Why 2023 HR Trend ‘Quiet Hiring’ is a Good Thing (but not for everyone)
However, a new (but maybe not so new) term has emerged in the HR lexicon, known as Quiet Hiring. You might be wondering what it means for your workforce, or you might be considering writing it off as some controversial buzzword. However, we encourage you to keep reading before you make any hasty decisions that could impact your business needs or your budget.
According to a recent Monster.com survey of 1,000 workers, a whopping 80% of employees said they have been quietly hired.
In this blog post we will cover what Quiet Hiring is, who it benefits, and provide you with a resource to help you begin implementing Quiet Hiring the right way.
What is Quiet Hiring?
In simplest terms, “Quiet hiring is the practice of an organization acquiring new skills without hiring new full-time employees.” - Gartner Human Resources Glossary
Quiet Hiring is being leveraged by organizations to preserve vital business functions and recruitment costs by mixing up the roles of current employees or bringing in temporary contractors to address evolving organizational challenges.
At a time when there is so much uncertainty inside and outside of the workplace, it is crucial for HR leaders to be transparent while being sensitive to the needs of their employees.
Who Shouldn’t Consider Quiet Hiring
When was the last time you took the pulse of your organization? How is everyone feeling? Do they feel valued or are they calling out sick all the time? Now would be a good time to review turnover rates, performance, annual review scores, and the overall outlook from managers about how employees are feeling inside and outside of work.
Unrealistic deadlines and high expectations continue to be thrown at employees, creating pressure for them to do more with less and faster. We are also starting to see “under the bus” culture come to light. If this sounds familiar, then your employees are likely stressed, burnt out, or overwhelmed, but it doesn’t necessarily mean Quiet Hiring is off the table altogether.
In this case, HR and Talent Leaders have choices.
- They can fill the skill gaps or shift extra responsibilities to temporary contract staff.
- They can implement personal and professional well-being solutions to address these inevitable challenges that come with economic uncertainty and a shifting work environment.
Ultimately, the latter is beneficial no matter where your organization is at the moment.
Many employees who are familiar with quiet quitting or even took part in it, did so because they felt they were overworked and underappreciated. They have felt disconnected and there is a lack of transparency and communication from their managers. This has led to declining trust in employers and the growing mental health challenges we are seeing in the workplace today leading to the phenomena of the Great Resignation and quiet quitting.
Then we add layoffs into the mix, and it’s easy to see how remaining employees can become disenfranchised and need extra support.
“Success in leveraging quiet hiring hinges on clear communication. Employers need to be transparent with employees when pivoting roles and shifting them internally to support needs, explaining the value it will provide and how the movement will help advance their career at the company,” shares Bundle founder Kayla Lebovits on LinkedIn.
As an HR Leader, when carefully considering Quiet Hiring, it is certainly a matter of having intentions that benefit all parties, but also understanding the sensitivity of these strategies, and the overall perception your employees might have of them. You should then weigh this against the climate in your organization to decide if quiet hiring makes sense for you at this time.
And if not, start prioritizing the health and well-being of your employees as a long-term sustainable solution to future-proof your workforce.
This is why we launched Bundle.
Bundle offers an all-in-one holistic solution that caters to your employees' individual needs with hundreds of personalized video sessions led by experts in their field.
Who Quiet Hiring is Best For
Maybe your organization is on a hiring freeze, or the overall outlook is grim for when you’ll have the budget for recruitment costs anytime soon.
However, if the overall state of your organization is positive, your employees are motivated to succeed and advance in their careers then Quiet Hiring may be a good strategy to introduce.
HR leaders can use the following to gauge employees' interest and strengths in order to fill skill gaps:
- Conduct 360-degree reviews: Managers can gather feedback from employees' supervisors, peers, and direct reports to get a well-rounded picture of their strengths and areas for improvement.
- Administer skill assessments: Employers can use skill assessments to evaluate employees' competencies and identify areas for development or upskilling.
- Utilize surveys: Employers can conduct surveys to gather information about employees' career aspirations and interests.
- Conduct employee interviews: One-on-one interviews can provide an opportunity for employees to share their career goals and interests with their managers.
Quiet Hiring comes with many benefits for employees who are hungry to learn and want to move up the value chain in your organization.
Kayla gives the skinny on who should be taking advantage of this trend and how: “Quiet hiring gives companies the opportunity to invest in a current employee rather than dealing with the administrative expense and efforts of bringing on, onboarding, and training a new full-time employee," she said. "It saves those businesses money on onboarding, benefits, administrative expenses, and other costs while investing in current talent," says Kayla.
Kayla has had many conversations recently with founders who see quiet hiring as a way to brave the economic recession, especially as layoffs and hiring freezes have become more prominent and continue to stretch company resources.
The Bottomline: Quiet Hiring Works When Done the Right Way
“I think more and more companies will lean into quiet hiring and in the next 2-4 years it will be a norm as leaders reimagine their company playbooks and what the workforce of the future will look like,” Kayla shared on LinkedIn recently.
To summarize, HR leaders must ensure their team environment is in a good place before introducing Quiet Hiring or it can have dire consequences. If employees are already overworked or downtrodden by the economic strain it is placing on them, they will not be as receptive.
There are several key strategies to consider and pitfalls to avoid in order to implement Quiet Hiring the right way.
We explain all of this and more in our latest guide: How to Future-Proof Your Workforce with Quiet Hiring. Instantly download today for your free copy!