Stuart Gentle Publisher at Onrec

Employers taking longer to recruit during pandemic, but quality of applications has improved

CV-Library's latest study ‘Hiring during a pandemic’ reveals how organisations have adapted their recruitment processes in recent months

According to a new study from CV-Library, the UK’s leading independent job board, four in 10 (40.2%) employers say their time to hire has increased during the pandemicHowever, it appears that it’s worth it, as one in three (32.9%) say the quality of applications they’re receiving has got better.

The job board surveyed 100 of its most active clients, including in-house and agency recruiters, to gain an understanding of how companies have adapted their hiring efforts during the pandemic. It reveals that 83.1% have made changes to their recruitment process, with 83.8% stating that these changes are here to stay. These include:

  • - Introducing video interviews where face-to-face meetings aren’t an option (87%)
  • - Improving communication to ensure candidates are aware of delays (55.1%)
  • - Amending job adverts to acknowledge the current situation (49.3%)
  • - Investing in new technologies to help manage the process effectively (26.1%)
  • - Investing in virtual onboarding to bring in new hires quickly and successfully (20.3%)
  • - Introducing more rounds of interviews to help build rapport with candidates (15.9%)

Lee Biggins, founder and CEO of CV-Library, comments: Prior to the pandemic, there were a number of factors disrupting the world of recruitment. But, as COVID-19 swept our nations, the job market was completely flipped on its head and there’s been a massive shift in power. In many cases, hiring professionals have the upper hand as demand for jobs is outstripping supply; but this doesn’t mean recruiters should abandon all the hard work they’ve put into their candidate engagement efforts in recent years.

“How you interact with candidates during this time will be remembered. Yes, it may take a little longer than usual to recruit, but adapting to this new norm is going to be key. We know that a lot of organisations have been investing in technology to help them hire remotely, while also ensuring they’re continuing to build rapport with applicants and that the right hire is made. This is going to be crucial going forward.”

Alongside this, CV-Library's research reveals that 71.1% of organisations are hiring less people at the moment; 14.5% are hiring more and a further 14.5% are hiring the same amount as they were before the pandemic hit. Just over a third (36.3%) say that their time to hire has remained the same, while 23.2% sait decreased.

Looking at quality of applications, one in five (22%) respondents said that the quality of applications they’ve received over the past few months has got worse; while 28% sathey’ve stayed the same.

Biggins continues: “Naturally, the recruitment process was never going to be plain sailing during this time. If it’s taking you longer than usual to hire then this isn’t a major problem; as long as you’re making the right decisions and not compromising your level of service. Our research study has given us some fantastic insights into how organisations are adapting and there appears to be a general consensus to ‘keep calm and carry on’. This mentality will definitely pay off as we navigate through the recovery and we’re seeing some positive signs that the job market is slowly climbing its way out of the dark hole it’s been in over the past few months.”

For more information, download CV-Library's latest whitepaper ‘Hiring during a pandemic: How to futureproof your recruitment efforts’.