As many of you (both candidates and clients alike) have no doubt seen, many permanent vacancies have been put on hold. My question is whether this is the right thing to do? Could this be the best time to hire?
Whilst most companies will have their own reasons for this, I would like to share my thoughts.
Whilst many companies will be feeling the financial constraints that are being put upon them by COVID-19, I believe there are still valid reasons to continue with recruitment if you can. The government seems eager to try and keep business moving and the unprecedented stimulus package may just be the beginning. What is interesting is that for those companies who have not stopped recruiting, they are finding ways to utilise technologies that they hadn’t previously considered such as Skype and Zoom. On the candidate side, people are re-evaluating their priorities and I have spoken to a number of people who have said that “as soon as this is over, I am making my move….”
Why? Some are not happy with the way their employers are handling COVID19. Others see headcount reductions looming and fear for the security of their current role, some are just re-thinking their current work / life balance. So at this time some candidates who were not available two or three weeks ago may well be considering a move. Some of the resources that we use to track and identify candidates definitely look to have a higher than usual level of new talent.
One thing is for sure, many people are saying that once we come out of the other side of this Pandemic, there will be higher than usual competition for candidates and so now could be the ideal time to find your perfect hire, even if you are not ready to onboard them immediately. Also, with so many people working from home at the moment they have the time to interview in a confidential and safe manner.
I have been in recruitment in times of economic growth and in times of recession. Just as some say now is a good time to invest in the stock market, now could also be the best time to begin (or at least complete) a search , when the pressure is off and hiring managers can take their time to identify the best candidates. Waiting until everyone else is back in the market and starting new assignments will undoubtedly lead to more competition for certain skillsets. Hiring now could very well allow companies to select from the very best candidates.
This is far from a perfect situation for anyone and although onboarding new hires now will be different to what we are all used to, you only need to check LinkedIn to see that people are still starting new roles, carrying out thorough induction programmes and meeting their new colleagues via Skype and Zoom, so the technology is in place and hopefully we can all pull together to keep business moving in these difficult times.
So, Could this be the best time to hire? Possibly. All I am suggesting is don’t rule it out without considering whether your business might benefit from lining up the talent that you will need to drive growth after COVID-19 is in our rear view mirror.
Also, as a quick reminder, we are offering a free CV checking service at this time for candidates who have found themselves in an unexpected situation and need advice on how to market themselves. Please send to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0161-763-0420 for more advice.
Stay safe everyone.