OPINION: The silver lining of the Great Resignation

I’ve been in technology staffing for the last 13+ years and have seen a variety of market situations. From the start of my staffing career – during the Great Recession of 2008 through today during the Great Resignation – there have been quite a few changes in organizations’ hiring temperaments.

Strategic changes in hiring

Talent Acquisition strategies have seen massive swings in everything from attitudes toward academic credentials, employment gaps, and work-from-home policies to ping-pong and foosball tables in the break rooms. Nothing, though, could have prepared companies for what they are experiencing today.

Listening to the news with regards to the Great Resignation, one would think that the world has just decided to up and quit. And yes – many have chosen to take early retirement, make 180-degree career changes or leave less than optimal work environments.

However, is it all doom and gloom? From my perspective, the answer is no. There’s ALWAYS another side to the story….

The talent availability challenge

In my day-to-day discussions with hiring managers, the lack of available talent is at the top of their list of hiring hurdles.  I’ve always believed that there is a wealth of intelligent, hardworking individuals out there, but the status quo and personal situations have them in positions that are hard to break away from. For example, single mothers waiting tables, taking on as many shifts as possible just to make ends meet does not allow for a lot of opportunities to learn a new skill, get a certification or take an online course.

The silver lining

Over the last year, I have seen many in the service industry and other lower-income professions get their Agile certification, study data analytics, or take an online coding class because they’ve had the opportunity, time – and partially thanks to stimulus checks – the ability to make ends meet to improve their situation.

We’ve all heard the rare stories of those who have worked tirelessly to land a successful career pre-pandemic. Let’s be honest with ourselves though – most of those doors have been closed to those trying to break into better-paying jobs as they didn’t fit a particular mold or “check all the boxes.”

Today, with many mid-career professionals going into completely new lines of work, a unique situation has opened up, creating a large need for new talent. Those same individuals who did everything right to get a leg up (only to have the door slammed in their face) not only have a better chance of landing that life-changing position but are now being sought after by those same organizations. When you add in the changes in attitudes toward working remote or hybrid office policies, the door is opened even further to those whose home responsibilities prevented them from going to an office five days per week!

I have the utmost respect for those corporate talent acquisition professions as they are working tirelessly to fill those ever-growing number of open positions. That said, the reality of what we are collectively experiencing is forcing changes to a system that is long overdue for an overhaul. And these changes are providing the opportunity to some who have never imagined a better life for themselves, and for those they care about.

My plan? I’m staying put. The way I see it, as I advise organizations on their talent acquisition strategies, I have the responsibility to do everything in my power to make sure that this newly opened door stays propped open and accessible to those who want to walk through it!

P.S. If you are interested in helping people, have a passion for learning, and have an interest in technology or creativity – let’s talk! I’m hiring smart, hungry, high integrity professionals who are looking for a rewarding career in sales. You can connect with me on LinkedIn.


About the author

Steven Wright serves as a Regional Sales Manager for Synergis. Steve has had a career in technology, spanning more than 25 years.  He has always served in an advisory, and relationship development capacity, working within sales and business development groups for healthcare technology outsourcing, manufacturing, professional service, and, most recently, the staffing industry. In his free time, Steve enjoys learning about new and emerging technologies. This love of tech has helped him aid clients and candidates alike in their career and talent journeys.


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