The national media are calling the economic comeback a “jobless recovery.” But that won’t last. As business and industry shakes off the effects of the recession and activity picks up, you’ll need good people - the best you can get - to shoulder the load and move your company forward.

The problem is, the better employees know this too. They remember the situation that was in place just a few years ago, when hiring experienced NDT professionals was made difficult by the demand for talent.

That’s why smart managers are starting to staff up now, early in the recovery, even before the workload builds. While this may fly in the face of the need to conserve cash, hiring now will save you significant resources in the long run.

By picking up the hiring pace now you’ll ensure that you get the “star” NDT professionals before it becomes a candidate’s market again. This gives you the opportunity to negotiate more favorable compensation packages, while giving you a leg up on the competition.

Key positions should be filled during this time, with a special focus on unique or hard-to-get certifications and skill sets. These people will be the ones most in demand as the economic engine recovers.

Finding these NDT stars is not a simple process. Some never came on the job market through the recession. Others may be “hiding” in other industries or another part of the country. The secret is to match up the right skills, certifications and experience with the needs you expect to have in the next few years.

Find and secure your talent now and you’ll be in a much stronger position to take advantage of the economic recovery as it builds momentum.