It’s a buyers market

A client recently described the current recruiting environment  as a ‘buyers’ market. We understand the sentiment – candiates are no longer desperate for a job, they are discerning about which jobs they will apply for.

It’s not easy finding the right candidates at times of high employment and the cost of taking on the wrong person can be high – potentially many thousands of pounds invested in recruitment, on boarding, training plus the hidden consequential costs of unhappy colleagues and customers (not to mention the cost of re-recruitment).

Here are our five tips for staying ahead of the curve at a time when employment rates are high and candidates are in the driving seat.

1. Be creative

More and more of the best employers are telling us that they will find or adapt roles for the best talent. When they recognise that a candidate has the qualities they need, they are prepared to invest in ‘technical’ training to ensure they don’t miss out on the opportunity to bring in people that can make a long term contribution to the goals of the business.

2. Be decisive

In a ‘buyers’ market, more than ever you have to be prepared to take action and avoid losing candidates because of slow follow up. Good candidates have choices and lack of timely follow up can suggest indifference and discourtesy. It is the number one frustration candidates have with employers that is shared on social media. Don’t become a bad news story!

3. Communicate your employer brand

Use attractive language that highlights the benefits and rewards of working in your organisation. Instead of just listing 15 things that candidates must have in order to apply, take the opportunity to hook candidates and convince them that they ‘have’ to work for you. Communicate positive messages on social media and make sure the ‘work for us’ pages on your web site a kept up to date and inspire potential employees.

4. It’s not always about ‘fit’

If you always do what you always did you will always get what you always got. Sometimes you need to bring in people who will challenge the existing culture and bring new ideas. Don’t automatically dismiss good people because they might not ‘fit in’ – they might just bring the energy you need to move your business to the next level.

5. Apply some TLC

Make your recruitment process candidate friendly by using some TLC – Thinking Like a Candidate. Put yourself in the shoes of a potential employee and ask yourself if your recruitment process is candidate friendly or if it there just to make your life easier. Remember that every person that goes through your recruitment process, whether you take them on or not, has the potential to share their experience far and wide. Treat candidates as, hopefully, you treat your best customers.

Recruiting the right people has never been easy and it’s even more difficult right now. Investing more effort in these five tips should help.

Tricia Hay and David Tovey

Want help with how to attract the best candidates? Contact