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In the current market, Candidates are King. They have the choice of positions and as an employer, you need to woo them. In the past recruitment has been very much a formal structured process, often without character and personality. 
 
60% of UK companies use an assessment centre process as part of their recruitment. It gives you a more objective view of candidates and can include more work-based assessments to give a better indication as to which candidate will be the best for the role. Assessment centres are accepted as being fairer than a standard interview process as more information is collected on each candidate. 
 
If you are using assessment centres, how can you use them to convey your values and the culture of the company to effectively sell your job opportunity over other roles that they may be applying for? 
 
 
With the current unlocking across the UK, we have seen an increase in the number of vacancies that we are working on. If you are deciding to run your own recruitment projects without using an external supplier, how can you avoid making the most common mistakes in recruitment and miss bringing in the best people for your positions? 
 
Mistake number 1: Focussing on qualifications and experience rather than relevant skills 
 
There have been some really big changes to the recruitment market over the pandemic with some sectors all but having disappeared whereas others have continued to thrive. If you can be clear as to the skills that you want to bring into your company then make sure that you are sifting candidates based on this rather experience. There are really big advantages to bringing in skills from a different area as these candidates will bring a fresh perspective to your business. For example, someone from the travel industry could bring a whole new view on customer services and client management to financial services. 
 
 
 
 
 
The candidate pool is quiet at the moment, if you are choosing to run your recruitment projects yourself how can you make sure that your adverts are not being skipped over by potential candidates. You want to try and ensure that all candidates who are suitable and fit within the role apply – whilst not overly encouraging those that aren’t suitable and have just “clicked to apply” as if they are shopping on Amazon. 
 
What are the top 3 things that you should be doing to make your adverts more attractive? 
 
The candidate market is tough currently. There are not lots of candidates all desperate for their next role as some employers may expect. We are seeing a discerning candidate pool with clear requirements as to what they are looking for from their next role and their next employer. So, if you are recruiting currently what do you need to show potential applicants to make them interested in you? 
 
 
1. Stability 
We have all felt it over the last fourteen months. No one can look too far into the future and know what will be happening next with the pandemic. Yet for many of us, change does not sit comfortably. Most candidates, if they are looking for their next position will be looking for a company that is going to offer them stability. Make sure that your promotional literature reflects this – talk about your heritage and your plans for the future. 
 
2. Flexibility 
This is the number one requirement for candidates. They don’t necessarily want to work from home permanently or full time, but they do want to be offered flexibility within the workplace. Look at your policies around home working. What can you offer candidates – more flexible hours? a hybrid model of working from home as well as the office? You will lose out on candidates if you are still adopting a rigid 9 – 5, office working environment. If you are being flexible – shout about it! Candidates want to know – it will help to make their decision to apply to you easier. 
 
 
Being at the forefront of recruitment and active in the current market we are seeing some interesting and surprising candidate behaviours. None more so than the activity that we are seeing from candidates en masse currently. 
For many, it will seem surprising that rather than seeing a large active candidate pool, it is the opposite. Applications per job are down and the number of quality candidates is also lower than expected. So, if you are recruiting – what can you expect to see? 
 
1. Indecisive candidates 
Quality candidates will be holding job offers from more than one employer, and in a change to previous behaviours, more candidates are accepting more than one offer and then taking time over their decision as to which one they will finally take. To help them decide to take your role, make sure that you are keeping close to them and helping them with any outstanding questions that they need answering to help them with the decision-making process. It’s not about rubbishing any other offers they may have but about showing them how you will support them and offer them stability as they are forming their first impressions – values that have come to the forefront for many candidates during this time. 
 
 
As we are moving away from lockdown and through the pandemic, we are aware that the number of jobs is increasing, but surprisingly the number of candidates is not. If you find that you are recruiting now, what can you do to ensure that your preferred candidate takes your role? 
1. Increase your candidate engagement 
Over the last 18 months, there have been some significant shifts in recruitment to manage the need for new staff. We are all aware that recruitment has become even more remote with interviews being carried out remotely either using TEAMs, Zoom or specialist recruitment platforms. However, this can lead to your candidates being less engaged with your processes and therefore your company, which can lead to rejections by candidates at the offer stage. If you are running full remote recruitment processes make sure that you offer the opportunity for candidates to engage differently. Maybe send them a pack pre virtual meeting containing a coffee or tea bag and a biscuit or cake so that after the formal interview you can invite them for a quick coffee to answer any questions that the process may have thrown up for them? Give them your mobile so that if anything comes up during the process, they can speak to you directly rather than having to go through the recruitment agency. If you build these relationships now you will be more successful in attracting and offering to the right candidates for your business. 
 
 
Three fifths of the workforce work within the SME sector, yet when you look at recruitment providers do you see half of them offering to recruit for the SME market compared to corporate? The truth is recruitment is mainly offered as a one size fits all offering – yet the needs of an SME are very different from the corporate sector. If you are an SME looking to recruit, are you aware of the differences between your roles and those in a more corporate environment and what should you be considering in your recruitment process? 
 
 
SMEs are more likely to have roles that offer a breadth of experience and require a range of skills that need recruiting for. 
 
A job role is more fluid within an SME as often the company is growing quickly, and people and processes need to adapt quickly to the regularly changing environment. Corporate positions often have a more defined structure and career pathway through the company. How is your recruitment provider testing candidates to demonstrate their ability to be flexible and adaptable within a role and willing to take on extra responsibilities? 
 
 
 
 
If you think you might need to lose some staff this year, have you looked at the benefits of using an outplacement provider? They can support the positions that are being made redundant, but also those staff that will remain with you. 
The outsourced recruitment model is significantly different from using a standard recruitment agency. If you aren’t happy with your current recruitment provider and are interested in finding a new way of doing things what are the problems you may encounter with using an outsourced recruitment solution? 
 
 
1. You will be charged regardless 
 
The outsourced recruitment model is based on paying for the time it takes to recruit rather than a placement fee. This means that as soon as you engage with a company there is a bill to pay. However, you will find this is much less than a placement fee and you will get much more help, support, and guidance through the recruitment process. If you think that on average it takes a recruiter 6 days to find a candidate for you – then look at what a placement fee equates to – and do the maths, this is a much higher daily rate than you would usually pay for this level of consultancy using an RPO. 
 
 
 
With the UK coming out of lockdown companies are starting to look at some of the vacancies that they may have put on hold to start recruiting new staff. You may be asking yourself - What are typical recruitment costs that I can expect to pay? What options do I have for recruitment? 
 
Whilst there are fluctuations across different industries, typical recruitment costs are between 15 – 20% of your new employee's basic take on salary, if you use a recruitment consultancy or a recruitment agency to recruit. This is usually payable once the candidate has started their new role. There are no upfront costs, and therefore the risks are low – it is the standard “no win, no fee” model. For this, the agency will have looked at their pool of candidates and given you access to the ones that they think are most suitable to the position for which you are recruiting. They will sell the opportunity to the candidates on your behalf and they will also liaise between you and the candidate for booking interviews and should make sure that the candidate is fully briefed before an interview.  
 
If you take someone on, the costs to you are relatively high – and one of the reasons for this is that recruiters know that they won’t fill all of the roles that they are working on. They charge more to those companies that they do place people with as they are not making any money from those that don’t take their candidates on. 
 
What about other options? 

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