What will post-COVID-19 recruitment look like?

COVID-19 has had a substantial impact on the recruitment industry, so it would be naïve to expect things to go back to the way they were once this is all over. Not right away, anyway.

We’ve already seen some major changes to how the industry operates, and while some of these will be short term until the economy recovers, there are some ways that COVID-19 has changed the way recruitment will be run from this point forward.

Here are three difference between the pre-COVID world and the post-COVID world for the recruitment industry.

The sales-driven recruitment market

You’ve may have already noticed that the market has made a flip from being candidate-driven to sales-driven, and as most industries are unfortunately still making redundancies, we’re likely to see this sales-driven market continue after COVID-19.

Recruiting in a sales-driven recruitment market means you can expect to get a lot of applications to every job that is advertised, so one area you’ll need to become efficient in is screening out unsuitable candidates.

Unfortunately, having a lot more active candidates on your books doesn’t mean it’ll be much easier to fill jobs either. With more candidates on the market, clients are likely to become even more picky about your shortlists, so finding purple squirrel candidates will still be important.

Recruitment niches will yet become twice as niche

Recruiting in a particular niche has become more necessary over the last few years; but now that the market has contracted, clients will expect your niche to be an inch wide and a mile deep. When there are more candidates on the market, you must specialise in a niche that your clients are still struggling to find the best talent in. Otherwise, you’ll just be offering them candidates that they can easily find themselves, and why would they pay a fee for that?

The good news is your experience recruiting in a candidate-short market will have taught you everything you need to know about attracting hard-to-find candidates in your niche. To win business in an ultra-specialised niche, you’ll need to be a true consultant to your clients.

They’ll be coming to you for expert advice and will expect you to have a detailed understanding of your market. If the ‘you got any jobs?’ approach was failing before COVID-19 – it’s likely to die not too long afterwards.

Temp and contract recruitment will grow

During times of economic uncertainty, temp and contract recruitment tends to stay active as companies feel more comfortable employing non-permanent staff when they’re unsure about the future of the market.

The unfortunate reality of this pandemic is that nothing is certain about the economy until a vaccine is discovered. So even as lockdown ends, no one knows if there could be a second wave of the virus that’ll send us all back into quarantine, and this is a huge blocker on company hiring strategies.

Until then, you can expect to see higher rates of temp and contract recruitment in most industries. Recruitment agencies are uniquely placed to offer temp and contract services to clients, and this will help make them indispensable until the market stabilises.