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The candidate rich, job poor myth

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​According to the ONS, unemployment is currently at 4.8%, and is forecast to continue rising as high as 6% as the Job Retention Scheme (aka furlough) winds down at the end of September. Their report published in January 2021 estimated there were 578,000 vacancies in the UK in Q4 of last year. That is 224,000 fewer than a year ago, which makes sense given that redundancies were at a record high of 14.2 per thousand people in November.

But despite all of this, the number of vacancies in May 2021 was 58% higher than May 2020. Growth in average pay also increased by 4.4% in the first quarter of 2021. Surely this indicates a recovery in the job market?

The truth is, the figures are skewed. The sectors most impacted by the pandemic - hotels and restaurants, shops, and entertainment - have seen the largest numbers of jobs lost and whilst these roles are seeing huge numbers of applications, everyone else seems to be staying put. Broadbean Technology revealed a 34% drop in the number of people applying for jobs in December 2020 compared to the same time in 2019.

We’ve had the same experience – applications are down across all sectors, and many people are saying they simply aren’t willing to look at a new role until the economy settles down. Despite the overwhelming unemployment levels, there simply aren’t enough active candidates to meet employers’ demands.

So, what can you do about it? Read on for our top 3 tips.

Headhunt passive talent

We’re tapping into passive candidates in our network to fill roles. This means hours of searching for the ‘perfect fit’ and reaching out. It’s a long process, but sometimes the best person for your business is already in a secure role and a new challenge might tempt them into new opportunities.

(insert agency roadmap)

Tap into your network

Most of our day is spent on the phone, talking to our network. Building relationships is key to successful recruitment, where your talent pipeline is as important as your financial pipeline. You never know who can put you in touch with who, and we’re placing most candidates thanks to referrals and recommendations.

(insert a recommendation)

Optimise your employer brand

Investing in your employer brand is a vital step in making your business stand out against others who are looking to tap into the same talent as you are. We spend a lot of time with our clients discovering what makes their business tick, and how it is unique to anywhere else. We often find that these details are what secures them the candidate they want after the final stage interview.

For more insights on optimising your employer brand, check out these blogs:

·       Marketing Your Employer Brand

·       How To Develop Your EVP

·       From EVP to IVP


If you don’t have the internal capacity, this is where people like us can really add value. We are specialist head-hunters who are passionate about telling a client’s story to the network we’ve built over our *cough* years in the field. We’re always around to chat it through over a virtual coffee, so don’t hesitate to reach out and pick our brains!

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