Stuart Gentle Publisher at Onrec

Comment: 2021 recruitment trends

Dean Sadler, CEO at Tribepad

The one trend we cannot ignore is our new style of working. Remote working is here to stay. For many, it brings that work/life balance we have come to appreciate. However, whilst lockdown has taken away the commute, it has also taken us away from basic human interactions. The cornerstone of successful working relationships.

Looking forward, we will try to get the best of both worlds. The option of working from home, with the reassurance of having an assigned desk in the office. But times are tough, and money needs to be spent wisely, which is why we will see a rise in hub offices next year. With fewer employees in the office, business owners don’t need to pay for an office that holds capacity for the whole team.

Looking at the wider recruitment strategy for businesses in 2021, by spring - when we will hopefully begin to see it pick up - there will be a huge influx of job applications. As businesses will start to open their recruiting doors again. While we have seen mass job losses, we will likely, and hopefully, witness a mass hiring spree. 

A recent report has suggested that throughout COVID-19, firms have been spurred to look inwards for appropriate talent. And this will most likely be the case for larger businesses throughout 2021. They have the capability and funds to invest in wider learning and development programmes; building up their current employees’ skills, rather than them having to outsource for new talent. 

However, SMEs that are suffering financially, may have to adopt new recruitment strategies. Either paying less in the long-run by outsourcing talent - which may take far more time and money than they ideally would like to spend. Or automating inefficient processes and utilising the skills they currently have in their current workforce. Each business is different, and will need to do what is right for them. 

The success, or failure, of managing employee health and wellbeing will also be a massive trend in 2021. 2020 has put a huge amount of pressure on employees' mental state, with the impact of COVID-19 putting a pause on many career goals. It will be HR teams and line managers’ roles to help employees manage the implications the crisis has had on their wellbeing. Especially those who were put on furlough, who haven’t been working for months on end. It has been an uncertain time for all, but there are plenty of ways businesses can help employees maintain positive mental health. Regular one-to-one catch ups, or mental health first aiders and support groups, will go a long way in supporting those in need during this challenging time.