There’s not been a huge amount to be upbeat about in recruitment during recent weeks, has there? According to a Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) Jobs Outlook survey, between February and March this year, employer confidence in the economy plunged by 22%.
Lockdown and isolation legislation means that many organisations have had to shut or downsize. And in those that have continued operating, we’ve seen companies putting a recruitment freeze in place or pushing back start dates.
So the £40m investment in job-finding support in the UK recently announced by the chancellor has certainly put a smile on our faces.
Described as “an online, one-to-one service to help those who have been unemployed for a short period of time to increase their chance of finding employment,” it’s a really positive move for the thousands of people adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
AND FORTUNATELY, IT IS STRUCTURED TO HAVE A CONSTRUCTIVE EFFECT ON THE RECRUITMENT INDUSTRY TOO
The aim of the support package is to quickly address the challenge that people who have lost their jobs through the pandemic face, that of stagnating skills.
Importantly, it recognises the crucial part that recruiters play in supporting job seekers at this most challenging time. It’s anticipated that the scheme will see the DWP partnering with local recruitment agencies to provide advice that helps people to find jobs, update their CVs, prepare for interviews and investigate options around retraining.
WE CAN SEE SOME CLEAR BENEFITS HERE
It’s a great support for those finding themselves victims of the pandemic lockdown. The jobless can access fast and professional support from recruitment experts, who are ready and waiting to help.
And it will be a boost to the recruitment industry, pushing work through agencies, and supporting them to help address the unemployment crisis we find ourselves in. The scheme will create a situation where recruiters are pivotal in helping the job market – and the economy – to return to growth.
RECRUITMENT WILL RECOVER
We operate in a resilient industry, one that has survived deep recessions and bounced back, and one that contributes £50bn to the economy. And we are fortunate to be working in a time when new technologies give recruiters the means to work smarter and more efficiently.
The government scheme will give a much-appreciated leg up that we hope will kickstart a fast recovery. As lockdown measures ease and we start to see pent-up demand for candidates pull through, the industry will emerge, perhaps slightly bruised, maybe changed a little, but ready to meet the new challenges ahead.