The good news in Autumn 2019 is that things are picking up. The number of roles we are being briefed on has increased by around 35% and it seems companies are becoming more active when it comes to recruitment.
Here are the key trends I am seeing...
The restructuring trend has started to slow down it seems but I am still meeting candidates who have decided to take Voluntary Redundancy after a number of years with the same business and take the leap into the market to find out what else is out there for them. I have candidates telling me that after the third, fourth or even fifth round of restructuring (in some instances) it is now time to move on.
Many have taken the summer off to be with their family, take on a project or to study. That means a lot of great candidates are coming on to the market right now actively looking for their new challenge.
I am seeing a real desire from candidates to try something new. Without oversimplifying things I generally get two types of candidates at a senior level. Those that have always switched sectors and moved around every 3-5 years approximately and those that tend to stay in the same company and change roles within that company or stay in the same sector and move from one competitor to another – this seems to be especially common in sectors like retail, telcos and travel.
I don’t know what is driving this trend, perhaps it is the uncertainty in the UK generally, but more people seem to actively want to experience a new sector and do something different.
Unfortunately, it isn’t always that easy and not all employers are open to lack of sector experience but as with everything transferrable skills are key and how you present your CV for each role can make a difference.
From a Client perspective if you are open to sector experience now is the time to take advantage of candidates who may bring a new approach and fresh thinking.
One of the first things people are saying to me when I ask them what they are looking for in their next role is “company culture is very important to me”. This may be because of their recent experience - be it good or bad - but there is definitely a desire to balance their work with their lifestyle and they expect employers to take this into consideration.
Soft benefits like the amount of holiday, flexible working, working from home, etc are now expected and those companies that aren’t prepare to be flexible are losing out on some good candidates because of it.
Finally, I am getting asked a lot about consultancy work from people who have recently taken redundancy at a senior level. Again they are looking for flexibility and sometimes just want to experiment with working in a different company or sector before moving into their next permanent role. This is a great idea generally, however, I really don’t get consultancy roles very often (as much as I would love to).
Unlike maternity covers and FTCs which we regularly help with, consultancy roles tend to come through your existing network of contacts – from people who know you and know your work - so if you are considering doing some consultancy work make sure you let your network know this is something you are open to.
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