COVID + recruitment – the effects so far

January 10th, 2022 | Industry News

The Covid pandemic, which has killed an estimated 5,500,000 people worldwide, and has damaged many businesses, some of them irreparably, has caused seismic shifts in the recruitment industry.

During 2021 recruitment companies bore much of the brunt of the various lockdowns and restrictions. While actual recruitment, especially via HR departments, almost disappeared at times, employee retention – not usually a focus for recruitment agencies – became a paramount concern. Recruiting software that combines the best recruitment CRM with online capacity has given recruitment agencies who make the most of this software the ability to support their clients in keeping the staff they have through:

• internal promotion and team-building
• expression of organisational values through internal recruitment adverts
• developing onboarding processes to help organisations remain afloat in turbulent waters by reassigning personnel and redefining job descriptions.

It’s also become a job-seekers market – and job-seekers have become both cautious and demanding. In 2020, UK recruiters found 450,000 people permanent jobs: that’s a huge drop – 55% lower than in 2019. This is in part because of many fewer vacancies and in part due to candidates knowing that they are an in demand commodity. Software can help here too!

Techniques such as video interviewing, applicant tracking systems and automated task management have made recruitment management software an essential when dealing with risk-averse candidates who have no desire to travel to interview and who may be intending largely to work from home.

The demanding job-seeker is likely to have a focus on company culture and being a ‘good fit’ – which is where recruitment CRM software can benefit organisations by demonstrating organisational culture and values through advertising vacancies and at every level of engagement with candidates to give them a strong sense of the organisation’s approach.

By contrast, the same report shows that during the same time-frame, UK-based recruitment agencies sent out 980,000 temporary workers on average, every day, which is almost the same amount of temp activity as in 2019. Given how demanding this period was, and how work requirements and working conditions fluctuated through that year, this has been a significant achievement and a major contribution to the UK’s economy and to the economic wellbeing of individuals and families, in a very difficult period.


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