Digital Transformation Through Agile Delivery
IT Agility AbilityTM
Digital Transformation Through Agile Delivery
IT Agility AbilityTM

The Great Workforce Dilemma of 2024: Tackling Short Staffing

By . May 8, 2024

In recent times, the business landscape has been facing an unprecedented challenge - the persistent issue of short-staffing. In a recent survey commissioned by Indeed Flex, a third of UK businesses reported being short-staffed at least once a week.

An additional 23% of businesses reported being understaffed at least once a month.

Meanwhile, 24% of businesses found it hard to fill vacancies in the last year, and turned to temporary staff and contractors to fill their short staffing issues.

This pervasive issue of short-staffing is a multifaceted problem with implications for both employers and employees. For businesses, operating with reduced staff levels can lead to decreased efficiency, compromised service quality, and increased pressure on remaining employees. Moreover, frequent staff shortages can hinder strategic initiatives, impede growth opportunities, and erode competitive advantage.

On the other hand, employees may bear the brunt of short-staffing through heightened workloads, increased stress, and burnout. Additionally, prolonged absences due to illness can impact individuals' well-being and financial stability, highlighting the interconnectedness of health and work.

So, what can organisations do to address this challenge and foster a resilient workforce amidst health-related uncertainties? Here are some potential strategies:

Invest in Health and Well-being Programs: Prioritise employee health by offering comprehensive wellness initiatives, including access to mental health support, ergonomic workspaces, and preventive healthcare services. Promoting a culture of well-being can help mitigate the risk of illnesses and reduce absenteeism.

Flexible Work Arrangements: Embrace flexible work arrangements such as remote work or flexible hours, allowing employees to balance their professional responsibilities with personal needs. This flexibility can accommodate individuals dealing with health issues or caregiving responsibilities while ensuring business continuity.

Cross-Training and Succession Planning: Develop a robust cross-training program to equip employees with diverse skills and competencies, enabling seamless coverage during staff shortages. Additionally, prioritise succession planning to identify and groom potential successors for critical roles, minimising disruptions caused by unexpected absences.

Enhance Recruitment and Retention Efforts: Proactively address recruitment challenges by leveraging innovative sourcing strategies, offering competitive compensation packages, and cultivating a compelling employer brand. Moreover, prioritise employee retention through initiatives like career development opportunities, recognition programs, and inclusive workplace practices.

Utilise Technology and Automation: Embrace technological solutions and automation tools to streamline workflows, optimise resource allocation, and enhance operational efficiency. By leveraging technology, organisations can mitigate the impact of staff shortages and empower employees to focus on high-value tasks.

Promote Work-Life Balance: Encourage a healthy work-life balance by setting clear expectations around workload management, encouraging breaks, and discouraging presenteeism. Recognise and reward employees who prioritise self-care and demonstrate a sustainable approach to work.

In conclusion, addressing the persistent challenge of short-staffing requires a holistic approach that prioritises employee well-being, operational resilience, and strategic workforce management. By implementing proactive measures to support health and flexibility, investing in talent development, and leveraging technology, organisations can navigate uncertainties and cultivate a thriving workforce in the face of adversity.

At Certes, we can help with both a temporary and permanent solution to your staff shortage by taking advantage of our high calibre of talent within our recruitment division. Read more here.



Who We Work With