Tag: Recruitment

Financial services industry struggling to recruit

According to a whitepaper by global workforce solutions provider AMS, a solid commitment to Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance (ESG) will aid financial services firms in securing sought-after talent amid skills shortages.

In its latest whitepaper, Why the ‘S’ of ESG may be the rose between two thorns for retail banking, its recommended that employers across the banking and insurance sectors strengthen and promote their social credentials if they are to harness the power of ESG to build their employer brand.

We know that Gen Zs are allocating more importance to social responsibility and want to work at companies that align with their values. It’s therefore becoming increasingly important for businesses put their money where their mouth is and ensure that ESG forms the foundation of the way they do business.

The advice comes following research from the Financial Services Skills Commission, which found that almost a third of employers across the financial, professional and business services sector are struggling to recruit due to widespread skills shortages.

Janine Chidlow Sector Managing Director of Retail Banking & Insurance at AMS commented: “At a time when acute skills shortages are impacting access to talent, both jobseekers and existing employees increasingly want to find a purpose in life and are seeking out employers that share their values. That might be a commitment to sustainability, philanthropy, or social impact. Against this backdrop, the ESG framework unsurprisingly has an impact on talent attraction and retention within financial services.

“Candidates may not be seeking an ethical employer in the traditional sense any more – now they’re looking at the social perception of an employer brand and what they are committed to in terms of achieving carbon neutral status or supporting social mobility and diversity. The war for talent is now raging once again, and those businesses that are not demonstrating flexibility, care, innovative thinking, and evidence that people matter will lose very quickly. For talent strategists, a commitment to ESG is not just a vote winner for hiring great people: it’s a brilliant tool in your sales armoury too.”

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Anecdotes shared by former colleague

In the wake of the passing of Sir David Amess, MP for Southend West, recruitment industry members share fond memories of the animal-loving politician.

Sir David began his business career working in recruitment for Accountancy Personnel (AP), now called Hays, in the mid 1970s. One of TALiNT Partners’ TIARA Judges, Sue Cooper, Founding Director of Scoop Consulting and Non-Executive Chairwoman of Executive Insights Group worked with him in the early stages of her career and shared these anecdotes:

Sue said: “When I joined AP back in the very late 70s David was the manager of the very successful Moorgate office’s Temp Division. I was a fresh-faced trainee sitting next to him hoping to learn from the master.

I have two dominant memories of that time:

“The first memory is that he had an attaché-style briefcase and pinned into the lid was a giant photo of Maggie Thatcher. He was obsessed with politics way back then and he looked at that picture a lot!

Secondly, I asked a lot of questions and when he had had enough of me, I’d be sent down to the dusty basement to look for a candidate file and told not to return until I found it –  after hours of searching to no avail! Not finding the candidate file wasn’t surprising as it didn’t exist. It was just a tactic to keep me out of the way and to give him a break from my endlessly questioning!”

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40% of businesses report decrease in revenue

 A report published by Addition, the outsourced finance solution for SMEs and start-ups, has revealed the cities that were most impacted by economic issues such as Brexit and the pandemic over the last 12 months.

With 40% of businesses reporting a decrease in revenue over the last year, Leicester-based businesses have been most impacted. Manchester came in at second with 35%, and London was sixth with more than a quarter (26%) of businesses reporting a loss in revenue.

Cities have also struggled to recruit employees, demonstrating that skill shortages and economic fluctuations are impacting massively the job market across the UK.

In Bristol 39% of businesses are struggling to recruit the right talent. One in four (25%) of firms in London are finding it hard to recruit, and Newcastle is the least impacted, with a mere 13% of businesses with concerns about recruiting.

The table below outlines how the cities ranked in terms of economic impact and struggling to recruit the right talent.

 

Revenues Impacted Most Most Recruitment Struggles
1 Leicester Bristol
2 Manchester Glasgow
3 Edinburgh Leicester
4 Bristol Southampton
5 Leeds London
6 London Birmingham
7 Belfast Edinburgh
8 Cardiff Manchester
9 Newcastle Cardiff
10 Glasgow Leeds
11 Southampton Belfast
12 Liverpool Liverpool
13 Birmingham Newcastle

 

Addition Founder and CEO, Graham Davies, commented: “We believe it is critical to understand how businesses are being impacted in the short-term. Our national reports give detailed insights into how business owners are coping with every aspect of running their business and help us to understand future trends or potential concerns.”

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Hiring teams find better ways to keep candidates engaged 

JobAdder, the global recruitment software provider has released a new integration with LinkedIn Recruiter System Connect (RSC) to improve hiring workflows, time to hire and the candidate experience – at a time when the war of talent is raging.  

The integration provides a seamless process for recruiters and candidates that connects users to the RSC platform and JobAdder without switching platforms.  

This functionality adds to JobAdder’s offering. It allows recruiters to find quality candidates quickly, know instantly which candidates from LinkedIn are already in their JobAdder account and engaged with, see all In Mail messages from both platforms in one place and cross-reference data from both sources. 

Rob Brodie, Head of Corporate Sales at JobAdder believes this new integration will speed up hiring processes at a crucial time for employers. He said: “With skills shortages rife, hiring managers need real time information quickly in order to fill resourcing needs and keep applicants engaged. The challenge for many is that information is often hosted in numerous locations – with communication going out via emails, LinkedIn, company applicant tracking systems and much more. By integrating LinkedIn RSC, we can help save recruiters time in shortlisting candidates, aid the nurturing of a database of high-quality candidates, maximise efficiency across hiring processes and enable hiring teams to continue using the tools they already value, all in one place. This not only improves efficiencies for employers, but also enables hirers to get to the best talent quickly – a critical benefit given the limited availability of top skills at the moment.” 

Adam Gregory, Senior Director, Talent and Learning Solutions at LinkedIn said: “We are delighted with the JobAdder integration into LinkedIn Recruiter. Businesses are looking to fill roles as quickly and effectively as possible, and this integration provides recruiters better visibility across the entire candidate process in a single view and can reduce placement time.” 

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Continued skills shortage to blame

Three quarters of hiring managers have reported that the cost of recruiting workers has increased since January this year according to talent sourcing specialist, Talent.com. This increase comes amid the continued skills shortages.

The survey found that hiring expenditure decreased for just 8% of survey respondents, while the remining 17% have not yet witnessed any notable change.

Talent.com’s research supports ONS data which shows that the average pay growth also jumped 8.8% across the UK for the three months between April and June 2021, representing the highest rise since records began 20 years ago.

Noura Dadzie – VP Sales UK & International Markets at Talent.com, commented: “There’s no doubt that the main factor behind the increase in recruitment budgets is the mass skills shortages we’re witnessing across the UK. Available talent is limited in almost every sector, so recruiters are having to not only increase remuneration to attract resources, but also think of new and innovative ways to find applicants from the get-go. While our survey doesn’t breakdown exactly where this increased investment is being channelled, we do know from another poll over half (57%) of recruiters have turned to job boards and job aggregators to source candidates amidst a skills shortage, so investment in these two areas is likely to have increased. We do know from our conversations with hirers that many are also moving funds into increasingly sophisticated tech tools to help them look outside of the usual channels to find talent. The rise of job aggregators and programmatic platforms, in particular, is enabling recruitment professionals to save both time and headaches and is one area that more businesses are budgeting additional finances for.”

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Net employment outlook at third strongest in Europe

According to the latest ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook Survey, employers across Ireland anticipate the highest level of hiring in 17 years, for the fourth quarter according to The Net Employment Outlook for Ireland stands at +34%, the third strongest in Europe. The powerhouse area behind this positivity is the manufacturing sector – up 53 percentage points from the previous year to +39% for Q4 2021.

Transport and logistics is also poised for headcount growth, with employment outlook rising to 39% for the coming quarter. The retail sector also intends to hire significantly, bouncing back with the promise of continued government employment supports for the industry remaining in place until March 2022.

Elsewhere, the finance and business service sector remains strong, up ten percentage points on last quarter to +20%. However, the construction industry is being hit by limitations to supplies and hiring plans and has contracted 19 percentage points from last quarters record high, yet the employers in the sector remain optimistic with a hiring Outlook of +20%.

  • Nationwide, employers in all industry sectors report positive hiring plans for Q4.
  • From a regional perspective, employers in Dublin are reporting positive hiring intent with an outlook of +39%, with Munster being the most positive province for the next quarter at +44%.
  • Larger-sized organisations (250+ employees) are reporting the strongest hiring confidence for Q4 with an employment outlook of +39%.
  • Currently 69% of employers are struggling to fill roles. This leaves us with a significant talent gap where employers need to be investing in recruitment drives, upskilling and retraining programmes as long-term solutions to filling roles.

Photo courtesy of Canva.com

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Job vacancies rise to over one million to set new record

New data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows that employment has returned to pre-pandemic levels, with August payrolls showing a monthly increase of 241,000 to 29.1 million. The number of job vacancies in the three months to August has also risen above one million for the first time since records began in 2001.

Speaking to the BBC, ONS deputy statistician Jonathan Athow, warned that well over a million are still on furlough and the recovery is not even, with London still down, young workers disproportionately affected, and sectors like hospitality slower to recover. The biggest rise in job vacancies was in the food and accommodation sectors, up by 57,600 in August.

While the overall unemployment rate fell from 4.7% to 4.6% in the three months to July, this is against the backdrop of acute talent shortages. Various trade bodies, including the British Chambers of Commerce, blamed Brexit and Covid for declines in labour supply and warned that ‘the end of furlough is unlikely to be a silver bullet to the ongoing shortages’.

Neil Carberry, chief executive of the Recruitment and Employment Confederation said: “The Government has convened a cross-department forum to tackle these shortages, but this will only be effective if industry experts are involved as well. Government must work with business to improve training opportunities for workers to transition into the most crucial sectors and allow some flexibility in the immigration system at this time of need. And while businesses are raising salaries in many sectors, they must think more broadly about how they will attract and retain staff through improved conditions, facilities, and staff engagement, working with recruiters, who are the professional experts in all of this.”

Tania Bowers, Legal Counsel and Head of Public Policy at APSCo, added: “The fact that pay has returned to pre-pandemic levels at last is a positive sign for the economy, however, we are seeing employers simply needing to increase remuneration as staff shortages continue to impact hiring activity. The increasing dearth of talent that businesses across the country are reporting is a real concern to the recruitment sector.”

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Despite new IR35 regulations and guidance in April, and the Department of Work and Pensions and Home Office hit with fines of £87m and £29m, respectively. HM Courts and Tribunal Service has fallen victim of CEST misuse with a total fine of £12m.

Commenting on the latest Check Employment Status for Tax (CEST) casualty, Dave Chaplin, CEO of IR35 Shield said: “HMRC’s CEST tool is failing fast and now we are hearing of yet one more government department, HM Courts and Tribunal Service, hit with a high tax bill to the tune of £12m because it has relied on CEST to assess its contracting workforce. One of CEST’s major flaws has been its over-reliance on substitution, which any defence expert knows is folly. Over the last few years, many industry experts have pointed out CEST’s failings to HMRC but those messages were ignored and now we are witnessing the fallout and financial damage.

“My advice to anyone who has used CEST is to revisit your determinations and if they rely on a valid right to substitute then seek advice on the correct interpretation of the law. Also, recheck the status with the assumption that the substitution clause is not valid, to make sure you have not also been badly exposed due to the flaw.

“Moreover, it is crucial that once you hire a worker on an “outside IR35” basis that you continue to monitor the status throughout the engagement. Regular checking and gathering contemporaneous evidence are crucial in forming a pre-emptive defence.  Poor assessment decisions left alone, without any evidence to back them up, can prove costly as we are seeing with these recent governmental departments.”

The FCSA, the membership body dedicated to raising standards and promoting supply chain compliance for the temporary labour market, responded saying that it had expressed its concern to HMRC about the validity of the CEST tool. “The current fines perhaps demonstrate that the CEST tool needs re-visiting in terms of a valid SDC determination. In the light of the current outcomes, it would be silly for HMRC to simply press ahead without stopping and reviewing the tool.

“In the interim, marketplace experts, including many FCSA members, have developed alternative tools that can assist the sector in creating more accurate determination tests. So far, there is an ironic pattern emerging here in that one government department is taking money from another and so the government balance remains at zero. The real threat comes when other non-government bodies start to fall victim to huge fines because of using a government promoted test. That will not sit well with a sector that is working hard to support the government to ‘Build Back Better’.”

Photo courtesy of Unsplash.com

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The new partnership has solidified the place of video conferencing in the talent recruitment industry.

Global recruiter Hays has partnered with specialist tech provider Odro to deliver video interview and engagement technology to over 1,800 recruitment professionals across the UK and Ireland (UK&I).

The contract is a significant win for Odro, which has over 700 clients worldwide and more than 10,000 platform users. It comes just two months after the company announced an impressive £5.2m cash injection from UK investor, BGF.

Hays’ confidence in Odro is not only an endorsement for the business but the increasing importance of video software in the industry. The technology offers asynchronous and two-way interviewing, digital shortlisting, video sales messaging and content production.

Commenting on the partnership, CEO of Odro, Ryan McCabe said: “We’ve been really encouraged at signs that the industry is bouncing back and it’s great that video has firmly cemented its place as a must-have in the modern-day recruiter’s toolkit.”

Hays Group employs 10,000 staff in 33 countries and in the year to June 2020 placed 66,000 candidates into permanent jobs plus 235,000 people into temporary roles.

Roddy Adair, Director at Hays, said that it is constantly looking for ways to improve and upgrade their tech offering to support their staff in their daily operations. “We were really impressed with the implementation process and the approach by the Odro team from the outset,” he said. “Feedback from the pilot was incredibly positive, with great results and our existing clients have reacted really well to our new way of working, which has significant efficiency benefits for their businesses too.”

Odro has been shortlisted in four categories for the 2021 TIARA Talent Tech Star Awards, including the Optima Talent Tech Leader of the Year.

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The number of applicants per vacancy (APV) declined significantly across three key sectors in the first half of the year as vacancies have surged, according to data from Broadbean.

Across manufacturing and production, vacancies rose by 32%, while the APV was down 46%. Sectors experiencing the largest fall in applicant numbers were logistics & supply chain and retail, with the former seeing vacancies rise 85% and the AVP decreasing by 60%. The latter saw roles increase by 101% and applicant numbers dropped by 55% between quarter one and quarter two 2021.

Retail has been hit hardest by the so-called ‘pingdemic’, with large employers reporting that entire stores are being forced to shut because of staff needing to isolate.

“The fact that we are seeing applicant numbers fall and companies starting to really struggle to recruit is worrying and could hamper the UK’s ability to build back after the pandemic,” said Alex Fourlis, Managing Director at Broadbean Technology. “And while we expect applicant numbers to pick up once again in September after the usual summer lull, the next few weeks will prove a testing time for the employment market, particular given the huge numbers of people isolating.”

The latest Report on Jobs survey by the REC and KPMG showed that recruitment activity continued to rise sharply across the UK at the start of the third quarter, with permanent and temp billings both rising at near-record rates and starting salaries increasing at the quickest pace on record.

It found that that rising demand for staff as restrictions ended and a further marked drop in candidate supply have accelerated increases in permanent starting salaries, with the rate of salary inflation the sharpest seen in nearly 24 years of data collection. In contrast, temporary/contract staff hourly pay rates rose at the second-quickest rate since the survey began.

Overall, candidate numbers fell at the second-sharpest rate in the survey history, easing only slightly from June’s record, with Brexit cited as a key factor reducing the supply of workers, especially temporary staff.

“While companies want to invest in their business now that restrictions are lifting, demand for new staff still outstrips supply due to low candidate availability,” said Claire Warnes, Partner and Head of Education, Skills and Productivity at KPMG UK. “We know that reskilling and upskilling is needed to help people move between sectors, and there’s no doubt the ‘pingdemic’ has added an extra dimension to the recruitment challenge. Plus, with furlough due to end soon, there may be a downward pressure on pay to come.”

Photo courtesy of Canva.com

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