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COVID Vaccinations’ Role Within US Staffing Industry – SIA


SIA is one of the worlds leading advisors on all things staffing and workforce solutions. They conduct multiple webinars on the hour covering a variety of topics, applicable for many businesses. The US Staffing Industry Survey Report is one of the latest and most prevalent industry reports for us at Talent Group. This report speaks to COVID-19’s impact across all industries and explores the effects of the COVID-19 vaccine.

It is important to note the type of staffing firms that provided the most data: temporary staffing firms with revenues between $11-200M (classified as mid-level in this report), covering multiple regions. With 142 staffing firms within IT, Healthcare, and Commercial industries participating in the survey, SIA was able to gather, present, and project data on how staffing firms have done in the last year and what their outlook is for the remainder of the year and beyond.

COVID-19’s impact on the world in its entirety in the last 18+ months is undeniable. In accordance with the virus, the vaccine has since carved out its portion of headlines since first being released in January and is now a mainstay in the workplace for many companies. When SIA asked if staffing companies “have clients that are requiring or expressing a preference to have temp workers that are vaccinated for COVID,” only 54 of the 142 responded – 48% (26 responses) of which indicated their clients were now expressing such requirements/preferences.

As expected, there is a variance among the industries surveyed with healthcare naturally being the industry with the highest response rate in favor of requiring the vaccine. According to the report, if you work in healthcare and are not yet vaccinated you cannot work at 70% of all healthcare locations as of June 2021. On the contrary, within the IT industry there is a different trend being observed. Of the previously mentioned 54 firms that responded to this question, 13 of them were IT firms, 5 of which declared they are not yet requiring or preferring vaccination. Many, however, are incentivizing their employees to get the vaccine while following state mandates regarding masks, capacity, and distancing.

Below is a broader overall breakdown of vaccination preferences, as of June 2021: 

  • 39% of clients require temporary workers to be vaccinated. 
  • 25% of temporary workers are at firms with vaccine requirements.
  • Median of 55% of temporary workers are vaccinated.
  • Median of 75% of workers in healthcare are vaccinated.
  • Median of 44% of clients across all industries require the vaccination.
  • 64% of large company clients ($200M+) require the vaccination.
  • 35% of medium company clients ($11-200M) require the vaccination.
  • 30% of small company clients (<$11M) require the vaccination.

While analyzing the importance companies are placing on the vaccine, SIA also shared findings on detailed revenue growth and business trends over the past year. Revenue is the core of all important decisions a company makes, and COVID-19 has made it very difficult for some businesses to navigate that decision-making process. Our world in June 2021 looks a lot different than it did in June of 2020 and it is no different in the year over year (Y/Y) revenue growth report.

Staffing firms in the 75th percentile reported over a 100% Y/Y revenue growth in direct hire and staffing firms in the 50th percentile reporting a 55% growth. However, these numbers did not come about without some gut-wrenching moments. Regarding all industries of staffing firms, in December 2020 a median of 10% of firms reported a positive Y/Y revenue growth – with 33% of IT staffing firms and 25% of life sciences firms reporting growth. In contrast to May 2021, a median of 79% of all staffing firms reported growth – with IT reporting at 68% and life sciences reporting at 55%.

A lot of the fluctuation presented can be attributed to the hardship placed on recruiting during the pandemic. Recruiting is the backbone of staffing and, as such, has really taken the brunt of the strain within the staffing industry. Between getting candidates to accept offers, health and safety protocols, government assistance disincentivizing work, and, more recently, a highly competitive market where candidates have options, recruiting has not had its shortcomings of obstacles. That observation is supported by SIA’s data, noting that since they began tracking recruiting difficulty in December 2013, June 2021’s recruiting difficulty is at its highest level in that period, clocking in at a 3.78/5 (3.3/5 in June 2020).

Throughout the process of digesting and discovering how this information can be useful for your company, make sure to always do your own research to make the decision you feel the most confident in. Talent Group is consistently working with our clients to abide by their preferences and building stronger relationships in the process. We owe our recruiters a big thank you for their continued hard work throughout the last year and in their successes in the next year.

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