The unmanned robotics industry is currently on the cusp of the next big push forward. We are all waiting for FAA regulations to catch up to the technology, fully aware that once that happens - we will be primed to take off into the next stage of development.
The problem is that in the meantime, most companies are doing everything they can simply to keep the lights on. It is a delicate balance, hiring a workforce that can keep your business afloat while lacking the ability to estimate when that business will truly be able to flourish.
Place a Premium on Quality: Sure, you need the general workforce to keep business going abroad while we wait to bring our workers home. But you also need engineers with innovative thinking who can take your business to the next level when the time comes. So when it comes to those higher-level positions, focus on quality rather than quantity, keeping just enough workers on staff to maintain the business, but hiring the best of the best so that when it is time to take off - you will already have your future leaders in place.
Offer Incentives for Multiple Deployments: There is a cost involved to hiring and training a revolving door of workers for the same jobs. High turnover is the nature of the beast when it comes to sending workers abroad, but it doesn't have to be something to which you completely resign yourselves. Offer incentives (whether that means bonuses, additional benefits or title promotions) to your workers willing to complete more than a single deployment.
Maintain Connections: In some cases, it may be better to hire contractors for the time being rather than full-time employees. Maintain connections with the best of those contractors and facilitate relationships that could turn into potential employment offers in the future. Most contractors understand the intricacies of the business and the limited full-time positions available today, but by fostering a solid working environment now you can set yourselves up as a first choice employer when those positions do start opening up.