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Recruitment Challenges

In every Crisis there is Opportunity

Working Life, Jobs, Firefish...

Since the coronavirus outbreak, many companies have been hit pretty hard regardless of their sector, location or size. Computer software company Firefish, based in Glasgow, have been hosting weekly webinars and CEO Wendy McDougall gave an insight into what changes employers and employees can expect to see post-pandemic.

Recruitment agencies have also been affected in the last few months. The Covid threat has caused temporary shutdown for most companies, meaning a decrease in job vacancies and interviews. Although it's a challenging time at the moment, it's important to realise that this is temporary and we can turn this negative into a positive. For example, since the outbreak, there has been a surge in jobseekers looking for work after being made redundant.

Since most people have been working from home, our lives have undergone a digital transformation; video calls, a surge in online shopping and just a general increase in the amount of people on the web. This is a huge step for some but can be a positive one, especially feeling as though they're more connected now than ever. We've essentially been involved in the world's biggest work from home experiment, and for the most part, we've aced it. Increased productivity and candidate flexibility are just a couple of the ways in which working from home has had a positive effect and now we know it works, what's stopping us from continuing in the future? This could be a fantastic opportunity for some companies.

It's important to realise that the future is flexible, and more so than ever before. Companies should start to expect a mixture of office based and remote working, rather than having everyone in the office - this break in our traditional way of working has made us realise that. Of course, this may be difficult for recruitment companies, but with any change comes opportunity. Companies can use this time to expand their brand, re-profile jobs and work on candidate response and selection - this is important for a business as it's likely that recruitment companies will be extremely busy once they get back on their feet, and it's imperative to maintain a high level of customer service which will have a direct impact on their reputation.

Twenty or so years ago, recruitment companies were made up of a handful of '360 recruiters' who not only recruited but maintained every other aspect of the job too, aspects which are now divided between three or four other team members. In the early 2000s, more employees were taken on, sourcing talent for the already established recruiter and maintaining sales. After the 2008 financial crisis, recruitment companies bounced back, but with an extra person on their team - someone to head the marketing side of things. So what effect has this recent hiatus on our daily working lives had on the industry now?

Covid-19 has had a phenomenal impact on recruitment companies, but it's important to note that it has been a positive one. This 'pause' has allowed recruitment companies to sit back and look at the bigger picture and to reevaluate their team. It has encouraged business owners to revert back to the '360 recruiter' way of working and learn their trade all over again.

Although this period has been a turbulent and strange one, it's actually given business owners the opportunity to progress, rethink their working environments and move forward. Essentially, it's helped them to make the most of a bad situation - something they may not have been able to do otherwise.