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The impact of the 2020 pandemic on the job market reverberates to this day. In 2024, global conflicts, supply chain disruptions, the double-edged sword of technological advances, and remote/hybrid opportunities amplify the sensation that recruiting and retention are more challenging than ever in this ever-changing, roller-coaster landscape. How do companies cope?

In 2021, as resignations surged and companies faced critical labor shortages, impacted employers responded with raises, signing bonuses, and perks to boost employee wellness. This created short-term peaks in starting salary ranges that trickled beyond the most affected industries. As a result, Americans quit 6.1 million fewer jobs in 2023 compared to the previous year, a 12% decrease, and 353,000 jobs were added in January 2024. The unemployment rate stayed at 3.7%, just above a half-century low. These numbers point to a strengthening economy, but just when the data indicates stabilization, the media is reporting mass layoffs at major companies, with predictions of more to come, plus smaller pay increases and hiring slowdowns in certain sectors as large organizations struggle to scale up with the “new normal.” The annual turnover rate for the transportation industry consistently hovers around 50%. This speaks to the volatility of the job market, meaning the “job-hopping” trend doesn’t look to end soon as employees frightened by potential layoffs look for opportunities to secure a more reliable future.

Hiring and retaining good employees has never been an easy task. This is all the more so during turbulent social, political, or economic times.  Lucky for ALC, all of those factors are in play in 2024.

Wait, did I say “lucky”?

That’s right. And I’ll double down on it.

In his book, “The Obstacle is The Way,” NY Times bestselling author, Ryan Holiday writes, “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste. Things that we had postponed for too long, that were long-term, are now immediate and must be dealt with. Crisis provides the opportunity for us to do things that you could not do before… In fact, half of the companies in the Fortune 500 were started during a bear market or recession.”

To quote former Intel CEO, Andy Grove, on what happens to businesses in tumultuous times: “Bad companies are destroyed by crisis. Good companies survive them. Great companies are improved by them.”

The companies with the biggest advantage in such a climate have great benefits, culture, and proven stability resulting from sound financial practices, expansion, and opportunities for internal career growth. A quick check of ALC’s recent internal communications (celebrating 20 and 25 year anniversaries, advertising new positions and growth opportunities) and a look at the Managers’ Meeting agenda tells the story of a company perfectly positioned to seize the advantage of a job market in flux and provide opportunities to job seekers on the hunt for long term security.


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