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UK recruiters positive for 2018 but Brexit and GDPR concerns linger

Over three-quarters (77 percent) of recruitment professionals anticipate an increase in company revenue next year, indicating a largely positive financial outlook for the industry in 2018.

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Bullhorn

According to a new report from Bullhorn, the cloud computing company that helps staffing and recruiting organisations transform their businesses, overall confidence levels for industry performance are up.  A quarter of respondents (25 percent) feel more confident about the future heading into 2018, compared to 10 percent this time last year.

Still, firms noted several concerns about the industry for 2018. Looming macroeconomic and political developments are clouding the horizon, with 70 percent stating that they are concerned with the future impact of Brexit, and 59 percent saying the same of EU GDPR.

Peter Linas, Bullhorn’s Executive Vice President of Corporate Development and International, comments: “Recruiters should be optimistic about revenue growth, but they must be realistic: around a quarter of agencies say they actually fell short of their revenue predictions last year.”

“We will see strong hiring demand in 2018, especially in the temporary and contract markets. But to stand a chance of reaching their revenue goals, agencies must be prepared to defend their bill rates and margins against constant pressure.”

In the coming year, recruitment professionals will continue to encounter more opportunities to utilise technology, but adoption levels leave a lot to be desired. More than half (52 percent) hope to increase their overall technology investment this year to improve client and candidate engagement, as well as become more efficient in performing their day-to-day activities.

Nearly a quarter (22 percent) of recruiters rank existing contacts from a recruitment CRM as their best source of qualified candidates, while 59 percent rank it in their top three alongside other sources such as referrals from successful placements, job boards, and social media.

“It’s important for agencies not to delay in adopting technology that boosts efficiency and innovation. All too often the value of CRM technology is underestimated,” adds Linas.

“However, as the responsibility of client and candidate experience moves away from individual recruiters and becomes shared across every department within the business, it will become more important than ever before.”

Bullhorn’s 2018 UK Recruitment Trends Report: The Industry’s Outlook for 2018 is available for free download today. The report takes an in-depth look into current trends amongst UK recruitment agencies and analyses the industry’s outlook for 2018, highlighting revenue forecasts, prevailing business priorities and challenges, and adoption of emerging technologies.