Layoff Reports: A Valuable Resource

Mar 7, 2001

I am sure many of you peruse or are sent layoff reports on a weekly basis from organizations such as Lee Hecht Harrison, AIRS, or But how many of you actually take advantage of this information? Well, if you are like many recruiters, it is hard to take action on the information that these reports provide because you probably don’t have an effective system in place to attract these recently or soon-to-be laid-off employees. Below are some ideas on how to more effectively use these reports to your advantage.

  1. Take inventory. The first step to effectively using layoff reports to help fill some of your tough positions is to look over the types of open positions that you currently have. Do any of them require e-commerce or Internet related experience? If so, now is the time to take advantage of the market. With so much downsizing in this sector, there hasn’t been a better time to snatch up some of these laid-off or soon-to-be laid-off employees. Even if your positions don’t require dot-com experience, taking stock of your openings will help you better understand what types of skill sets are required for your positions.
  2. Do your homework. Once you have identified the skill sets that are critical for your company’s openings, then it is important to do a little investigative work. Talk to your hiring managers to find out not only what companies these type of workers come from, but what industries as well. It is always helpful to know your competitors ? and I am sure most you know who they are ? but industry information can be very valuable as well. When you receive a layoff report, it is usually broken down by industry or sector. So if you know the industries to focus on, then you will be able to easily identify a company who may be laying off people who could be a good fit for your company.
  3. Don’t wait. Once you know your competitors and the industries you need to focus on, then it is important to take the time to use this information. These reports typically have the company name, location, type, and number of employees being laid off. If you receive these reports electronically, then there is also a URL of the company conducting the layoffs. Once you have identified a company that may be of interest to you, contact them immediately! If you wait, you may miss the boat. Usually, someone in the Human Resources department is in charge of layoffs, as well as outplacement. The contact within the company is usually more than willing to share information about displaced workers. In many cases, they may have resumes and or outplacement events. If you are able to obtain resumes of their laid-off employees, then you can judge for yourself if this is a viable recruiting resource.
  4. Make an appearance. I am not saying that you should race across the country to every outplacement event, but an onsite visit may not be out of the question. If a company is willing to share resumes of their displaced workers, or if a number of them look like solid fits for your openings, then maybe a trip would be well worth the cost. You can phone screen these candidates prior to making the trip to ensure that it is worth the time and money. If after talking to the candidates of interest, you determine that there are several viable candidates, then you and a hiring manager or two could make the trip. Think about it, if you are a laid-off worker and you have discussed an opportunity with a company and they are willing to come to you, how do you think that will look in their eyes? Also, if this company has just laid off some employees, the remaining employees will probably feel a bit uneasy about their future with their current employer. A personal appearance will give you and your company a chance to make a great impression on the recently laid off workers, but it will also make a great impression on the remaining employees that may be dusting off their resumes, just in case they are next.

As we all know, layoffs are not a pleasant experience for anyone. By using information such as a layoff report, you can hire quality candidates and help turn a negative experience into a positive one for people who have been laid off. <*SPONSORMESSAGE*>

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