Focus on retention, or how the labour market responds to the mobilisation

Who needed the university diploma and how well-paid employees have chosen being demoted to “protected” sectors

With the start of partial mobilisation in Russia, the labour market is undergoing transformation — it can be more feminine and old in the future, experts say. Meanwhile, companies have already unfolded a fight for employees. There is going to be an outflow of vacancies soon, and in general there is a shift of the strategy from hiring to retaining, notes founder of Darwin Modern Education Accessibility Development Fund, former top manager of BARS Group and creator of Round career guidance app for teenagers Galina Akhmerova in an op-ed column for Realnoe Vremya.

Interesting landscape in the labour market

The role of HR has grown in every company: first of all, it is work with the psychological (corporate) spirit and legal advice for the categories entitled to the mobilisation. At the same time, there is a serious shift of focuses in recruiting. Though we don’t yet see dramatic changes in the labour market itself (according to HeadHunter, in the last two weeks, the number of vacancies and CVs has insignificantly decreased, by about 0,5-0,7%), an interesting landscape has already been formed.

What I would like to pay attention to is, first of all, the sectors from a perspective of the economy’s focus on them.

Alyona Vladimirskaya, for instance, forecasts that the following sectors will be in the top:

  • industrial and production areas (including the light industry);
  • microelectronics and construction (road and industrial);
  • agriculture;
  • information technologies and security, telecom;
  • pharmaceutics;
  • tourism.

And everything somehow related to the state and its orders. If a prism of categories for the exemption from the mobilisation is added here too, there is an idea of more desirable sectors for job seekers.

Employees with salary of 200k choose being demoted to “protected” sectors

Workers of IT companies, mobile operators, financial organisations and backbone mass media outlets as well as enterprises of the Defence and Industrial Complex can get an exemption. Graduates of these specialities have needed the university diploma like never before. I already know several cases when employees with a salary of 200,000 rubles choose being demoted to 100,000 to more “protected” sectors.

The partial mobilisation will soon lead to an outflow of vacancies in the labour market: they have better things to do now. Talking with representatives of HR from different spheres in general I can note that there is a shift of the strategy from hiring to retaining.

All factors influence it:

  • partial mobilisation;
  • fragmented outflow of staff from the country;
  • remote working;
  • the cost of retention, of course.

According to different calculations, retaining an employee is 3-5 times* cheaper than hiring a new one. At Round, we have done research on the benefit of retention. Even if the staff turnover falls by 2%, the result for the business of a company with 1,000 workers can be perceptible.

To sum up, I would like to say that no matter what changes are taking place in the labour market, they always both develop the flexibility and transformation of the workers themselves to the good and provide an impulse to develop new competencies among job seekers.

Galina Akhmerova

The author’s opinion does not necessarily coincide with the position of Realnoe Vremya’s editorial board.