How to recruit in 2022

Nearly every business has seen recruitment become increasingly difficult in the last 2 years. This has been driven by a number of factors but the most prominent in their affect on day to day recruitment are Brexit and Covid. Brexit…

Blog26th Jul 2022

Nearly every business has seen recruitment become increasingly difficult in the last 2 years. This has been driven by a number of factors but the most prominent in their affect on day to day recruitment are Brexit and Covid.

Brexit has had the biggest impact on some industries, such as hospitality and seasonal workers and where the majority of roles are less specialised or highly skilled and could therefore be attractive to people who wanted flexibility and were not necessarily considering a long term role. These role have historically been filled by those who have enjoyed the flexibility of travelling and working across the EU with no restrictions on their ability to work in the UK.

The impact of Brexit is that those who were not already settled in the UK are now no longer able to work in the UK without the relevant visa or sponsorship from an employer. This was made much worse during Covid, where those who the UK is not their native home decided to travel back to families and friends in their home countries and were not able to return the UK post Covid restrictions.

In addition to this, Covid has dramatically shifted the way people think about the work they do and how they do it. For many, having had two years of working from home has meant that they have found a new way of working with much improved work-life balance and the opportunity to see more of their families because they are not making a daily commute.

For those who couldn’t work from home during the pandemic, many questioned the role that they did and whether this is what they wanted to do until they retired. A lot of people were affected by lockdowns and were placed onto furlough which gave them uncertainty about their role and their income. Many worry that this may be the case again and their job security feels fragile in this ‘new world’.

So what can you do to recruit successfully in this market?

There is no silver bullet to today’s recruitment challenges, no magic answer that will give you access to the perfect candidate. But there are some steps you can take to make your role as attractive as possible and to cast your recruitment net as wide as you can.

If your role is a computer based role, consider whether the role is able to be done remotely, either some of the time (a hybrid role) or all the time (a fully remote role). There is a misconception that people working fully from home won’t dedicate their full attention to the role or they may just be lazy. This is just not the case and if someone is really intent on being lazy, they’ll find a way to do it in the office too!

We recruit a lot of roles for our clients and the difference in the number and quality of applicants for hybrid or remote roles is significantly higher than for office/work based employees. For a start you’re fishing in a much bigger pond but people are actively seeking out hybrid roles if their current employer won’t offer it.
For those roles where it is not possible for the role to be done as a hybrid/remote role, consider other ways you can offer flexibility. That could be through offering Flexitime (where employees have to work a set of core hours but have some flexibility around their start and finish times.

Offering shifts flexible shifts can be another way to attract candidates who need to fit their lives around other commitments such as school picks up etc. Finding ways to give employees options is going to make the role more attractive.

Consider your benefits offerings – can you offer more to make your role and your business more attractive? Whilst all benefits have some additional cost, many aren’t as expensive as you may believe. Some benefits you may want to consider include:

  • Additional holiday – particularly useful for retention, offering people extra days for each year they work can be very attractive
  • Healthcare benefits – whilst private medical insurance is the more expensive of the offerings, it can be relatively inexpensive but in the current NHS crisis can be a very attractive employer benefit
  • Life Assurance – this is actually a very inexpensive benefit to offer your employees and again holds intrinsic value for your employees. Most people with a mortgage will have life insurance so having it through work can be attractive
  • Discount platforms – another inexpensive offering is one of the several employee discount platforms with some offering a permanent discount of up to 5% on their weekly supermarket food shop.

There are many other employee benefit options you can consider but hopefully the above gives you some ideas of what you can offer.

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