The past year has been a challenge for nearly every industry across the world. While manufacturing and non-essential services have taken the biggest hit, many other industries have also faced disruption due to COVID-19. Most companies start out every year with the intention of expanding their sales force in order to generate more revenue. Unfortunately, at this point, many organizations are struggling to retain their top talent amid the backdrop of a looming economic recession.
This blog explores the mortgage industry and recent trends worth noting.
- Continuing Prospects of Growth
- A Dearth of Talent
- Loan Officer Recruiting and Retention is Getting Harder
- Employers Need to Modify Loan Officer Recruiting Plans
Continuing Prospects of Growth
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, recruitment within the mortgage industry is set to reach its highest levels over the next ten years. In particular, we can expect loan officer recruitment to grow by nearly eight percent over the next decade. This is a much greater projected growth rate than most other occupations. The rationale behind this is simple: the more loan officers a mortgage firm has on its payroll, the more loans it can process at any given time, and the more revenue it can generate as a result.
A Dearth of Talent
While the US Bureau of Labor Statistics does project significant growth for the mortgage industry, there is still one major ongoing concern among businesses recruiting mortgage loan officers. Quite simply, there is a lack of available talent.
As far back as 2009, most leading executives within the financial services industry saw a shrinking talent pool as a threat.
In 2020, however, this shortage of talented individuals has reached a nearly-unprecedented scale. In fact, a 2019 CEO survey by PwC suggested that 76% of CEOs and executives in the financial industry now see talent shortage as an immediate and real threat to the industry. When there is a shortage of skills in the job market, it has a severe impact on industry growth for two very important reasons.
First, job innovation suffers because fewer people are available to encourage new processes and avenues of thought within the industry. Second, a dearth of skills in the market increases workforce costs. When candidates know there are not enough of them to go around, they are in a stronger position to negotiate higher salaries and benefits, to the detriment of employers.
Loan Officer Recruiting and Retention is Getting Harder
Mortgage recruiters understand that the markets can be cyclical, giving the industry a slightly transient feel. There is no denying that many players arise when the market is seeing an upturn; those same players tend to jump ship in a downturn. In an increasingly competitive hiring market, subject to increasing workforce costs and a shrinking talent pool, it is not surprising that recruiting and retaining is as hard as it ever has been.
Experienced candidates understand that they are in high demand. This immediately puts them in a strong position to get better employment remuneration and benefits for their expertise. On the other hand, it also makes them more likely to switch employers for any number of reasons. All the key players in the mortgage industry are competing for the same small talent pool.
Employers Need to Modify Loan Officer Recruiting Plans
In order to recruit better and more motivated talent, hiring managers need to be aware of the changing needs within the industry. For example, loan officers depend on technology support and expect it from their employer. When an employer offers them the right digital flexibility, it makes their jobs infinitely easier and more productive. Without the right technology support, many employees will find it harder to do their jobs and start searching for employers that offer the support they need.
Similarly, brand reputation is also a major factor in attracting the right talent. With careful work on your reputation in the marketplace, you can become a more appealing employer within your sector. Your company culture also plays a major role in differentiating you from your competition.
Perhaps the most important step hiring managers can take is to expand their candidate sourcing. The best way to do this is to work with the help of local or national financial staffing firms. An employer-based in Pittsburgh should coordinate with a staffing agency in Pennsylvania to source higher-quality talent. With access to their pool of candidates, chances of recruiting motivated talent improve significantly.