Business Marketing

Randstad Sourceright release 2021 Talent Trends Report

  • Written by a contributor

Businesses continue to struggle to find qualified talent despite millions of  individuals looking to re-enter the workforce  

2021 Talent Trends Report finds 40 percent of human capital leaders say talent scarcity has  negatively impacted their organization, highlights need for reskilling 

Even amid record high unemployment rates across the world  as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, talent scarcity remains a major challenge for businesses.  According to the 2021 Talent Trends Report released today by Randstad Sourceright, 40  percent of human capital leaders report that talent scarcity has negatively impacted their  organization – the highest total in the past five years.  

Based on a survey of 850 C-suite and human capital leaders in 17 markets across the world, the  2021 Talent Trends Report provides global insights into the top 10 talent trends that will  dominate 2021, especially as businesses begin to outline recovery plans in response to the  pandemic.  

The survey found 40 percent of HR leaders continue to experience talent scarcity in IT, while 28  percent say they can’t find enough qualified candidates for HR roles — and nearly one in five  need more finance and accounting specialists.  

“2020 was certainly a tumultuous year, resulting in a global economic decline that led to millions of individuals losing their jobs. Yet despite this large talent pool of available workers,  employers continue to face a growing skills gap — especially for digital skills — that has been  exacerbated by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic,” said Mike Smith, global CEO of Randstad  Sourceright. “Employers will need to focus their attention on building a more robust talent  pipeline and implementing reskilling programs to gain a competitive edge as they recover from  the pandemic.”  

To successfully build reskilling programs and maximize their talent pipeline, Randstad  Sourceright’s Talent Trends research found that many businesses are turning to talent analytics  to better understand what is being spent on talent, how these resources are utilized and the  availability of specific skills within their own organization. Nearly 1 in 5 human capital leaders  say they have started investing in talent analytics due to the pandemic, and 90 percent say they  will continue to budget for talent analytics platforms even after the pandemic ends.  

“Talent analytics have always been of the utmost importance to talent leaders, and will now  play an even more integral role in companies’ recovery efforts,” said Smith. “As the global  economy recovers and hiring increases to meet business demand, human capital leaders will  play an essential role in providing their organizations with the in-depth data needed to build a  robust talent acquisition strategy and help them compete for the best talent in an uncertain  labor market.” 

Another critical component of post-pandemic recovery cited by human capital leaders is the  creation of increasingly flexible workforces. Seventy percent of employers said their workforce  was just as productive or more productive while working from home, and 64 percent of talent  leaders said that offering flexible working arrangements will continue to be key to attracting top  talent. A summary of findings from the 2021 Talent Trends Report is below:  

2021 Talent Trends Report: Key Findings

Flexibility is key to talent attraction: In fact, 80 percent say their business will  consider some sort of permanent work-from-home policy. 

Productivity remains high: Nearly 70 percent of employers believe their workforce  was just as productive or more productive working from home than prior to the  pandemic.  

Employers should play a role in reskilling: A majority of human capital leaders (92  percent) say companies should be responsible for reskilling employees, but a majority  also believe the government (68 percent) and universities (65 percent) have to do  more. 

Talent experience is more important now: Sixty-three percent of respondents  believe the talent experience is now more important in a post-outbreak environment,  and 75 percent of human capital leaders believe workers’ expectations of employers are  continually increasing. 

Shift to more contingent talent: In 2017, 29 percent of respondents reported they  had shifted permanent roles to temporary ones, but that number fell each subsequent  year to 21 percent in 2020. 2021 research shows expected conversions to temporary  roles rose slightly to 22 percent. 

About Randstad Sourceright 

Randstad Sourceright is a global talent solutions leader, driving the talent acquisition and  human capital management strategies for the world’s most successful employers. We empower  these companies by leveraging a Human Forward strategy that balances the use of innovative  technologies with expert insights, supporting both organizations and people in realizing their  true potential.    

As an operating company of Randstad N.V. – the world’s leading global provider of HR services  with revenue of €23.7 billion – Randstad Sourceright’s subject matter experts and thought  leaders around the world continuously build and evolve our solutions across recruitment process  outsourcing (RPO), managed services programs (MSP) and total talent solutions. In 2019,  Randstad helped more than 2 million candidates find a meaningful job with one of our 280,000  clients in 38 markets around the world and trained and reskilled more than 350,000 people.  Read more at