We are always on the look-out for the latest trends in recruitment and the sectors in which we operate. Unsurprisingly, many of the current trends in both have been shaped by the need to meet the ever-growing demand for skilled employees. The latest report from Engineering UK shows that demand is still outstripping supply. 2017 had the highest vacancy ratio since 2001 with more than 2.5 jobs vacant for every 100 vacancies filled.
It’s not an issue that’s going to change anytime soon and it’s something that we as a consultancy, and our clients, are facing every day.
Many of the trends we see coming through now mirror the approach we’ve always recommended to our clients, so we know they work.
Here’s the top three trends we think will continue to shape recruitment strategies throughout 2018, and into 2019:
Focus on home grown talent: It’s no secret that the engineering and manufacturing sectors are among the hardest hit by the current skills shortage. And of course, we are yet to find out what the impact of Brexit will be on the job market.
What we do believe is that businesses will need to be increasingly savvy about finding ways to develop their existing workforce to meet the future needs of their businesses. That means looking at both formal and informal training opportunities and maximising peer learning. As well as helping to deal with the realities of the skills gap, focusing on developing employees is a great tactic for achieving better staff retention and making businesses more attractive to future employees.
Employee branding: Employee branding is the phrase used to describe a business’s reputation and values as an employer. In a candidate driven market, where the need for talent far outstrips the pool of prospective employees, it has become a vital part of the recruitment process. Candidates want to know what kind of company they will be working for, what the values and culture of the organisation are and how they will fit into that. In fact, research by LinkedIn shows that 75% of job seekers research a company’s reputation and employer brand before applying. And of course, companies with a bad reputation not only struggle to attract candidates, but also to retain employees.
Employer branding needn’t be complicated – it’s simply about understanding your business and its culture and making sure that this is communicated clearly to current and future employees.
Personal approach: At the heart of both of these trends is the need to make the recruitment process more personal and less transactional. We’ve always favoured an approach that focuses on getting to know the person behind the CV. We believe that taking time to understand a candidate’s values and abilities is vital in finding them the right role. It also makes it easier to understand what motivates them and what they are looking for in a job. In turn, that means businesses are recruiting people that are not only able to do the job now, but ones that will thrive within the business for years to come.
This personal approach is not just restricted to the recruitment process either. The most switched on employers continually tap into what their employees want and need, in order to feel valued, and address this accordingly. It’s a trend we think is likely to stick – employee motivation is key to retention, which is vital in a sector where the competition for the best talent is at an all-time high.