Julea: Welcome to “The Animal Health and Veterinary Employment Insider,” brought to you by The VET Recruiter. In this podcast, Animal Health thought leader and executive recruiter, Stacy Pursell provides insight and practical advice for both employers and job seekers in the Animal Health industry and Veterinary profession. The VET Recruiter’s mission is to help Animal Health and Veterinary employers hire top talent, while helping animal health and veterinary professionals attain career-enhancing opportunities that increase their quality of life.
In today’s podcast episode, we’ll be talking about the importance of being an Animal Health or Veterinary technology organization. Hello, Stacy, and thank you for joining us today.
Stacy: Hello, Julea. As always, I am glad to be here with you.
Julea: Stacy, we address the employee or job candidate side of the equation quite a bit on this podcast, but today we are addressing the employer side, is that correct?
Stacy: Yes, that’s correct.
Julea: What was the catalyst for you to address this topic?
Stacy: As you well know, we recently conducted a series of podcast episodes titled, “What the COVID-19 Pandemic Has NOT Changed About the Marketplace.” I started thinking about some of the things that the pandemic HAS changed, and today’s topic was one of the results.
To recap, there are a couple of major things that the pandemic has not changed for employers. First, the top job candidates in the marketplace still exist. The pandemic has not changed that. And second, employers must still do everything they can to engage these candidates effectively if they want to successfully hire them.
And during our most recent podcast episode, we did talk a little about what the pandemic has changed.
Julea: I recall Stacy. We talked about how the pandemic has created opportunity for those operating in the Animal Health industry and Veterinary profession. It was good to hear some positive news!
Stacy: Yes, that’s right! First, pet adoptions are on the rise. This is because people have been staying home more, and as a result, more of them have been opting for pet ownership for feelings of increased companionship. And second, since people are staying home with their pets more, they’re getting in tune with their animals and their well-being. Because of that, they’re committing themselves to taking their pets to the veterinarian for preventative care checkups more often.
Ultimately, what this means is that there is still a demand for veterinarian care in this country, and it appears as though the COVID-19 pandemic is contributing, at least in part, to an increase in that demand.
Julea: How does that tie into what we are discussing today?
Stacy: Not only is the pandemic contributing to opportunity in the employment marketplace and job market, but it’s also serving as a catalyst for evolution.
Julea: What does that mean, exactly?
Stacy: Basically, the pandemic is accelerating trends that were already underway in the employment marketplace and the job market. One of those trends involves remote working conditions. There were people working remotely before the pandemic, but it was the exception rather than the rule. Now, as many people as possible are working from home. Of course, not every person has a job that will allow them to do so, but for those who have a job conducive to remote work, they’re choosing that option.
More than likely, we would have eventually reached a point where everyone who could work from home did work from home, but before the pandemic, that might have been years away, if not decades.
Julea: But you are saying Stacy that the pandemic sped up the timeline?
Stacy: That’s right, it did. It’s doing the same thing with telemedicine. Before the pandemic, there were people who chose telemedicine options when they were sick. Many more people are choosing that option now. In addition, telemedicine has become more common in the Veterinary profession. Veterinarians can now use a video examination to diagnose pets and then prescribe the appropriate medicine.
In fact, our firm, The VET Recruiter, recently received its first job order for a full-time telemedicine veterinarian. I expect to see more of these types of jobs around telemedicine popping up, and it makes perfect sense that they would.
Julea: We are also in a recession right now, aren’t we? Isn’t that having an effect on the marketplace, as well?
Stacy: It certainly is, but as we discussed during our most recent podcast episode, the Veterinary profession has not been affected as seriously as the broader marketplace and certainly not as much as some industries, like the hospitality and travel industries. The need to hire has not stopped for many Veterinary employers. However, their hiring needs are evolving and changing with the times.
Julea: And that evolution includes technology?
Stacy: Yes, it does. The COVID-19 pandemic is placing an extraordinary emphasis on technology. That’s because it’s presenting challenges that can only be met with technology. That is why employers are conducting video and virtual interviews and making offers of employment to candidates that they have never met. Animal Health and Veterinary organizations are relying heavily upon technology and technological tools to adapt to changing marketplace conditions. They’re doing this mainly to survive and thrive under what are sometimes difficult and challenging circumstances.
However, there is another reason why employers should strive to be an Animal Health technology or Veterinary technology organization.
Julea: What reason is that?
Stacy: Because that is how you can attract and ultimately hire the top candidates in the marketplace. Being a technology organization is yet another way that you can become an “employer of choice,” and as we’ve discussed on numerous occasions, just about all candidates want to work for an “employer of choice.”
The very best candidates—the top 5% to 10%—are well aware of what is happening in the marketplace and what the pandemic is doing to transform it. As a result, they want to work for those employers that can show they’re “ahead of the curve” and taking advantage of the opportunities that the pandemic is creating.
Julea: It is kind of like the old saying that people want to play for a winner.
Stacy: Yes, it’s exactly like that! I have an example that we’ve used before, but it seems appropriate to use it here again. That example involves the National Football League. Right now, the NFL is preparing to play this season. We have no idea if that will actually happen, but if it does, then the New England Patriots will be considered contenders, even without Tom Brady.
During the past 20 years, the Patriots have won a lot of games. In fact, it seems as though they play in the Super Bowl just about every year. Because of this, the Patriots have become a desired destination for many top players. The reason is simple. They want to play for the best and they want to give themselves a chance to play in the Super Bowl before their career is over.
And this is the first of five reasons why top talent is attracted to Animal Health and Veterinary technology organizations. This speaks to employer branding. As an employer, you want candidates to see you as a forward-thinking organization and as an “employer of choice.” That’s the ultimate goal of employer branding.
Essentially, when an Animal Health company or Veterinary practice brands itself as an “employer of choice,” it’s really branding itself as a winner.
Julea: What are the other reasons?
Stacy: Another reason that top candidates are attracted to technology organizations is flexibility. Candidates in today’s marketplace crave flexibility. In fact, they were craving it even before the pandemic started. These candidates know that a technology organization might offer more of it. It’s a simple equation in their minds: more technology equals more flexibility.
A third reason is productivity. It should come as no surprise that top candidates want to succeed. That’s one of the things that makes them top candidates in the first place. They want to succeed wherever they go, so that’s what makes technology so important from their perspective. They want to work for an employer that will provide them with all of the tools, including technology tools, that will help them to do their jobs better.
And all of this leads to our fifth and final reason.
Julia: What reason is that?
Stacy: The final reason that top candidates are attracted to technology organizations is stability. This is also a reason that makes perfect sense. After all, people crave stability in both their personal and their professional lives, especially during times like these.
Let’s face it: there has been a ton of uncertainty and instability in the country and around the world in 2020, and there is still plenty of the year left. Taking all of that into consideration, top candidates are more likely to be confident that an “employer of choice” will offer a stable employment situation and working environment, especially one that places an emphasis on technology.
Julea: Stacy, what about the younger generations? We haven’t discussed them yet today, but don’t Millennials and Gen Z candidates gravitate more toward technology than other candidates?
Stacy: Yes, and I was just about to bring that up, so thank you for asking that question!
As I’m sure our listening audience knows, the Millennial Generation comprises the majority of the United States workforce. Millennials grew up with technology. As a result, they expect technology to be present in their daily lives. Not only that, but they also expect to be living on the “cutting edge” of technology. It’s almost as if they consider technology to be part of their identity and who they are. And believe it or not, the members of Generation Z, the generation after the Millennials, hold these attitudes to an even greater degree.
So as an Animal Health or Veterinary employer, you can NOT ignore technology. Instead, you must embrace it, probably more than you have done so already. This means knowing what technology tools are available, knowing about the advances in both medicine and machinery, and staying up-to-date regarding current trends and possible emerging trends.
Julea: It seems like a lot of work Stacy.
Stacy: It IS a lot of work, but it takes hard work to successfully recruit and hire the best candidates in the marketplace. And just because we’re in the midst of a pandemic and a recession does not mean that employers don’t have to try as hard to hire the best candidates. It’s just as difficult now as it’s ever been, if not more difficult, and employers should make the necessary adjustments and plan accordingly.
Julea: Stacy, we are just about out of time. Is there anything else that you’d like to add before we end today’s episode?
Stacy: Yes, there is. Animal Health and Veterinary employers should analyze how they stack up in terms of technology. They should ask themselves what they can offer to top candidates in the way of advantages and benefits related to their professional lives and their careers.
What if candidates ask about these things? How would an employer respond to their questions? Ideally, employers should figure out the areas in which they are lacking and remedy the situation before candidates ask questions that they can’t answer. Because if you can’t answer job candidates’ questions about technology, then those candidates are not going to consider your organization an “employer of choice.”
The bottom line is that despite the pandemic and everything that it has affected, the marketplace is not standing still. It’s actually accelerating rapidly and evolving . . . and Animal Health and Veterinary organizations should be doing the same thing!
Julea: Stacy, this is all great information and thank you for sharing it with our listening audience today. For our listening audience be sure to check out all of the animal health jobs and veterinary jobs on The VET Recruiter website today. We have posted a number of new jobs on The VET Recruiter site today. The website address for The VET Recruiter is www.thevetrecruiter.com. Stacy, as always, thank you for joining us today.
Stacy: It has been my pleasure Julea. I look forward to our next episode of the Animal Health and Veterinary Employment Insider!