We are in the midst of the tightest labor markets in years, with a 3.7 percent unemployment rate - the lowest since 1969. The competition for the available talent has become so fierce that many companies cite the lack of available workers as a factor limiting growth.
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With the holiday season approaching companies are moving to staff up for the biggest shopping period of the year – and the competition for employees is fierce.
Julia Pollack, a labor economist with ZipRecruiter, explained to FOX Business just how tight the labor market is right now.
"Last year, there was a ratio of 2.5 job seekers to one retail job. This year, there is a much lower one-to-one ratio of job seekers to retail jobs, making it far more challenging for retailers to find qualified candidates this holiday season.”
Pollack noted that many companies are increasing pay and offering some perks to employees as a means to retain and attract workers. But, according to surveys conducted by the company, the size of a business is an important component to how successful they will be at attracting talent.
While big businesses seem to have advantages over their smaller counterparts, when it comes to the war for talent, small- and mid-sized companies win out.
A survey conducted by ZipRecruiter in February found that 63.9 percent of over 1,100 polled job seekers said they would rather work at a small- or medium-sized business over a large company. The main reasons they cited for their preference included the more personal feel of smaller companies, the ability to see their impact on the business, more flexible schedules and better promotion opportunities.
Further, an additional survey conducted in April, this time polling 21,211 job seekers, found that they feel small companies post a disproportionate number of higher-paying job titles as well as higher-skilled jobs.
For these reasons, ZipRecruiter notes that many small businesses have been able to defy the tight job market and gain an advantage by offering benefits beyond pay, including a more flexible work environment with better career prospects.