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The gig economy may be key to overcoming staffing shortages

For a lot of us, the pandemic shifted the way we see work for good. More people began to embrace flexibility and seek out new working options.

But flexibility is something that’s been at the heart of the ethos for temporary staffing platform GIG long before the pandemic.

Flexible shift work app GIG means for candidates that there are no requirements for working 9-5, 5 days a week. Instead, they’re able to choose when they work and where they work, as much or as little as they like. That means candidates could be working as a Warehouse Operative one day, and serving behind a bar the next.

The new campaign features, Dave, the star of GIG’s new Sky Go ad campaign, and he does exactly that. Dave picks the gigs that work for him, from warehousing, to hospitality, to events – meaning he’s got time to spend with the people who matter.

In a post-pandemic, skills short economy, flexible working has become more than a buzzword, it’s essential to the future of staffing.

TALiNT International has reported time and time again that candidates in the job market are continuously looking for flexible working options; those jobs that allow candidates to work around their studies, caring responsibilities or if they merely want to spend quality time with their family. But flexibility doesn’t just have to be for those looking at part time hours either as this could result in lower pay. With GIG potential candidates can still work full time, when and where they want. For instance, workers joining the GIG hub model may work full time 6 days a week, with many opting to work away at GIG’s warehouse partners, supplying some of the UKs biggest retailers.

The gig economy hasn’t always had a good reputation, but GIG shows that this flexibility doesn’t have to come at a cost. Their workers are guaranteed the basic rights that other gig economy providers often miss, such as holiday pay, and they push all their partners to offer well above minimum wage rates.

Antony Woodcock, MD of GIG commented: “Flexible working can offer a diverse range of opportunities for all, and that it doesn’t just have to be something that [fills a gap]. The whole concept behind the campaign is to showcase the opportunities that flexibility with GIG can bring. If you don’t want to be tied down to a single job, working hours that don’t fit your life, then there is another option. If you’re looking for regular shifts, training and experience to be able to build a career, that’s also something you can achieve with GIG.”

For businesses, there are clear gains to be made too ­– flexibility is not only a vital way to deal with the peaks and troughs that an increasingly unpredictable world throws their way, but it may also be the key to unlocking the talent needed to overcome staffing shortages.

With both businesses and workers being hit by recent increases in the cost of living, flexible solutions such as GIG can be a much-needed lifeline.

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Employees avoid working from home due to concerns over increase in energy costs

A new report published by Global expenses app, ExpenseOnDemand, shown that as the cost-of-living crisis starts to impact millions across the UK, travel expense claims are surging, as employees start to reduce time working at home to keep energy bills down. The data revealed that mileage and travel expense and claims have increased by 21% while entertainment claims by 15% showing that employees are spending more time out visiting contacts, clients, and colleagues.

According to the report, the trend for working from home is starting to shift as employees are leaving the house to keep energy costs down, however, the cost of the commute to the office doesn’t make going back to the workplace a viable option. Hence, many employees are focussed on meeting and entertaining clients and contacts as a way to spend time away from their home office during the working week. For those with cheaper commutes, many are heading back to the office for the majority of the week and this trend is expected to continue throughout winter.

Sunil Nigam, Founder at ExpenseOnDemand, commented, “We could be looking at a situation where workers want to spend more time meeting clients or in the office to better manage their domestic energy and electricity costs.

This trend is naturally causing a surge in employee expenses. Companies need to ensure they are equipped to manage claims and also monitor dubious expense claims, as employees may try to increase their income. We use advanced tech solutions to make managing expenses seamless, minimise bogus claims and help our clients ensure they aren’t overpaying on expenses.”

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69% of employees feel as though they have a good work/life balance

According to research from HR software company Personio, has found that HR teams are most at risk of budget cuts, with half (52%) of HR managers stating that their HR department often loses out most when budgets are trimmed, and a further 55% already having seen budgets cut, or expecting cuts, in the coming months.

As tougher economic conditions loom, contracting HR budgets could significantly limit UK businesses’ performance and their ability to remain resilient.

Also, despite much talked about concerns about staff retention, 50% of UK HR managers reported that their senior leadership team doesn’t prioritise their employees with 56% saying the business doesn’t place enough value on the HR function.

With the research revealing that only just under a quarter (24%) of UK HR managers feel that they are prepared to help their business remain resilient in an economic downturn. In its report Personio advised businesses to avoid sudden HR department budget cuts and short-term decision making that could potentially damage organisational competitiveness, employee morale and productivity, just when businesses need it most.

Ross Seychell, Chief People Officer at Personio, commented: “HR should be even more of a priority now, not less. Successful businesses put their people and culture as central to critical business operations, one that will protect their company, and their customers in tougher times.

“We’ve just come out of a period when many employers have thrown everything but the kitchen sink at their people in an attempt to hang onto them. If they are not thoughtful before they rush to scale back efforts now, their teams will realise it was never really about making their business a great place to work at all. Businesses need to foster a sustainable, long-term approach to looking after their talent, one that works in both good times and more challenging periods.

“But this more strategic HR role can only be achieved when organisations have the technology, data and systems in place that free HR managers up to focus on their people while providing them with the insights they need to be effective. Budgets may be under threat, but people strategy is an area that absolutely must remain a focus.”

The research, which surveyed 500 HR professionals and 1,000 workers across the UK and Republic of Ireland, found that as businesses have prioritised the employee experience during the recent pandemic, positive progress has clearly been made by HR teams with 69% of employees feeling as though they have a good work/life balance, and 73% rating their company culture as good.

Yet the research also highlighted the HR functions’ concerns that budget cuts will be detrimental to employee performance, with 61% of HR managers concerned that budget cuts will negatively affect employees’ motivation and productivity – putting HR’s valuable work and progress at risk.

And with HR managers citing a good company culture (38%), a sustainable, long-term approach to people strategy (37%), and efficient processes (37%) as the top three most important factors in navigating an economic downturn, it’s clearly never been more important that HR departments are equipped with the tools and financial support that they need.

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The Top 100 Staffing Companies issue of TALiNT International is out now! This latest edition of the go-to read in the total talent ecosystem is a true collaboration that not only celebrates the incredible growth that staffing firms have yielded over the last year, but is also a culmination of commentary and insight from members of TALiNT Partners’ membership programme, guest contributors and more.

The jewel in this crown is most certainly the the Top 100 Staffing Companies rankings. TALiNT Partners ranked staffing firms in the UK according to turnover and they’re delighted to see several TALiNT Partners members come out on top!

We spoke to Ben Kaminsky, Founder and CEO of EVA.AI | Powering HR 4.0, and discussed the conversational and predictive AI that engages users from a friendly process automation platform that personalises the digital experiences of candidates.

Other features include Harnessing the hidden workforce which unpacks how recruiters can bring more marginalised talent into the workforce and help employers remove unnecessary barriers to more diverse, resilient, and loyal talent; how DE&I has become an important differentiator for recruiters and why ESG is fast moving to centre stage for recruiters and their clients and much more.

Read the full magazine here: https://hubs.ly/Q01m_cXL0

This issue of the magazine will also be printed in limited numbers and distributed to our members and delegates at the World Leaders in Recruitment Summit on 13th of October.

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Can employers help the UK sleep better?

According to Nuffield Health’s latest research, 74% of UK adults have reported a decline in quality sleep over the past 12 months and a further 10% are only sleeping for 2-4 hours per night. More than 50% don’t believe that quality sleep builds immunity.

The survey of 8,000 UK adults has highlighted that the number of people experiencing insomnia increased to one in four, following the pandemic. Google searches for ‘insomnia’ skyrocketed and most searches happened in the early hours of the morning.

The research revealed that 35–44-year-olds get the least sleep, with almost 50% getting only 5-6 hours per night. A mere 33% of respondents get the recommended 7-8 hours of sleep per night.

Sleep deprivation is though to cost the UK economy £37 billion a year in lost productivity due to poor sleepers having reduced reaction times and trouble concentrating, increasing the likelihood of accidents and costly mistakes. Chronically disrupted sleep increased the risk of work absence by 171%.

The evidence indicates that there is both a need and an opportunity to help workers improve their sleep hygiene. Nuffield Health advises employers who wish to enhance sleep quality amongst their workforce:

Outline expectations – Employers need to define expectations, such as work hours, to encourage better sleep patterns. Avoid scheduling early morning or late evening calls, and let employees know that they are not expected to respect to respond to emails outside of working hours.

Train for triggers – Managers need to learn to spot the signs of sleep-deprived workers, such as mood swings, poor attention, distraction, copious amounts of coffee and yawning. Once spotted, a line manager should be trained to guide co-workers to access the relevant occupational health services available. Understanding that sleep support is essential and should be incorporated into the company’s values.

Promote physical health – Employers must emphasise the benefits of exercise in regulating sleep patterns. For example, going for a run or brisk walk during lunch hours provides exposure to natural daylight which, in turn, promotes healthy sleep hormones.

Employers can also provide advice around nutrition and caffeine to help individuals make healthier choices.

Offer specialist support – The stresses of everyday life, such as finances, addiction, or family problems can negatively impact sleep quality.

When employees see signs of emotional difficulty, the affected individuals should be directed towards the relevant emotional wellbeing support available to them, such as cognitive behavioural therapy or employee assistance programmes.

Employers can also consider additional support, for example, inviting a sleep specialist to run an online seminar on best practice habits before bed, such as avoiding blue light devices and keeping the bed for sleep only.

Gosia Bowling, National Lead for Emotional Wellbeing Nuffield Health, commented: “Many businesses have adopted a ‘hybrid’ approach to working and it’s important to note this ‘new normal’ won’t automatically facilitate perfect sleeping patterns. That’s why it’s crucial employers ‘wake up to sleep’ and work with their healthcare providers to support their workforce.

“Taking a holistic view on health – including offering interventions that cover the full range of risks – is the only way to get back to maximum wellbeing and create a healthier nation.”

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Contractors will once again be responsible for determining their employment status

Big news came for the contractor workforce last week when Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng used the mini-Budget 2022 to repeal IR35 reform in both the public and private sectors, stunning and delighting the contractor sector in equal measure.

Mr Kwarteng said IR35 reform had imposed “unnecessary cost and complexity” for “many businesses,” so it will be repealed, “as promised by Prime Minister, Liz Truss.

In fact, during her campaign, Liz Truss only promised that the off-payroll rules would be reviewed, however that’s not stopping the contractor sector celebrating that all IR35 status decisions will be reverting to them from April 2023.

At chapter 3.44 of Mr Kwarteng’s Growth Plan, the government states: “From this date, workers providing their services via an intermediary will once again be responsible for determining their employment status.

“And [they will be responsible for] paying the appropriate amount tax and National Insurance contributions.

“This will free up time and money for businesses that engage contractors, that could be put towards other priorities.”

Matt Fryer, Managing Director at Brookson Group, a People2.0 company, commented on what this means for recruiters. He said: “The U-turn will be welcomed by recruiters as it removes a significant compliance risk form their business and their clients. This should help to unlock the potential of flexible workforces at a time of increasing demand for highly skilled temporary workers, particularly in industries such as IT, engineering and energy. It does not, however, remove all compliance risk from resourcing contingent workers.”

Neil Carberry, CEO at REC also commented: “It is not enough to simply tear things down though – we also need to build. On IR35, retained European regulation, investment zones and infrastructure there is hard work to do on replacement rules, and in some cases little time to do it. Business is ready to help – but we will need action from Government to make things happen. Nowhere is this truer than on skills, where the failure to reform the failed Apprenticeship Levy continues to hold back employer training investment. Reforming the Working Time Directive allows us the opportunity to preserve rights on holidays, breaks and working weeks while removing the administrative nightmare faced by firms in calculating how they comply with the current rules, which were not designed for today’s economy. But we need to move quickly to do this, given the chaos that has been created by some recent court judgements.

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64% of candidates say that poor communication post-interview makes them less likely to accept a job offer

Data from research published by Breathe, HR software provider for SMEs has revealed interesting shifts in mindset amongst different workforce generations. Company culture is a top priority when job hunting, particularly amongst the younger generation of 18 – 34-year-olds, who are more likely to consider this than those aged 55 and over. It also uncovered people are focused on protecting themselves against burnout, with an overwhelming 81% stating they would not apply for a role that had unrealistic expectations. The younger generation of workers value strong communication, with 78% saying they would be put off a job listing that didn’t include salary expectations. Interestingly, 74% of over 55-year-olds cited no salary listing as an issue.

Key findings included:
Company culture a top priority

  • Workers aged 18 – 34 are more likely to consider company culture – 86%
    – Compared to those working aged 55 and over – only 66%
  • Interestingly, 18 – 34-year-old workers are more likely to ask about company culture in an interview than workers over 55
    – 81% vs 57%
  • 70% of UK workers say evidence of a good company culture is important when thinking about looking for another role
    – 83% say flexible working – a response to working habits formed during the pandemic
    – Interestingly, nearly a quarter of workers (24%) said that career development opportunities are not as important to them
  • Over three quarters of UK workers (76%) say they consider company culture to some degree when choosing where to work
    – 13% say it is the top factor for them
    – 41% say it is a key factor they consider

Lack of communication is a big turn off

  • A lack of communication post-interview was the top factor from an interview that would make workers less likely to accept any job offer from a company (64%). This was followed by:
    – Overly selling the company in the interview (57%)
    – Not meeting the people you would work with (51%)
  • 78% of 18 – 34-year-olds would be put off by a job listing that didn’t include a salary
    – Compared to 74% of over 55-year-olds

Protecting against burnout

  • An overwhelming 81% say they would not want to apply for a role if it had a job description with unrealistic expectation
    – This is followed by having no salary listed (77%) and non-specific descriptions of the role (75%)
  • 53% say they would be less likely/never would apply for a role that didn’t mention company culture

Rachel King, UK General Manager at Breathe, commented: “It’s no secret that company culture hasn’t always been a top priority when looking for a new job. Yet, following the pandemic and with hybrid and flexible working now the norm, more and more interviewees are placing emphasis on the type of workplace culture they want to be a part of.

“Our research found that the next generation of employees is entering the workforce with different expectations. Following a gruelling past few years they want to manage burnout with realistic job expectations and work for businesses that have a positive company culture – two areas which have not traditionally been priorities for previous generations.

“It’s more important than ever for SMEs to stay competitive in a candidate-led job market. They need to ensure they are supporting the needs of new people entering the business and fostering a strong company culture to attract and retain the best talent possible.”

Lizzie Benton, Company Culture Coach and Founder at Liberty Mind also made comment: “It’s becoming clear that getting paid every month is no longer the only draw to working. People want more from work than just a fair wage. Now more than ever people are seeking opportunities that provide a work-life balance and an enjoyable working environment.

“That’s why it’s up to businesses to build a culture that truly puts people-first in order to create the best workplaces possible. There are many simple, actionable steps that can be taken by SMEs to ensure they foster the right culture from the get-go. It’s never too late to start.”

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A third of UK workers indicating that they don’t enjoy their current job

New research by Reed.co.uk, has found that 25% of UK workers are considering leaving their current job within the next 12 months, citing job dissatisfaction as the main reason while a further 18% of UK workers are undecided on whether they want to leave or not.

The research revealed that despite the ongoing cost-of-living crisis, “I don’t enjoy my current job” ranked as the main reason (30%) why workers are looking for a new job, exceeding the desire for an ‘increased salary’ (29%), followed by a dislike of the current workplace culture (19%).

With almost a third of UK workers indicating that they don’t enjoy their current job, the root causes of this sense of job dissatisfaction amongst workers range from low salaries (50%), toxic workplace culture (44%), poor management (39%), a sense of not being valued (34%), and a lack of career progression opportunities (16%).

According to the data, middle-aged workers – those aged 35-44- and 45–54-year-olds – are those who desire to move jobs in search of more satisfying work ranked highest – 33% and 34% respectively, compared to an average of 25% amongst other age groups, with 18-34-year-olds are almost twice as likely to actually act on this job dissatisfaction by considering a job move than older workers (32% compared to 17% of 55-64-year-olds).

For employers keen to retain staff, a salary increase (50%), flexible hours (24%) and more perks and benefits (24%) rank as the factors most likely to make workers stay.

The benefits most valued by workers include flexible working hours (62%), remote working options (36%), mental health support (34%) and career development programmes (32%). In fact, 45% of workers stated that they either only apply for jobs that list flexible or remote working or are more likely to apply for such roles. However, ‘Boomers’ are far less concerned about flexibility with only 6% reporting they’re looking for more flexibility in a new role, compared to 22% of ‘Millennials’.

James Reed, Chairman of Reed.co.uk, said: “Among the many long-lasting impacts of COVID-19 on the UK economy is the increasing demand amongst workers for employment that provides more meaningful, enjoyable and satisfying experiences. The record levels of job vacancies on offer across all sectors and regions have empowered workers to prioritise a sense of job satisfaction and, in turn, to more actively critique their current employer’s inability to meet their needs.”

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There were 184,000 searches a month for ‘Amazon jobs’

New research by marketing training hub School of Marketing analysed the top searches for jobs and careers on Google, to determine which private sector companies Brits are keenest to work for currently.

Tesco came out as the most popular company, with the multinational supermarket seeing more than 362,000 searches a month on average for openings. There are, on average, 232,000 searches a month for ‘Tesco jobs’ and 130,000 a month for ‘Tesco careers’. It’s by far the most popular company to work for at the moment, with more than 150,000 searches over second place Amazon.

Amazon takes second place, with more than 184,000 searches a month for ‘Amazon jobs’ and more than 12,000 monthly searches for ‘Amazon careers’, adding up to an average of 196,000 searches a month for Amazon opportunities from Brits.

Coming in third place with more than 138,000 searches a month for openings is Asda. This is thanks to more than 114,000 searches for ‘Asda jobs’ and 24,000 searches monthly for ‘Asda careers’.

Sainsbury’s comes in the fourth position on the list, with 111,000 monthly searches for ‘Sainsbury’s jobs’ and 17,000 searches a month for ‘Sainsbury’s careers’, totalling 128,000 searches a month.

Royal Mail comes in fifth place as one of three entries in the top ten that aren’t supermarkets. On average, there are 116,000 searches a month for ‘Royal Mail jobs’ and 11,000 searches for ‘Royal Mail careers’ adding up to a total of 127,000. 

  Company “Jobs” searches “Careers” searches Total monthly searches
Tesco 232,000 130,000 362,000
Amazon 184,000 12,000 196,000
Asda 114,000 24,000 138,000
Sainsburys 111,000 17,000 128,000
Royal Mail 116,000 11,000 127,000
Morrisons 71,000 9,300 80,300
Waitrose 64,000 4,400 68,400
Lidl 44,000 18,000 62,000
Aldi 50,000 10,000 60,000
10  Primark 41,000 13,000 54,000

Ritchie Mehta, CEO of School of Marketing, said: “It’s clear where the interest in the private sector job market lies now, and it’s in supermarkets. Additionally, some supermarkets are much more popular for job prospects than others.

“With major brands at the top of many people’s minds when they begin a job search, smaller businesses need to work harder to find and attract skilled employees. One extremely effectively way to do that is to take advantage of initiatives such as the Apprenticeship Levy scheme to bring in new staff or train current ones in digital and data-led programmes, with the vast majority of the training cost covered by the levy.”

The study was conducted by the School of Marketing, which offers leading digital and data marketing apprenticeships.

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Knowledge and expertise are essential for creativity 
According to a recent survey conducted by Gartner, Inc, 49% percent of HR leaders named innovating for success as one of their top three priorities for 2022. The latest findings were announced during the Gartner ReimagineHR Conference, on 16th of September.

Despite HR leaders prioritising innovations, a May 2022 Gartner survey of more than 3,500 employees found that only 46% of employees agree that their organisation encourages creative thinking.

Emily Rose McRae, Senior Director in the Gartner HR practice said: “The survey results show that an organisation’s actions directly impact the ability of employees to be creative by 25%. In fact, an organisation’s actions have more than double the impact of an individual’s personality when it comes to driving employee creativity.”

The analysis found that effective creativity – producing a high volume of relevant and novel ideas – requires three things:

  1. Knowledge and expertise
  2. Ability to overcome “stickiness” of prior knowledge
  3. Imagination

According to the survey results, there are three actions organisations can take to increase employee creativity in general:

Broaden participation to increase knowledge and expertise

In today’s dispersed workforce, individuals seamlessly toggle between asynchronous and synchronous work environments. As such, leaders and teams must create space for idea generation to occur across all modes of work, while simultaneously facilitating participation.

Leaders should also intentionally include employees from all levels. Executives are more likely to spend their time thinking strategically, while managers are more likely to focus on change management, and those more junior may have the clearest understanding of where potential quick wins lie.

McRae continued: “Bringing together employees who reside in various parts of the organisation, both physically and figuratively, will enable the business to harness the diversity of perspective as a knowledge base for creative activities.”

Lower stress to reduce stickiness of prior knowledge

The pressure to respond as work, and the workplace, evolved during the pandemic affected every industry and all leaders and employees. HR has had to exercise creativity in many forms – from developing a hybrid/return-to-office strategy, designing a pandemic talent strategy, to finding flexibility for frontline workers and establishing mechanisms for employee activism.

Finding creative, innovative solutions requires mental and temporal space. At a base level, managers must reduce tasks that crowd out creativity, while ensuring employees have time to decompress and recharge between tasks. At the broadest level, senior leaders should consider if their organisation has a culture that rewards idea generation, regardless of the ultimate success of ideas.

Increase novelty to drive imagination

The shift to hybrid work has limited employee interactions. When work consists primarily of similar days interacting – or not interacting – with the same people, creativity is particularly challenging.

HR should work with managers to bring together people who haven’t worked together before, or who have very different perspectives. Progressive organizations are going a step further and intentionally create shared new experiences among employees. One method is to offer individuals and teams, both remote and onsite, daily or weekly challenges, such as: work from a different location, take a walk in a new neighborhood, or try a new food.

“Adding novelty to the everyday – and sharing it with colleagues – can spark people to see problems differently and thus develop new solutions,” concluded McRae.

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Talent Solutions

Acquisition strengthens Nash Squared as a major MSP

Nash Squared, a provider of talent and technology solutions, has become a major force in Managed Service Provision with its recent acquisition of Het Flexhuis – a Managed Service Provider (MSP) of talent and recruitment services based in The Netherlands.

Het Flexhuis has a strong track record in delivering outsourced recruitment services for government, public services, and commercial organisations and will operate as an independent brand within Nash Squared’s recruitment business Harvey Nash.

Bev White, CEO of Nash Squared, commented: “I am delighted to welcome Het Flexhuis into the Nash Squared family. It is our vision to help our clients access talent and technology in every way possible, and offering a high quality MSP solution is an important next step for us. Het Flexhuis brings enormous experience and expertise with them, and I am excited by the potential.”

Occo Lijding, MD of Harvey Nash The Netherlands, commented: “This represents a step change in how we can help and support our clients in talent and technology. I have long admired the team at Het Flexhuis, and when we met I was struck by how similar our values and ambitions were. They are the perfect fit for us, and I look forward to working with them.”

Frederieke Schmidt Crans, Managing Director, Het Flexhuis commented: “We are thrilled and excited to become part of Nash Squared. Our company was established ten years ago with a mission to create a world-class MSP with great people and processes at its core. We see joining Nash Squared as the natural next chapter in that success story.”

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Search engines combine forces to accelerate Adzuna’s growth in the US

On Tuesday, 14 June, Adzuna announced their acquisition of the US job search engine Getwork.

The Getwork team, under the leadership of Brad Squibb, will be working alongside the Adzuna team, intending to accelerate Adzuna’s growth in North America.

Getwork links job seekers with vacant roles at North American companies by indexing millions of verified jobs daily directly from tens of thousands of employer career sites.

Adzuna, with headquarters in London, UK, Indianapolis, IN, and Sydney, AU, uses AI-powered technology to match people to jobs. The company has recently launched in Switzerland, Belgium, Spain, and Mexico. Their operations now cover 20 markets globally.

The two companies will operate as independent brands with their own established communities.

Doug Monro, CEO, and Co-founder of Adzuna, comments: “Adzuna acquiring Getwork will help us supercharge our growth in North America. The Getwork team’s stellar reputation for great service and delivery has led them to be trusted by an impressive roster of household name companies in the US. It’s also a great fit as their team and mission are so aligned with ours. The US enterprise market is crying out for strong alternatives to existing offerings and we’re looking forward to combining Adzuna’s marketing expertise, global footprint and programmatic job matching technology with Getwork’s deep industry knowledge and reputation to deliver even better for our customers. The US is the fastest-growing part of our business and this acquisition will accelerate our profitable growth trajectory.”

Brad Squibb, President of Getwork, comments: “Adzuna is a truly global business, operating across 20 countries, which creates an exciting opportunity for us to scale into new markets with the help of a brand that has already paved the way for international expansion. We can’t wait to join Doug and the team on this journey.”

 

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Despite efforts there is still massive room for improvement in UK management and reporting

In research released today, findings reveal a lack of focus on progressing diversity in the workplace. In the study conducted by SD Worx, it was found that while 68% of UK companies are committed to removing unconscious bias in the recruitment process, many have failed to implement a reporting system to track progress on meeting ED&I objectives.

The survey revealed that only 26% of UK companies evaluate managerial commitment to achieving ED&I-related objectives. A further 32% admitted having no systems allowing employees to report discrimination.

The UK ranked third in its commitment to removing unconscious bias at 68% when it comes to ranking. Ireland ranked first at 74%, with Belgium coming in second, at 69%.

As far as rankings for equal access to training, the UK is slightly lower than other countries, with 64% of companies investing in equal access to training and development. Ireland (72%), Belgium (71%), and Poland (69%) topped the list.

While 64% of UK companies include transparency about ED&I goals and actions to attract a diverse workforce in their mission statement and corporate values, only 60% of the UK companies surveyed said that they promote ED&I in job advertisements, social media, and their websites.

The survey also revealed that countries vary in their level of focus concerning educating and involving managers in their ED&I policies. For example, in the UK, 60% of companies stated that they actively involve their managers in ED&I policies, and 60% provide internal training on the topic.

Colette Philp, UK HR Country Lead at SD Worx commented: “It’s no longer enough for businesses to say they prioritise diversity and inclusion. Instead, they must prove their commitment to achieving a more diverse workforce, both internally within their business and externally to attract talent.”

“There is more awareness than ever before regarding diversity in the workplace and it’s a deciding factor for many when it comes to searching for a role or staying with a business. A diverse workforce brings new experiences and perspectives and an inclusive environment allows individuals to thrive. If businesses aren’t already putting ED&I as a top priority, it’s essential they act now to do so.”

Jurgen Dejonghe, Portfolio Manager SD Worx Insights, added: “It’s important that companies start investing in an active reporting system about their actions concerning diversity, equality and inclusion. On the one hand, that data offers a strong basis for optimising the diversity policy with concrete and consciously controlled actions. On the other hand, such a system also provides clear evidence whether companies are effectively putting their money where their mouth is and not making false promises to (future) employees.”

For ED&I initiatives to be successful, change needs to come from the top, with proper rollouts and reporting system to track their progress.

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TALiNT Partners has announced the finalists for the 2022 TIARA Talent Solutions Awards with 22 of the United States’ best Talent Solutions, MSP & RPO firms shortlisted across eight award categories.

The finalists for the 2022 Talent Solutions Awards US, which spotlight MSP, RPO and Talent Solutions providers delivering excellence in recruitment and talent acquisition across the US, are the top of the crop and represent the very best in providers in the industry.

Ken Brotherston, Chief Executive of TALiNT Partners made comment: “Following the inaugural TIARA Talent Solutions Awards US last year, I am delighted to see many of our 2021 finalists return to celebrate their achievements, as well as a number of new entrants this year. The 2022 Awards are a true celebration across the market, from the large global players to newer entrants and niche RPO organizations, all demonstrating excellence in their impact for employers and their own employees.”

“The TIARAs are distinguished by the rigor of its judging process and the quality of its judging panel,” he added. “Entries will be assessed by our esteemed judges through six key metrics: excellence in delivery; innovation; DE&I impact; sustainable value; business growth; and purpose.”

What sets the TIARAs apart from other awards programs is their independent panel of expert judges and individual feedback given back to each finalist.

The judges for this year’s TIARA Talent Solutions Awards are drawn from the HR and Talent Acquisition community are:

  • Sachin Jain, Senior Director – Global Talent Management, PepsiCo
  • Andrew Brown, Director RPO and Recruiting, Cornerstone
  • Russell Griffiths, General Manager, Coleman Research
  • Rich Genovese, Global Head – Talent Identification & Discovery, Jazz Pharmaceuticals
  • Gregg Schneider, Senior Manager – Procurement Plus, Global Talent Marketplace and Innovation Lead, Accenture
  • Justin Brown, Talent Acquisition Project Manager, Gallagher
  • Chris Farmer, Global Program Owner, Salesforce
  • Kerri Arman, Former VP Global Head of Talent, American Express Global Business Travel
  • Saleem Khaja, COO and Co-Founder, WorkLLama
  • Fitzgerald Ventura, CEO, 1099Policy
  • Mike Wilczak, Chief Product Officer, iCIMS

Judges will convene in May to debate and decide the winner of each category Award as well as an overall Talent Solutions Provider of the Year. All winners will be announced at an exclusive virtual awards ceremony on Thursday June 9th, 18:00 EDT.

Winners will also be profiled in a special TIARA Awards supplement published with TALiNT International.

The TIARA 2022 campaign is supported by our headline partner Cornerstone, and sponsored by WorkLLama, 1099Policy, and iCIMS.

The full list of TIARA 2022 Talent Solutions Finalists can be viewed here.

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