After a tumultuous 2020, it is hoped 2021 may see a return to normalcy – but what is normal may look a little different, especially in the world of recruitment.

The impact of the pandemic will leave its mark on businesses and how they recruit new talent for their teams. Remote working has proven to be perfectly possible in many industries and this is going to feature heavily in employer-employee conversations.


Firms that have found they can operate remotely may well seek to capitalize on this newfound freedom. This means they have a much wider potential talent pool open to them. They theoretically can employ the best worker regardless of that person’s physical location – in another state or even another country.

That said, it may not be as straightforward as it first seems. If a business has only operated in one state it may now find it has to consider different laws around employment for its new workers based elsewhere. For Ohio businesses, this could mean having employees in states that do not operate right-to-work laws, for example.


The remote interview may well be here to stay. First-round interviews have proven themselves to be quick, efficient, and convenient, now we have got the hang of sitting in front of a Zoom screen.

But as the vaccine rolls out, we will also see a return to the physical office environment. Second-round interviews are likely to make a return to being in-person. Employers and prospective employees want to see the business operation first-hand.

The widespread availability of a Covid vaccine and the opening up of state economies is expected to see a surge in the number of people actively seeking work. People are returning to the labor force after a pandemic period of unemployment or looking to pick up career plans that may have been on hold for a year. Incidentally, HR professionals may well have their work cut out for themselves in selection processes.

Social Responsibility

But 2020 was not just about the pandemic. There were societal pressures for businesses to respond to – issues like inclusion and social responsibility.

Forward-looking employers will need to look at their structures and systems with a much more critical eye. And additionally, look for problems they may not have realized they had. With regards to diversity in the workplace and underrepresented groups, human resources are the starting point as it is the gateway into the business.


And a token approach is not likely to be enough. Corporate cultures may need to change on a real and sustainable level as new employees are looking to genuinely connect with their new employer and be heard.

Transparency with potential recruits is likely to become part of the new normal. Just as employers often check a candidate’s social media for a fuller picture, so candidates are finding it even easier to get a more truthful understanding of a potential workplace as people share their experiences – good and bad – on forums such as Glassdoor. Firms must be ready and prepared to be honest from the get-go with candidates.