Reading Time: 3 minutes

The HR landscape is changing. The world of talent acquisition is evolving.


In a competitive marketplace where candidates have a lot of power during the job search, corporate recruiting leaders have to be proactive and be well prepared for upcoming challenges to stay on top of the game. Read on for the 5 key challenges that we’re seeing—and what you can do to get ahead of them in 2019.


Talent pool diversity

The world is becoming a smaller place with increasing talent mobility. Though hiring a more diverse talent pool covering various countries and backgrounds is becoming indispensable for a successful and sustainable business, many companies suffer from limited satisfying applications and cost-inefficiency.

Apart from introducing more open-minded and inclusive hiring practices, companies should change the way of recruitment by expanding their reach to global talent. The number of globally mobile international students has been on the rise and is projected to reach 6.9 million students by 2030.  To take advantage of talent mobility, it is critical for companies to connect to a global talent network, as it not only provides companies access to a diverse portfolio of international talent, but also enables companies to flexibly target candidates with selected backgrounds and experiences.


Competition in hiring digital talent increases

With the rapid digital transformation, finding digital talent has become one of the biggest challenges facing companies today. According to 2018 Talent Shortage Survey, IT related skills ranked among top 10 most in-demand skills in the world.

For companies that are not able to attract digital talent through competitive remuneration package and deep benefits, crafting and selling company culture, streamlining the hiring process, and personalizing communications towards potential hires becomes increasingly relevant. Details such as clear and detailed job descriptions, timely interview feedback and follow-up would give candidates positive impressions of the company and make them feel valued and respected, which subsequently lead to a higher hiring rate.


Slow hiring processes

In this candidate-driven market where candidates, especially those possessing in-demand skills, are approached by multiple recruiters, it is urgent for companies to speed up their hiring process to capture talented students and graduates before others sign them.

Efficient communication at every level during the hiring process is essential. Recruiters, hiring managers, HR representatives and department heads should form a strong collaboration. HR managers should meet department managers regularly to understand the demand for talent and to perceive hiring needs.

The advancements of recruitment technology also bring new opportunities to reduce cost-per-hire and increase recruiter productivity. Companies can automate high-volume and time-consuming tasks, such as application screening and interview scheduling, increasingly supported by artificial intelligence and machine learning systems. Companies can also leverage virtual reality to share workplace experience, post interactive job advertisements, and run immersive online assessments.


Tailored career development paths

Millennials, as a generation favours their personal needs more than that of the organization they work for and have a higher tendency to change jobs in 1-3 years, are starting to dominate the global workforce. Consequently, how to engage with and retain talent after hiring becomes a thorny problem for many companies.

To retain Millennials in the workforce for a longer period of time, companies should actively provide necessary resources and information, implement skills tracking and development programs, encourage employees to discuss and form their career development plans with line managers and HR consultants, creating a culture that supports and celebrates employees’ professional growth.


Employer branding

More than 75% of job seekers research a company’s reputation and employer brand before applying, as a survey by LinkedIn suggests. In 2019, the climate of skills shortages in many sectors will make talent acquisition even harder.

Improve students’ perceptions of the company would dramatically increase the success rate of graduate recruitment. Here are some examples of branding ideas:

Join force with job portals and career service platforms and share the company’s history, culture, open positions, and current employees’ opinions and reviews on these channels.

Encourage employees and ideally, recruit students from targeted schools, to be the brand ambassadors and spread positive word of mouth both online through social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn and offline through campus fairs and local events.



Highered is the strategic partner of EFMD, providing digital career services to over 500 schools globally to complement campus career service initiatives. To know more about Highered, reach out to or visit us at