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Tips from a seasoned recruitment veteran for getting through a talent shortage

By Jack Campbell | |5 minute read
Tips from a seasoned recruitment veteran for getting through a talent shortage

Michelle Novotny, the managing director of Discovering People spoke to The HR Leader and discussed how business leaders can help their company through the current shortage of staff.

Working through the global financial crisis (GFC), the pandemic during the last two and a half years and subsequent talent shortages, Ms Novotny has had to constantly adapt to an evolving and challenging marketplace. She says that hard work and determination pushed her to succeed: “It was a lot of unprecedented experiences. So, it was quite difficult to make some sound decisions because I'd never experienced it before,” she said.

“When you've got a real passion and desire to do a particular job or work in a particular field, something just keeps you going. And because you've got that true desire and passion to continue, opportunities just somehow prop up again.”


In these times where businesses are scrambling to attract staff, Ms Novotny says that the goal should be retention. That means you are utilising the staff you have and investing in their training. Ms Novotny says this will garner increased productivity.

“Nurturing and developing people is very important for any life cycle of a business, and that creates that loyalty and trust that you're in it together. If people feel that they're growing, they're progressing and they're involved in the business and in what they're actually doing, they'll reward you with that dedication and loyalty and that real desire to actually perform at a very high level,” said Ms Novotny.

“It's important to do whatever you can to retain staff and set up a really positive reputation with your culture and workplace. So, the people that are actually working with you are happy. And when they're going home at the end of the day, they've got happy stories rather than disgruntled stories, sharing that amongst their friends and family. They're almost acting as these ambassadors to your business.”

Ms Novotny highlighted that building strong relationships with stakeholders and keeping them through challenging times will make things easier. Showing loyalty will keep people coming back.

“It's a matter of sometimes just sitting tight, still doing what you are doing, still keeping in contact with your clients and your candidates, making sure that you are available to them if they even just want to chat or want to just find out from your perspective what's happening in the market, but just keep yourself available,” Ms Novotny explained.

“Nothing ever stays the same, so it will come back again where other consultants or other businesses have decided to maybe close their doors or not continue, you are still going to be standing. So, they're going to come back to you.”

The transcript of this podcast episode, when quoted above, was slightly edited for publishing purposes. The full conversation with Michelle Novotny is below.





The practice of actively seeking, locating, and employing people for a certain position or career in a corporation is known as recruitment.

Jack Campbell

Jack Campbell

Jack is the editor at HR Leader.