There is no doubt that we are in a candidate short marketplace. I recruit in the fields of HR, Sales, Marketing and Commercial Operations; over the last few months we have seen the pool of candidates become smaller and smaller until it is literally a puddle that only a small child could splash in.
The recruitment news are all proudly stating a rise in new vacancies, and unemployment rates in the UK are dropping. According to one article we are the envy of Europe as our growth is double, so everything should be perfect in the world of recruitment.
Not in all cases, it is still easy to find businesses who have been recruiting for months with no success. Managers at their wits end as their empty desks stay, well, empty. Companies who feel they could easily achieve their forecasted growth if only they could increase their headcount.
What is the problem?
The legacy of the recession still peers over us like a domineering parent. We all remember the credit crunch, the fear of redundancy, letting good people go.
We don’t want to face that situation again, we want to hire the very best to ensure growth is always upwards.
The problem is the very best is often determined by skill matching and finding an individual who can walk straight into the job and get on quickly. We are busy, training is tough, and it makes practical sense to recruit someone who can just crack on….
Of course it does. When I am hiring for recruiters, my dream is to find someone who has experience, ideally in the market sector we are recruiting for. Someone who will walk in on day one and start speaking to clients and filling jobs.
Truth is: there are not that many applicants like that out there.
By only looking for the ideal candidate means you potentially miss out the aspirational candidate, the one who is so keen to work for you that motivationally they will work harder than anyone else. The one who doesn’t quite tick your wish list but has the aptitude to be trained and is bright enough to develop quickly.
Changing your dreams, and making a hire
As a recruiter I often hear the phrase,
But I don’t have time to train…
But do you have time to continue surviving with an empty desk. Often it is the existing team and the line manager who has to cover the role until someone is hired, surely their time would be better spent training someone than covering….
I am not saying that recruiting people without any experience to come in and business develop key accounts for £200,000 projects or hiring a pure graduate to re shape HR policies is feasible. But perhaps looking at your current job descriptions and changing some of the must haves.
Does your open HR Business Partner role really need to have CIPD qualifications – or can you hire a great HR person and support them through their CIPD, giving them an incentive to join and stay with you.
Does your digital marketer need to have experience across every social media platform or can you teach them internally how to utilise the one’s they have not had exposure to?
Investing in people is a great way to retain your team and add value.
If you have been recruiting unsuccessfully for a while, have worked your way through recruitment agencies trying to find the right person, perhaps this is something to think about….