Fall 2015, Moving Into 2016 : 5 Key Staffing Company Trends To Look Out For

The temporary staffing industry is currently at one of the most dynamic periods in its history. Over the last few years, the staffing industry has been expanding rapidly. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), temporary recruitment hit an all-time high of 2.9 million jobs in mid-2014. And it is still rising.

The Staffing Industry Analysts forecast a 6% growth in 2015, followed by another 5% growth in 2016. Given that, according to American Staffing Association (ASA) statistics, 3 million temps work for US companies each week, the prospects seem bright for staffing companies.

5 staffing trends 2016Even then, the temporary staffing industry isn’t without its challenges. A combination of legal changes, higher standards by host companies, and a shortage of top talent means that staying competitive isn’t a breeze.

For a staffing company to thrive in these rapidly changing times, it needs to stay in tune with market trends. Tracking industry trends will enable a company to maximize the opportunities, and successfully navigate challenges coming ahead. As we move into the 4th quarter of 2015, and on to 2016, the following are the key staffing company trends to look out for.

1. Mobile Recruitment On The Rise

As mobile devices like tablets and smartphones become more commonplace, many job seekers are using them to search for opportunities. According to CareerBuilder 2015 statistics, 71% of staffing company candidates have searched for jobs on a mobile site.

Statistics by Kelton Research reveal that 65% of candidates track job applications using a mobile device. Anecdotal evidence shows that more and more recruits now prefer to submit applications from their mobile devices.

As mobile devices become more ubiquitous (and also more powerful), this trend will definitely continue. For staffing companies, it means one thing – expanding recruitment to mobile devices.

At a minimum, staffing companies will have to ensure that their website is accessible via mobile devices. This will enable them to capture talented individuals who seek out for opportunities using their mobile devices. More forward-looking ones will develop apps which can make it easier for candidates to seamlessly submit applications from their mobile devices.

2. ATS Integration – A Competitive Advantage

Applicant Tracking Software (ATS) is increasingly becoming an essential part of the recruiting process. One of the key trends predicted for 2015 is employers preferring staffing companies which employ ATS in their hiring process. As ATS becomes more popular, this demand will certainly continue.

However, as more employers discover the benefits of ATS Integration (i.e. integrating their system with that of the staffing company), many will certainly demand for it. ATS integration streamlines the screening process, reduces turnaround time, increases operational efficiency, minimizes manual errors, reduces the likelihood of bad hires, and reduces the overall cost of operations.

The number of staffing companies which offer ATS Integration is relatively small. As more employers demand for it, the number will certainly rise. In a few years, it will no doubt become commonplace. For the next one or two years, any staffing company which offers ATS Integration is likely to enjoy a competitive advantage.

3. Workplace Safety – A Legal Obligation

workplace safetyOn July 15th, 2014, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) released a memo which forever changed the legal landscape for staffing companies. The agency stated that it would consider staffing companies as “joint employers” with the host companies which hire their temps. As such, they will share responsibility for the health and safety of their workers.

Since that time, the OSHA has been cracking the whip on staffing companies whose temps it deemed were working under unhealthy or unsafe conditions. It has offered citations against at least 10 staffing companies, slapping them with fines ranging from $6,000 to $64,350.

The growing specter of OSHA means that staffing companies will have to become more involved in workplace health and safety. At a minimum, they will have to participate in health and safety education among their temps. Otherwise, the biggest risk of an OSHA citation is unlikely to be the fine, it will be the negative reputation it gives a staffing company.

4. Employer Branding – A Potential Recruitment Edge?

A staffing company’s reputation is likely to become their greatest asset, or greatest liability when it comes to recruitment. Glassdoor statistics indicate that up to 69% of US workers would not take a job from a company with a bad reputation, even if they were jobless.

They also state that 90% of employees read reviews from both current and former employees before taking accepting an offer of employment. This means that a company with a bad reputation can easily lose potential hires.

Glassdoor statistics also indicate that 94% of people are more likely to apply for a job if an employer actively manages their brand. “Actively manages” in this context includes responding to reviews, updating their social media profiles, and sharing updates about their company culture and work environment.

Such statistics have turned “employer branding” into a buzzword over the past year. As the temporary staffing industry becomes more competitive, it is something which staffing companies will have to turn to. Early adopters will likely enjoy a recruitment edge over those slow to adapt.

5. Big Data & Analytics – A New Buzzword

Predictions about Big Data are becoming almost cliché. Each year is touted as the year when Big Data will finally “arrive”. 2015 was touted as the year when Big Data would go mainstream. So far, it hasn’t happened.

Even then, serious strides have been made especially in its usage in human resource. Sophisticated analytics is also providing a faster way to make sense out of tons of data. According to International Data Corporation Forecast for 2015, companies which use analytics will make decisions 5 times faster than those which don’t.

Such claims are only going to increase in the future. They will also make companies more open to big data. Already, according to IDG Research Services, 85% of people already believe that big data can enable them to make better business decisions.

As staffing companies seek an edge in an increasingly competitive industry, more and more will turn to big data and analytics. This will put pressure on those not using it to join the bandwagon. The fact that HR analytics software is becoming more powerful (and cheaper) will only increase this trend.

In a nutshell, as we move into the last quarter of 2015 and beyond, those are the 5 key staffing company trends to look out for. Paying attention to these trends, and making decisions basing them will position a company to maximize the opportunities, and minimize the risks coming ahead.


PRNewswire (May 14, 2015) Staffing Industry Analysts Projects U.S. Temporary Staffing Industry Will Reach $115 Billion in 2015


PRWeb (January 26, 2015) 7 Staffing Trends To Look Out For In 2015, A Dynamic Report http://www.prweb.com/releases/2015/01/prweb12453036.htm

American Staffing Association (2015) Staffing Industry Statistics https://americanstaffing.net/staffing-research-data/fact-sheets-analysis-staffing-industry-trends/staffing-industry-statistics/

Glassdoor (2015) Top HR Statistics https://www.glassdoor.com/employers/popular-topics/hr-stats.htm

This post was written by Brett McIntyre, at Crimcheck.