Labor Hoarding Is Trending for Employers Looking To Avoid a Labor Shortage

There are a lot of new labor trends and workforce buzzwords that have come about since the pandemic took a sledgehammer to the status quo. The Great Resignation, aka the Big Quit, aka the Great Reshuffle, refer to employees leaving their place of business in record numbers; over 47 million workers in the United States voluntarily quit their jobs in 2021.(1) Quiet Quitting started making the rounds in 2022; describing a movement of employees doing the least amount of work possible to keep their jobs. Gallup reported in 2022 that quiet quitters comprised at least 50% of the workforce.(2) The reasons for workplace fatigue typically revolve around seeking a better work/life balance, better compensation, or more opportunities for advancement. Post-pandemic labor shortages are forecast to continue unabated in 2023 due to an imminent recession and persistent inflation.(3) Mikel Lindsaar, CEO and Founder of StoreConnect, notes, “Employers are mounting an offensive with a trend of their own, dubbed ‘Labor Hoarding’ in an effort to retain their workforce. eCommerce retailers of all sizes are bracing for the worst. However, the stakes are always higher for small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) trying to stay competitive in the midst of another potential labor crisis.”

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Skynova surveyed 1,010 business owners to find out why they are engaging in labor hoarding, what retention strategies they use, and what jobs have the greatest longevity. The survey revealed that in 2022, 91% of small businesses were actively labor hoarding, and 89% plan to continue in 2023. Among the top reasons cited for SMBs increasing their effort to retain their current employees was confidence in their team (48%), layoffs being bad for employee morale (≈48%), and decreasing hiring expenses (>40%). Their retention strategies included higher compensation (50%), connecting and communicating with their employees (≈47%), more opportunities for remote work (44%), and more paid time off (16%). Remarkably, 67% of SMB business owners stated that they would be willing to cut their own salaries to keep their staff.(4)

The practice of labor hoarding is understandable when considering current statistical data. The latest research demonstrates that 87% of retailers in the U.S. cite talent shortages as a significant challenge for 2023, currently estimated at 74%. Technology and IT top the list of sought-after skills, and a continued shortage could cost the U.S. $162 billion.(5) So, it appears that labor shortages will continue to pose logistical challenges for SMBs to operate at full capacity with fewer human resources.

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Lindsaar advises SMBs, “Technology, above all else, is a labor-saving instrument that does not replace valuable employees but rather facilitates repetitive tasks, allowing a business’s workforce investment to apply their talents where they are needed most. And for SMBs, it levels the playing field, allowing the Davids of eCommerce to compete with the Goliaths on a global scale.” StoreConnect is the only fully-integrated eCommerce, point-of-sale, content management system and CRM platform powered by Salesforce. StoreConnect incorporates all of the tools necessary to expedite online sales, payments, website management, point-of-sale, inventory management, and order fulfillment. Built on Salesforce, the world’s largest and most successful Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platform, StoreConnect provides eCommerce 3.0 solutions that provide a single source of truth custom-designed for small- and medium-sized businesses to synthesize all of their marketing, sales, and support channels into one system saving time, double-work, and lost information.

Lindsaar advises, “Eliminating tedious and time-consuming tasks alleviates employee burnout and opens up opportunities for their career development and growth. SMBs can spend more time engaging and motivating their team to utilize their talents and create a loyal workforce dedicated to the company’s success.”

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