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Stay Competitive with these Talent Acquisition & Purchasing Strategies

Across all fields, the labor shortage is forcing companies to create more attractive ways of getting jobseekers to apply and retaining their current talent. The competition for high-quality employees continues to present challenges for HR and procurement teams. That’s why shifting to a new approach considering candidates' unique upper hand in negotiations can reignite your hiring results.


Business leaders are listening closely to what employees want and, in some cases, beginning to restructure the workplace. We’re seeing some companies increasing their wages and using bonuses and/or tuition assistance as an attraction tool. As procurement and HR teams work to identify solutions for the lack of labor, the employee experience is of high value. Your group purchasing organization (GPO) can give your company an edge and help your HR department attract and retain quality talent to keep your organization running successfully.  

Learn how to achieve effective, quick and low-cost solutions through the problem-solving power of a GPO.  

New Approach to Hiring & Retention

We’re in a candidate-driven market, and you’re adjusting hiring standards, developing a digital hiring experience and providing flexibility and control for prospective and current employees. These strategies can give you an advantage as companies are competing for the best job seekers in the pool.

Barb HeadshotTo gain a stronger understanding of how companies can find good talent and keep those employees working for them, we’ve gathered industry insight from OMNIA Partners VP, Partner Development – Corporate Services Barb Sexton. As both a GPO and HR subject matter expert, Sexton serves as the Executive Director of Global Women Procurement Professionals and stays up to speed on what both procurement teams and suppliers face. 

Sexton is tapped into the labor market and collaborates with GPO suppliers on strategic ways to solve the talent shortage through key factors in the human resources category, such as medical and pharmacy benefits, human capital management and payroll technologies, financial wellness and relocation programs, and services including background checks and drug screenings. Procurement can source these programs to attract, prepare and retain great talent. Part of this process is presenting candidates with options that make them confident they’re selecting the correct organization for their diverse needs, families and overall well-being.  

“Business leaders are working to empower their people through the employee experience,” says Barb Sexton. “Companies are increasing pay rates, providing a better insurance and benefits package, work environment, and I believe this all comes back to people and the value we place on people.”  

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Though technology is a helpful and efficient part of the hiring process, some argue that businesses may rely on it too much. There must be a balance to encompass the value of technology’s ease of use while maintaining a human connection. Providing a talent engagement and communication platform to stay connected to employees via text or email goes a long way. Personalizing the candidate’s journey, providing videos in their messaging, and texting the candidate with timely updates, keeps them engaged and in the loop. If the recruiter doesn’t respond fast enough (within 24 hours) to the initial application/related conversations or the hiring process is too long, the potential employee could lose interest and engage with a different company.  

“Candidates aren’t willing to wait around right now so creating a more efficient hiring process can help them stick around,” says Sexton. “Making sure you have a quick background check, a good relocation offer and the opportunity to work remotely or in a hybrid scenario are helpful ways for businesses to fill positions.” 

These key attraction and retention tools can be found through GPO suppliers specializing in HR solutions. As procurement and HR managers search for a strong staffing partner to help their business grow, leveraging group purchasing resources can bring solutions faster and more efficiently.   

Agility, diversity, quality, speed, savings in both time and money. Procurement teams can achieve these goals by taking advantage of the GPO team’s expertise in monitoring the market and suppliers. Though not an overnight fix to the labor shortage, procurement’s use of group purchasing is making a positive impact for many organizations through collaboration and creativity.  

What Your Company Can Do Right Now

To battle the Great Resignation, employers can take the following steps to keep employees engaged and motivated.  

Keep top performers engaged: Top performers are often the most susceptible to burnout. Focusing on career growth can help increase excitement about their job. Providing talent with long-term vision of their role at the company goes a long way.  

Recognize employees: A simple thank you can increase morale and ensure your team feels valued. Ask employees how they prefer to be recognized.  

Conduct stay interviews: These are informal reviews between a manager and employee. Discuss progress, solicit ideas and feedback to learn what really matters to your workforce. Stay interview questions include:  

  • What keeps you here, and is there anything that would entice you to leave? 
  • Are we fully utilizing your talents? 
  • What would you change about your current role if given the chance? 
  • Do you feel you’re making a difference in our company? 

Procurement's Leverage through Group Purchasing

Procurement is working with HR to deliver talent solutions, and purchasers don’t have to spend time negotiating contracts on their own to get the job done well. GPO contracts are negotiated with robust buying power and fully vetted solutions that can be used right away. Keep in mind the prices on those contracts are lower than an individual can achieve on their own.  

“Procurement and sourcing teams are leveraging relationships that OMNIA Partners has already established and cultivated over several years,” says OMNIA Partners VP, Partner Development – Corporate Services Barb Sexton. “These provide speed to savings, knowledge, and resources. You don’t have to hire anyone. You can just consult with us on what we’re seeing in the marketplace and at other member organizations.” 

Through a GPO partnership, procurement professionals have an opportunity to experience their role elevated and celebrated within their organization during even the most challenging situations.

For a more in-depth look at navigating the labor shortage, read our latest white paper The Procurement Strategy to Stay Competitive in a Tight Labor Market.