The Frustrations Being Felt by the Recruitment Sector

Autumn often brings with it a recruitment rush.


With the end of the summer holidays, the traditional vacation allows people time to revaluate their current career path and job role – perhaps signalling time for change for many employees.


Children may be starting school and parents need to find a workplace which is accommodating to school hours and recently graduated students are embarking on their journey into employment post-study.



Regardless of the reason, recruitment is high on the agenda for many as the seasons change.


In fact, a survey by CV Library found that the UK experience a 10.7% increase in advertised vacancies compared to the same period last year. The top areas for growth were Bristol, Sheffield and Glasgow, with key industries such as social care, manufacturing and accounting seeing more roles advertised year on year.


Government statistics go on to confirm the recruitment rush over the summer period, with 783,000 jobs advertised in the period from July to September this year, up 32,000 on the previous period. More people are also in work when compared to last year, up by 317,000 and an increase of 0.6%.


All of this is, of course, positive for recruitment agencies who not only have more vacancies to recruit for, but are also seeing employment rates rise and positions filled. Yet, it also brings with it issues which recruiters are being challenged with.


Below are some of the most common frustrations being felt by recruiters across the board.


No attention to detail in applications


Basic mistakes are some of the most common irritations that recruiters have, with any candidates making spelling mistakes on their CV or grammar errors in cover letters, having poor email etiquette and not preparing adequately for interviews.


Charlotte Bulton at Luna Child Collective has found this to be an issue when recruiting for Nannies,


“We work with a dual market, (nannies and UHNW clients) and it’s imperative that the candidates we recruit are exceptional. We have found over the past 12-18 months that there is a huge lack of effort when applying for Nanny positions. Which is frustrating as these are usually very luxury job positions which include extensive worldwide travel, luxury properties, cars etc. Not to mention salaries of £1,000 per week plus.


Candidates may very well be extremely experienced but if they show lack of enthusiasm and cannot be bothered to update their CV, send the relevant documents then unfortunately they will start missing out on great job opportunities.”


Candidates who only refer to their CV during an interview


The idea of an interview is to expand on what has been stated on a CV and in a cover letter, yet many candidates often refer back to what is on their CV, failing to expand and give any further detail. Interviewers can already see what has been said on a CV and are interested in finding out more about the what, where, who and why behind the statement.


Candidates need to strike the balance between ensuring that their CV has enough detail on is so that it covers a point thoroughly, yet doesn’t overwhelm someone reading the CV and allows room for expansion on the point in an interview scenario.


Candidates should look at their CV from an interviewer’s point of view – what are they likely to want to know off the back of said point. Is it the success that a project had? How a problem was overcome? Looking through their CV and assessing where questions may be asked can ensure that a candidate is readily prepared.


Failing to prepare for an interview is cited by over three-quarters of recruiters as being one of the biggest bug-bears.


Failing to widen professional experience


Candidates who fail to widen their professional experience are also missing out on positions as they show little interest for developing themselves in or out of work. While employees should be proactive in seeking out ways that they can develop themselves, firms also need to acknowledge the role they play in employee development. Improving staff retention and bettering an employee within the organisation, it’s something which many businesses are failing to do that can have a good impact on employee and employer.


Carolyn Thompson from Hales Jobs comments; 


“Little development quickly becomes apparent during the interview process, and can ruin an individual’s chances with an organisation in future roles, along with the one that they have applied for.


Candidates should seek out ways in which they can deepen their knowledge and strengthen their skill set by asking their current line manager to analyse the areas that they are weaker in and arrange further training to understand how the role they are in benefits the wider organisation. Seeking out mentoring or shadowing opportunities, along with online course or workshops run by industry bodies are all ways that candidates can actively expand their knowledge and experience and hone skills such as critical thinking and problem solving.”


Fast-moving market 


Nikki Bott, Senior Consultant, Digital and Consumer at Mackenzie Jones comments;


“In a fast paced, technology driven world, communications including interviews can be instantaneous, and there is an expectation from tech-savvy candidates that things move quickly. Whilst we understand there is a need for internal recruitment processes to be followed the pace of the market dictates the pace at which the recruitment process needs to move, and right now it is a fast-moving, candidate driven market.


Many businesses are losing their first choice due to lengthy processes and being pipped to the post by not making decisions quickly enough. It is a naïve view to think that if a candidate wants to work for your business enough that they will hold off all other opportunities and make it work.


In a market where Digital talent is in high demand, the candidates with which we work will often have two or three processes on the go at once, if one of these processes is taking considerably longer than the others, they will not risk losing out on an offer by waiting for it to catch up.


With many processes to follow, recruiters are facing the pressure to keep up with their competitors to ensure that they do not lose out on candidates. When the recruitment rush is on, this can be particularly testing for recruiters who have an increased number of vacancies to fill.


Revaluating processes will ensure that only essential procedures are completed. Taking the time to explain each stage to candidates can also ensure that they are aware of what is going on at any given time, reducing their frustration and increasing the likelihood that they will take up your position.


Autumn may bring with it a recruitment rush, but for recruiters it brings with it an increasing number of frustrations. The overall advice to candidates? Do your research, be proactive in your job search and self-development and proof anything that may be seen by a recruiter or potential employer – you don’t want a spelling error to cost you your dream role.

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