Today, businesses are facing unique challenges. The effects of the pandemic continue to cause hurdles from extensive rules and regulations, disgruntled employees, to labor shortages. It’s no wonder that businesses are scrambling to stay ahead of these downward trends. While there are several obstacles that businesses are facing; the top three consistent challenges in 2022 are labor shortages, remote/hybrid options, and health and safety.
Let’s break them down.
1. Labor Shortages
A labor shortage occurs when a business does not have enough labor (staff) to complete the necessary work. According to statistics Canada: Across all 20 sectors, Canadian employers were seeking to fill 915,500 job vacancies in the fourth quarter of 2021, 80.0% more than in 2019 and 63.4% more than in 2020. When this situation arises, we find that business usually take one of two approaches to solving this issue;
I. With reduced staff, there are simply not enough hands to do everything that needs doing. And so tasks that are labeled as less important or less urgent get put off or simply taken off of the to-do list altogether.
II. Some businesses add responsibilities or combine jobs in an effort to forgo changing the task list however this creates another problem – overworked and overwhelmed employees.
Both of these quick fixes create errors that usually affect the cash handling of small businesses most severely. No matter how much the worker is doing, the number of daily tasks, rules, and regulations are halting production. The employee has no time to do anything correctly as they are consumed with ‘just getting everything done’.
The danger here is that these shortages can also lead to businesses and employees taking shortcuts, which, leads to errors that negatively affect businesses.
Solution: Simplifying the cash-handling with technology is one of the top ways to address the labor shortage. Implement technology to enhance cash handling processes to give existing employees more time to focus on completing tasks efficiently.
2. Health & Safety
Health care has long been its own list of issues that businesses face, and the pandemic has only added to this list. If you want to compete for talent in 2022, you’ll have to increase your compensation levels and benefits packages beyond the traditional health care, dental, vision and retirement savings plans. By addressing health concerns head on, businesses will position themselves to retain top employees, and grow their business
Many struggling with health issues are looking for companies to implement innovative ways to address this issue. Treating employees holistically, and using a personalized touch, goes a long way towards bridging the relationship between employer and employee.
Solution: Improving employees’ benefits and starting those benefits earlier during the hiring phase are two ways address this downward curve. Find out what matters most to employees and implement small changes, such as a quiet place to retreat to during the workday.
3. Remote/Hybrid Options
Employees value their time and health, more than a paycheck. When labor is in short supply, wages goes up, but many employees are still staying away from jobs. About 53% expect a hybrid arrangement, and 24% expect to work exclusively remotely.
These changes will result in an office environment like we have never seen before, nearly doubling the number of people who will be working remotely at least part of their week (compared with pre-pandemic numbers).
Investing in automation and in employees are businesses’ blueprint. Automation is an optimal step towards meeting the upcoming challenges that businesses face. Technology helps to streamline many outdated practices, thereby, reducing errors and increasing productivity. Offering employee benefits and perks, is also crucial in addressing challenges. These solutions help to ensure that businesses are in a strong position to deal with some of the challenges they face.