RSPA Trusted Advisor Ep. 62: How VARs Can Help Merchants Solve Their Labor Crisis

In Episode 62 of “The Trusted Advisor,” the RSPA’s Jim Roddy talks with labor technology experts Audrey Hogan of ISV TimeForge and Barb Trushenski and Jeff Zimmerman of VAR North Country Business Products about how VARs are helping merchants solve their labor crisis. They discuss their joint report on grocery labor market trends, how to best start a labor tech conversation with a merchant, and which technologies are helping merchants improve their labor situation.

Additionally, this episode features a list of factors that, when combined, are causing the labor shortage across nearly all industries in North America:

  1. Government subsidies/unemployment aid
  2. COVID making workers reluctant to work in a face-to-face environment
  3. Abundance of entry-level remote jobs and warehouse jobs pulling workers from other industries
  4. Pay in those jobs is much higher – well above minimum wage
  5. Because of higher wages, some workers don’t need to work two jobs anymore
  6. Former part-time workers for multiple companies have been converted to full-time with only one company because of that employer’s labor shortage
  7. Childcare options are more limited than they were pre-COVID; and many parents don’t want to send their child to daycare with COVID still prevalent
  8. Some workers learned during the pandemic that family time was more important than their extra income
  9. Older people left the workforce during the peak of COVID and decided to not return
  10. Fewer teens need to work, and their parents don’t want them working with the general public during the pandemic
  11. Many workers returned to school during the pandemic and won’t return to the workforce until earning their new degree
  12. A family member is sick with COVID and the worker is caring for them
  13. The worker got sick with COVID and long-haul symptoms are preventing them from returning to their employer
  14. In the U.S., 200,000 people under age 65 passed away from COVID (you can assume many of them were active in the workforce)
  15. Immigration declined pre-COVID and more during COVID, so the immigrant worker pool is much smaller than normal
  16. Snags in the supply chain have disrupted the typical labor flow

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Watch Episode 62 now:

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Jim Roddy is the Vice President of Marketing and a Business Advisor for the Retail Solutions Providers Association (RSPA). He has been active in the POS channel since 1998, including 11 years as the President of Business Solutions Magazine, six years as an RSPA board member, one term as RSPA Chairman of the Board, and several years as a business coach for VARs, ISVs, and MSPs. Jim has been recognized as one of the world’s Top 100 Retail Influencers by RETHINK Retail, a Leading CannaTech Influencer by 420MSP, and is regularly requested to speak at industry conferences on SMB best practices. He is author of two books – The Walk-On Method To Career & Business Success and Hire Like You Just Beat Cancer – and is host of the award-winning RSPA Trusted Advisor podcast. For more information, contact