Mar 15th, 2017 | By | Category: Corporate Growth, Featured


Part I of THE TIDE IS TURNING: LABOR DEMAND EXCEEDING SUPPLY showed that supply and demand have struck again, turning the tide from an abundance of labor/workers/professionals for companies to choose from to the new human capital dynamics I forecasted beginning in 2016 in my 2016 Overall Economic Employment Forecast —“retaining/growing nimble employees in a tight labor market will become a critical success factor.”

The cybersecurity industry has already been facing the talent shortage that even more companies are likely to be dealing with in 2017. Alberto Yepez, Managing Director of Trident Capital Cybersecurity, gave 11 strategies to implement to address the cybersecurity skill shortage[i] that are very transferable to other industries. The first three of those strategies—(1) Build an in-house corporate training program; (2) Turn to military veterans (and other groups) for help; and (3) Partner with colleges to create programs—including internships—that provide the necessary talent—were discussed with examples and advice in Part I of THE TIDE IS TURNING: LABOR DEMAND EXCEEDING SUPPLY.

This Part II of THE TIDE IS TURNING: LABOR DEMAND EXCEEDING SUPPLY continues that list below, providing companies with 8 more ways to find/create/improvise if—or when—they face a talent shortage.

4.  Coach and promote entry-level talent. Way too large a portion of U.S. college undergraduates—even from top tier colleges and programs—are finding it difficult to gain that first career position.   They are the answer to a company’s talent shortage IF a company invests in some training resources. A great list of some of those training resources can be found under Strategy #3, Part I of THE TIDE IS TURNING: LABOR DEMAND EXCEEDING SUPPLY.

5.  Lean on the marketing department to recruit talent. Social media and a company’s current employees are a winning combination to recruit top talent just like the company’s already employed top talent who fit the culture and produce the desired results. How? Have marketing provide each employee in a talent shortage area with a company approved tag line to post on their LinkedIn, FaceBook, and other appropriate social media sites that lets others know that if they have a background like such and such to contact “X.”

A company can ask their top talent if they would write a short pre-approved note about why they like/value working for the company that the employee then posts on Glassdoor, LinkedIn, FaceBook, and other appropriate social media sites. Marketing should also be posting interesting updates about the company and its positions on corporate pages on LinkedIn, Facebook, Glassdoor, etc. Information needs to be in the new style of friendly, fun, informative. Video clips featuring who the company is, its culture, and why it makes sense to work there are now a “must.”

6.  Be a thought leader. It’s time to show off a company’s top talent (after first ensuring that this talent is happy/engaged with company and has a solid non-compete clause) by requesting that these individuals write (or ghost write) white papers, blogs, etc and/or speak at relevant conferences so the company is known as “the” place to work. Invest in training these individuals in speaking in front of audiences and media. Once trained, these individuals will become talent magnets, especially if their social media pages say “Come work with us.”

7.  Security automation tools (translated to other talent needs). In the cybersecurity world, “security automation tools” are cloud-based or other types of automations. In the employee world, “security automation tools” are computers, robots, and artificial intelligence because they have now become cheap enough and smart enough to replace human beings. If you want tons of examples of how robots are replacing accountants, lawyers, recruiters, most manufacturing jobs, clerks, doctors, etc., read my blog Avoid Being Replaced…by a Computer, Robot, or AI and/or page 2 of my 2017 Overall Economic Employment Forecast —they’re real eye openers.

8.  Integrated solutions (translated to other talent needs). In the cybersecurity world, “integrated solutions” means using an off-the-shelf solution. In the employee world, it means knowledge-based shared services[ii], the next and newest level of the typing pool, which was probably the original shared service[iii]. It makes sense if relevant KPIs are established: if the work that needs to be performed can’t be automated and human beings with that talent are in short demand, then sharing those currently employed individuals’ services throughout the organization as much as possible is a viable solution.

9.  Share threat intelligence (translated to other talent needs). In the cybersecurity world, “share threat intelligence” means joining a community where the companies share what happened to them and what they did so as to help all prevent the next cyberattack. In the human capital world, sharing a person between companies means using a professional temporary or contract services firm. There are many outstanding ones, including Upwork, that manage the sourcing of top talent globally while providing payment, invoicing, and collaboration protocol platforms. Check out Upwork’s video to assess this type of option.

10.  Consider using security-as-a-service. “Security-as-a-service” translates into outsourcing when it comes to talent. There are numerous companies who specialize in providing specific in demand skills via their employee experts to assist companies with particular projects that require a very knowledgeable individual in a talent shortage area.

11.  Prevention. The best way to prevent having a talent shortage is retention and engagement of existing employees possessing those in-demand skills, because if they’re engaged, they will know who else in their field is good and would fit the corporate culture and these employees can then be a resource to attract and secure that additional talent when needed. A recent Harvard Business Review article on management behaviors that foster employee engagement[iv] proved that higher levels of oxytocin in a person’s blood increases employee engagement by 76%.

There are two ways to increase oxytocin levels: by administering doses of synthetic oxytocin into living human brains via a nasal spray or through building trust in others. Since the first method appears to be illegal, companies wanting to build employee engagement need to build trust as an integral part of employee relations.

For those companies not be interested in this 11th strategy, the Top 10 Talent Shortage Solutions should suffice in addressing talent shortages. That said, for those firms interested in building trust into their employee relations, in addition to a 76% employee engagement increase, high trust companies gain employees with 74% less stress, 106% more energy at work, 50% higher productivity, 13% fewer sick days, and 40% less burnout than those employees at low trust companies[v].

There will be Part III of THE TIDE IS TURNING: LABOR DEMAND EXCEEDING SUPPLY, which will consist of a handy reference list of the Top 10+ Talent Shortage Solutions described in the first two blogs in this series and a discussion for methods to build trust for those companies interested in this bonus 11th option.

The tide might have changed, but once a company has all 11 of these tools, there’s no possible way that company’s ship will become stuck in the mud because of the lack of the right rowers in their boat.


[i] “11 Strategies to Consider in Addressing the Cybersecurity Skill Shortage, by Alberto Yepez, RSA Conference blogs, 4/18/16.

[ii] “Knowledge-based finance functions in service delivery: Why the rewards can be well worth the risks,” Deloitte US,

[iii] “shared services,” by Margaret Rouse,,

[iv] “The Neuroscience of Trust: Management Behaviors that Foster Employee Engagement,” by Paul J. Zak, pages 84 – 90, Harvard Business Review,

January-February 2017.

[v] “The Neuroscience of Trust: Management Behaviors that Foster Employee Engagement,” by Paul J. Zak, pages 84 – 90, Harvard Business Review, January-February 2017.





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