Stuart Gentle Publisher at Onrec

How the Recruitment Industry is Responding to COVID-19

Lillie Ubeid, Marketing Programme Manager

At the beginning of April, more than 300 professionals across the recruitment industry took part in a benchmark survey and had their say about the impact COVID-19 has had on their jobs, their business and their life. Led by performance marketing specialists Talent Nexus, and supported by 9 other suppliers to the industry including Volcanic, an Access Group company, the objective was to gain a deeper understanding of the challenges being faced as a result of coronavirus.

From this we have been able to gather insights and paint a more accurate picture of the challenges being faced by the industry, and the actions being employed by businesses in order to survive.

The survey data highlighted clear discrepancies between how recruitment agencies are responding to the current challenges in comparison to employers. Both agency and in-house recruiters indicate their top priorities as reducing costs and filling existing vacancies, suggesting the industry is still in a reactive mode to survive the immediate impact of the pandemic. Recruitment agencies have been quick to react to this through headcount reductions, a very different picture to in-house recruiters. For example:

  • 55% of recruitment agencies had either implemented or are considering redundancies, whereas only 9% of in-house recruiters had already implemented redundancies, with 47% not considering.

Such discrepancies were extended to actions around furloughed staff, salary cuts and reduced working hours. While this date perhaps confirms what many of us had already witnessed across the industry, the results certainly weren't all doom and gloom. 

The evidence of knee-jerk reactions undoubtedly reflects the agility of the industry, and when delving deeper into the results it is clear that recruitment agencies are also using this time effectively to re-evaluate their business so that they can bounce back just as quick. The data also shed light on the community aspect of our industry, with many respondents offering words of encouragement for their peers to pull through these challenging times. 

The Volcanic Marketing team, Lillie Ubeid and Rachael Moss, join Client Services Director of Talent Nexus, Rob Prince, in a webinar where they discuss the results of the survey in more detail, with a focus on:

  • impact on jobs
  • impact on businesses
  • impact on people
  • impact on suppliers
  • steps towards recovery

Our webinar is available for you to watch on demand

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