People Integration in Staffing Mergers & Acquisitions

It takes a lot of work before reaping the rewards of a successful merger. It’s common for a staffing firm’s workforce to feel a sense of instability during the transaction, which can affect regular operations. 

While many staffing business owners prioritize financial strategies and revenue growth during a merger, this is a crucial time to manage morale by creating a comprehensive plan for integrating teams. 

Improved collaboration, key talent retention, and mitigating M&A risks are just some of the reasons to prioritize people integration. 

Below are a few things to consider for integrating teams post-merger.

It Takes Time

Going through a merger or acquisition is usually a long journey, and any business would benefit from prioritizing people integration from the get-go. 

Early integration planning can help minimize disruptions in day-to-day operations and allows leaders to align company cultures. 

With much uncertainty in the air, rolling out an early people integration plan gives team members more time to process information and understand the changes in the organization.

Begin with Leadership

In some cases, the ability of a company’s leaders can be the main driver for acquisition. Retaining valued talent in critical roles is crucial to a successful merger. 

An M&A deal presents an opportunity to upgrade talent across the business, making it imperative to fill important roles with the right people. 

With a merger on the horizon, identify how roles will change once the deal closes. Define which personnel are critical to the business’s success and outline the value they bring to the combined company. 

These key leaders have the ability to influence a staffing firm’s recruitment and delivery teams, so it’s important to get them on board early on.

Prioritize Transparent and Empathic Communication

M&A deals come with many changes, so it’s only natural for internal teams to worry about stability and job security. 

People integration heavily relies on effective communication. Considering that this can be a disruptive and stressful time, it’s integral for leaders to actively listen and create a supportive work environment. 

Share as much information as possible to avoid misinformation while providing an open line for support for personnel that may need it. 

Transparent communication while remaining sensitive towards people is key to building trust and reducing uncertainty. 

Boost Morale and Celebrate Wins

Post-merger integration is challenging for employees due to changes in their work environment, day-to-day processes, and possibly even their role in the company. It’s natural for workforce morale to decline during this time, which could hamper productivity and business operations. 

Apart from consistent communication, empower team members by offering opportunities for career development with the new set-up. 

Motivate them to take ownership of their work by recognizing and rewarding excellent performance. Foster a positive company culture that encourages collaboration and teamwork through social activities. 

Celebrate wins no matter how small, and express gratitude for each member’s contributions to business success.

A company is only as good as its people, and an M&A deal’s success heavily depends on how they adapt post-merger. 

Comprehensive planning, communication, and the right leaders are critical during this time. A third-party M&A team can be pivotal in ensuring a smooth transition even before due diligence between two companies begins. 

Work with M&A advisors with niche expertise that can help find target partners whose cultures and values align, apart from providing financial benefits.


Eric Allison

Eric Allison is the CEO of Staffing Venture Capital, an investment firm and business accelerator with a focus on the staffing and recruitment industry. He can be reached at

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