There’s no question that the COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on all sectors globally, with job loss and furlough among the top consequences for employees. With many forced to work from home, the nature of work changed dramatically.
Recruitment was especially impacted by the pandemic, with the majority of businesses having to adjust their strategies throughout the crisis. With life now seemingly ‘normal’ again, we look at the recovery of the recruitment sector, and its future post-COVID.
The changing face of recruitment
Following the pandemic, recruitment and workplace trends have changed dramatically. Leaders are re-thinking their workforce and management style to keep pace with the large-scale shifts that are happening to businesses and the way people work.
One of the major changes in the world of recruitment is the rise of contingent and temporary workers. According to Staffing Industry, the number of temporary employees in the UK increased by 9.16 % on a seasonally adjusted basis to a total of around 1.71 million for the three months from October to December 2021, when compared to the same period the year before.
During lockdown periods, many organisations reduced their contractor budgets, but now there has clearly been a shift. Thanks to the rise of remote working, recruitment is no longer restricted to a location, which means recruiters have access to wider talent pools.
A new age of candidates
Before the onset of the pandemic, businesses were already recruiting in a highly competitive market and changes were on the horizon. Now, organisations are facing greater demands for benefits that focus on health and wellbeing, and flexible working. Recruiters will need to tailor their recruitment solutions to suit the needs of candidates in order to attract the same level of talent.
COVID-19 has to a large extent accelerated changes in consumer and employee behaviour, and there’s an increasing reliance on digital tools. According to McKinsey, 75% of European and North American executives that responded to a survey expect increased investment in new technologies until 2024.
Work-life balance is also another priority for today’s candidates, alongside long-term stability, which is more than likely a result of the uncertain financial situation caused by the pandemic.
What’s next for companies?
As businesses have started to recover and return to their offices, many professionals will be making changes in their careers and switching roles, enhancing the level of competition in the marketplace. The challenge for hiring managers lies in the ability to effectively sell the benefits of working for their company.
In the interview process, leaders should be differentiating themselves from other employers, focusing on areas such as culture and upward mobility. Now that millions of employees around the world have become accustomed to remote working, companies must offer flexible and hybrid working arrangements.
With 74% of current remote workers saying that having the option to work remotely would make them less likely to leave a company, the elevated importance of flexibility in the workplace is being continually reinforced.
Recovery and recruitment
So, how exactly can recruitment agencies adapt to the ever-changing market landscape? Firstly, recruiters need to regularly revisit and evaluate their recruitment strategy to assess their client organisation’s goals and make necessary adjustments based on market changes.
With the pandemic having paved the way for an even more transient workforce, today’s employees have a more varied approach to their careers. Recruitment agencies need to prioritise finding cultural fits and assure hiring managers that candidates who fit the culture will stay at the company long-term. M&A will be a priority as recruitment companies seek to protect their market positions in the face of ever-growing competition.
Recruiters will also need to be more consultative and showcase their expertise to attract the best candidates and focus on providing a seamless candidate experience by taking on board new digital technologies and processes.
Job roles continue to evolve, and leaders must make hiring the right talent a focal point of their strategy.
Helping your business to grow
At Petroplan we are the champions of talent and specialise in recruiting permanent personnel and contractors for businesses across the energy and infrastructure sectors, including oil and gas, renewables, technology, mining, power, and nuclear. As a talent solutions agency, we have an excellent knowledge of recruitment, and a team of experienced consultants who can provide the best advice, and results.
To find out how we can support you in the rapidly evolving climate, please contact our team today.