigree is good to have, but skills matter more when it comes to ground reality.

Another LinkedIn data points out that there has been a twenty percent increase in hiring managers who do not have a conventional four-year degree in recent years.

It makes sense.

Take note of this; employees who do not have a four-year degree have stayed 34 percent longer in companies than employees who have a traditional four-year degree.

Employers have made a note of this sincerely. That is why hiring teams now spend a substantial amount of time crafting the exact and the most complete job responsibilities instead of outlining a set of archaic job ‘requirements’. The pandemic has indeed reformed specific vital benchmarks for companies where matters of recruitment and retention are concerned.

Take, for example — the 2008 recession — where in the aftermath of it, when long-term unemployment in the U.S. peaked to unprecedented levels, employers did not know what to do.

The only way they thought they could continue to remain afloat and weather the storm was to not be open and friendly to candidates; instead, companies inflated the requirements in their job posts.

This translated to a job that needed only about three years of affiliated experience before the recession now demanded five years of experience and as a cherry on the cake — a bachelor’s degree.

In 2018, EY and IBM increasingly hired candidates who did not come with a bachelor’s degree. Traditionally, companies searched for candidates with traditional degrees for filling up roles that demanded extensive soft skills, written and verbal communication, and problem-solving.

But the competitive labor market forced companies to provide opportunities and source talent from untapped markets, such as candidates who have received certifications from community colleges, formal and informal apprenticeships, career-program partnerships, and other similar job-training programs.

While skill-based hiring is undoubtedly part of the current recruitment philosophy — companies must never forget is that while they are proactive and reformist in their measures to reduce talent acquisition costs and increase efficiencies, it should not come at the expense of lowering the organization’ standards.

Specific skill-based assignments that match the company’s skill requirement and matching and sometimes going beyond the skillsets and pedigree to assess deeper talent characteristics would help companies get the right candidate to fill the vacancy.