“Beep-Beep…. Beep-Beep…. Beep-Beep….”
This is a familiar sound if you are a fan of medical TV shows such as ER or Grey’s Anatomy. It’s the sound of a person’s heartbeat. The line on the electrocardiogram (ECG) machine goes up and down, up and down, and—all being well—you know it’ll go up and down again as the cycle continues.
What’s this got to do with hiring?
Well, the economy runs in cycles, too, with booms and recessions. Instead of an ECG machine, we can measure these cycles by looking at the rate of unemployment, which seems to go up and down roughly every 10 years.
So, while the coronavirus pandemic isn’t something we saw coming, it can be seen as just another cycle in the economy. We’ve gone down, but we’ll be going up again soon enough, and, as we found out from our own data, it may already be starting to happen.
Is hiring on the up?
Of course, the pandemic isn’t over yet, we’re still navigating economic uncertainty, but we’re already seeing an uptick in the data when it comes to hiring.
After months of coping with the virus, businesses have been changing the way they do things to survive and thrive in this crisis. As they do, we’re seeing the change in the unemployment rate as it drops from 15% at its peak to 11%.
We’re also seeing the uptick in GoodTime’s interview data. At GoodTime, we help recruiters hire people seamlessly with our leading interview scheduling software. We collected interview information from more than 200 companies across different industries to see how things changed throughout the year.
This uptick could hint that there might be room for mild optimism and that we’re heading into the upwards part of the cycle already as the economy rebounds.
Overview of our data
In April, in an effort to help candidates focus their job searching effort, we published our data on how hiring has changed in each industry throughout COVID-19.
It showed that certain industries were getting a disproportionate amount of negative impact while others were clearly gaining from or holding strong despite the pandemic.
Now three months later, our interview data shows that our customers are resuming their hiring efforts as we see a sharp uptick in the total number of interviews across our customer base. Though to varying degrees, we’re now seeing positive changes across almost all industries.
Here’s a look at how quickly interview volume changed from March through June.
Let’s dig further into our data
As you can see, March saw some big falls in interview volume, but also some big increases. In fact, it’s 50/50 as 11 out of the 21 industries featured here saw an increase in interview volume.
The creative agency industry was hardest hit with a 68.46% fall, followed by consumer at 39.83%, HR at 23.63% and the travel industry at 23.12%.
On the other side, the medical industry saw an 85.47% increase in the amount of interviews, 84.78% for video providers, 66.72% for security and 40.25% for the technology industry.
April is an interesting one. There was a 5010.9% increase in interviews for the food industry and a 1549.68% increase for eCommerce.
However, on the whole, the month saw more industries see a decline in interviews, with creative agencies and travel seeing the sharpest declines.
Come May though, we started to see both positive and negative changes in different industries, with 12 out of the 21 industries we looked at experiencing an increase in interview volume.
The creative agencies are back with a 109.09% increase in interview volume. Finance, eCommerce and real estate saw huge increases, too.
Other industries saw a reduction again including travel, video providers, consumer and payment with the highest.
And that brings us to June, when many countries around the world began lifting their lockdown restrictions and business began operating in the new normal.
Our data backs that up with all but three of the industries we looked at seeing an increase in interview volume. Food saw a huge 1007.8% increase followed by HR, security and marketing.
In fact, even the travel industry saw an increase in interviews of an impressive 210.28%.
Though COVID-19 is still a problem that our society is grappling with, can we speculate that the business world is regaining its strength and is starting to hire people back?
What does this all mean?
Hiring is a leading indicator of growth and recovery, so these numbers show that the economy as a whole is starting to rebound as the number of interviews increase almost across the board.
But, perhaps more surprisingly, it shows that the specific industries that were hit the hardest in March—travel, creative agency, consumer and HR—are rebounding too, and fast.
What’s next for recruitment?
Of course, this year we’ve seen the fall in the economic cycle, but these falls aren’t all bad. They often drive growth—just take the global financial crisis of 2008 for example which brought about financial transformation through the government passed reforms such as the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.
So, what change and growth will we see come from this fall in the cycle? COVID-19 is already shaping our new reality of remote work and distributed teams.
For recruitment, the big question is how do we shape the interview process and candidate experience through the talent acquisition process in this new reality?
GoodTime has been speaking with talent leaders and will share a series on how the interview process will be shaped moving forward. Stay tuned!