We are in a race for talent and the winners will be the organisations who recognise that it is a war, and who can design, implement and execute a talent attraction and retention strategy that is fit for purpose – it has to be a competitive advantage!
The Office of National Statistics (ONS) showed that the number of UK job vacancies in this period last year was the highest on record since 2001; at 777 000!
(low point of 432 000 in May 2009 and an average of 603 000 from 2001-2017)
In August 2017 the ONS showed the UK employment rate as 75.1% (the proportion of people in work aged 16-65) – the highest since comparable records began in 1971.
Every sector and Geographic location is experiencing growth – whilst skills are in decline.
For example- there is a shortfall of c30 000 engineers in the UK alone.
The government short skills register has grown from 30 skills to 73 in the last year.
Total fertility rates, which can be defined as the average number of children born to a woman who survives her reproductive years (aged 15-49), have decreased by approximately half since the 1960s.
Europe is ageing. On average, each woman has 1.58 children. This is substantially below the 2.1 children needed to sustain the current population (and therefore workforce) level.
The number of foreign tech job applications are down 50% since the EU referendum vote.
The number of foreign recruits in the UK candidate pool has halved since Brexit – a worrying trend in a country where 10% of workers, including a third of those in the all-important tech industry, are international
The latest net migration figure of 246 000 was 81 000 lower than the 327 000 recorded in March 2016 (ONS).
By 2025, Millennials will make up 75% of the global workforce.
Nearly 33% of new hires look for a new job within their first 6 months on the job. Among Millennials this percentage is even higher – and it happens earlier!
Only 32% of talent leaders considered retention as a top priority (LinkedIn recruitment trends)
Analysis of salaries of 42 500 entry level jobs from more than 770 organisations across the Uk show that entry level STEM roles within the software development or engineering could see an increase of wage by 19% to £30 973 and 17% to £30 37 respectively, making these the highest paid entry level roles in the country (Korn Ferry 2016)
Approximately only 1% of candidates / applicants are hired – Lever 2017 (Inside the recruiting Funnel: Essential Metrics for StartUps and SMBs 2017)
We are heading into the “Perfect Storm” – where supply and demand are heavily biased towards the candidate – why should they choose to work for you?
You can no longer buy talent; you can only sell to them – the candidates are your customer. Are they always right? Are you catering for their needs?
If we accept that talent is the principle differentiator for a company’s success in a global, complex, extremely competitive and dynamic environment, then you have to ask the following question.
What are you doing to ensure that you have access to that talent?
Its hard to believe the end of 2017 is racing towards us.
December – Advent Calendar time. And it’s the concept of preparation that strikes me today.
It seems as though a lot of changed during 2017 and that the pace of this change is getting ever faster. Yet some of the key issues we faced in 2017 haven’t actually gone away.
Finding and retaining good quality talent is just as relevant in the final few weeks of the year as it was at the beginning. In fact – if anything its more critical. The skills gap and shortage of tech talent is still there – It is time to listen to the rhetoric. In turbulent political and economic times it is challenging to find a way to plug the leak that is the high attrition rate amongst good staff. And yet when we break down what actually makes an employee stay – it would seem that Christmas is an excellent time to make a start on doing just that. Money is less important than you might think, (which is good in today’s climate!) and in the season of goodwill – it is easier to focus on giving – which for the most part is what contrbutes to an employee’s feelings of satisfaction at work.
So for today – in this festive season – let’s take a moment to review – to prepare – to make sure that 2018 truly does become the year that good people feel valued and appreciated at work.
Some key facts to consider:
IT professionals get twice as many recruitment mails than other professionals!
Contributing factors to employees leaving range from lack of career advancement to culture to lack of recognition. Money is a factor – but get the career aspiration loop right and recompense becomes a much smaller problem than you may think.
It costs your business about half an annual salary to find a replacement employee.
And those new employees are far less engaged and therefore more likely to move on faster which creates cultural uncertainty and higher stress in those remaining employees.
The bottom line is that there is very little point in having an excellent hiring strategy if you then forget all about the employee the minute they sign on the dotted line. Recruitment needs to come hand in hand with retention. And that strategy needs to fit your unique company culture. We know the talent is out there – but the competition is fierce. If your organisation won’t look after its key assets – someone else will!!
Have an optimal onboarding process
Promote your company culture
Develop Effective Leaders
Recognise and Reward
Train and Develop
Pay attention to top performers
Offer an attractive compensation package (think past purely salary here!)
Work – Life balance
Be honest about change
Foster good teamwork
There are 2 predominant schools of thought around the advent of AI – the positive value added approach: Humans X Process X Data = Increased Business Value
Vs The Chicken Licken thought process of “AI is stealing my job, AI is stealing my job”
Not forgetting those Ostriches amongst us who somehow believe that the advances in AI will have little to no impact on current jobs.
One way or another the landscape is changing. How well your company responds to that is very much down to how much agility is valued as a core skill set.
3 years ago Alexa was just a choice of baby name. In the coming years – naming your baby Alexa may not be so popular a choice – as Alexa is now in over 3 million homes, organising babysitters, booking holidays – and in many cases – being a “person” to chat to. Echo AI technology has improved user experiences – and is earning Amazon big bucks in the process. The Key in this is the fact that Alexa responds almost like a person. Alexa applies machine learning and algorithms to run queries through huge data sets almost instantaneously. Spotify applies the same logic – curating your very own DJ set based on previous choices.
Extrapolating that speed for business will surely guide towards better and more objective business outcomes.
Recent surveys by Accenture have highlighted the need for change in our own approaches with 85% of executives surveyed claiming to be investing in AI over the coming 5 years
So there is no doubt that the rise of AI will change the shape of the job market – especially for the lower skilled workforce. In order to safeguard against rising labor costs – automation becomes critical. Yet higher up the salary scale there are predictions of significant human skills shortages in the very area of robotics that is driving the change agenda. So it would seem that the key to AI success is not how to remove humans from the chain altogether, but how to embed them more effectively to participate in human-critical automation of the business, and in the search for novel business methods and models.
Perhaps the most urgent question we must answer is not one of the role of AI in our 21st century workforce but rather one of integration – and whether economics is purely driven by productivity and speed alone?
Used effectively AI has the potential to alter careers to fit a far more personal model. A more agile workforce – a more diverse workforce. But this requires a collaberation with machine learning to improve the human capability
Change is difficult at the best of times – but when the future is moving faster than we can predict it becomes an increasing challenge.
Maybe we should ask Alexa what to do next?
Ruth Maskrey is our Senior Delivery Consultant. Ruth hails from sunny Stockport and prior to joining ISR spent her formative work life as a Soft Skill Systems Trainer and credits this as one of the keys to her success in the recruitment sector. Ruth is one of those rare individuals with an infectious personality who always has a smile on her face and a positive outlook, even in difficult situations. Ruth loves dealing with people, and is always committed to delivering outstanding service to everyone she interacts with and this comes across clearly to everyone who has the pleasure to speak with her!
Let’s see what Ruth had to say……..
Most = helping the candidates through their journey – knowing they have put the effort and energy into the interviews, taken on board the preparation you have given them and then be offered the role J
Least = knowing a really good candidate has withdrawn from the process when it’s been a struggle to find somebody with the right skills
Placing somebody in a role which took around 6 months from the start t to the end, the candidate relocated from Cheshire to London. Met him recently and he loves his job and his family have settled into their new home
Managing staff / mentor
Market yourself, add more information on to your CV, be professional but friendly on the phone and don’t use the word “like!”
Be quicker with constructive feedback on why somebody isn’t right for the role
Tell us what you’re not looking for
Work life balance – knowing you have commitments but also knowing you have a role to fill
Trampolining – I used to compete before my kids were born and recently started going to an adult class – my mind says I can still do it but my body disagrees – brings back happy memories and my competitive streak!
Spinning – it’s a challenge every time I go, but so proud of myself for getting through the class alive
Que sera sera
Laying in a bubble bath watching Jeremy Kyle on YouTube
Contact Ruth on:
Checking in as “Mr Smith”
Saxus Solutions is Mike Smiths’ 1st child – originally conceived back in 2003 – long before the 3 real children actually arrived on the scene.
Mike is a man with his own brand of work ethic. He works (and plays!) hard – and expects the same level of commitment from the team that he surrounds himself with. It was one of the major reasons why he chose to go it alone back in 2003. “I had fallen into recruitment almost by accident! Having spent 20 months overseas working in the fitness industry I returned to the UK without a clear plan. A friend introduced me to recruitment – and it turned out that working in fitness was a great grounding for sales. To get the best out of people in the Gym you need to find out what motivates them, their passions – and how to help them to keep going – turns out I am pretty good at finding out what makes people tick – and putting that to best effect”
Mike is a Sports Science graduate – and frequently has used sport as an analogy for business
It’s not the will to win that matters – everyone has that. It’s the will to prepare to win that matters. – Paul “Bear” Bryant
But most of all – this is a man who works as hard for your careers as he does for his own. He firmly believes that everyone has the right to enjoy, achieve and be rewarded in their working lives.
We get people work – hopefully good and fulfilling work – what a great thing to be doing!
Ironically – given that we are a recruitment agency, the hardest thing is to find the right people to work internally. We are trying to create more than just your average recruitment agency – and that means we are looking for exceptional people to work for Saxus. People that share our vision and passion for getting people not just any job, but THE job. And we want people working for us that feel the same way about their own jobs!
There have been so many over the years that it’s difficult to choose one – so I won’t. Instead I will say – that the things I remember best are our repeat customers. Candidates and clients alike – that come back to us to find the right fit. And that’s because we have provided a memorable service for them. These are the bits I remember best – and there are a lot of them!! Must be doing something right!!!
As we all know all too well – the economic climate over the last 6 or so years has been challenging at best. We aren’t an enormous agency – we value the personal touch. But that brings with it a different set of issues – and merging with a like-minded organisation has been the best way to capitalise on the now (hopefully continuing!)improving economy, and thereby enable us to continue offering our best in class service.
ISR was the natural choice – I have known Iain personally for 20 years – I know how hard he works and how committed he is. We share a similar background – and we definitely share the same vision.
As a highly respected services company that offers a diverse set of solutions, throughout Europe!
Easy – Preparation! It’s critical! We can help with this!!
Hire for potential. By that I mean look for those candidates that show a willingness and ability – but necessarily all the current correct skills. Think long term. If a candidate can already do everything then where do they go? If you can take the right attitude and develop it – you may have a total career match!
Take a long term view and make sure your success is by design and not through luck. Design a process that works for you, understand your business and do not focus on the money. If you focus on the service, the financial and personal rewards will come!
This is a difficult one, and one we all need to work at constantly. I love my job – and I think it’s really important for my kids to see me work hard and be happy doing so. That said – I also have to remember to evaluate all my opportunities. There may be another time to have a meeting – but my kids will only ever have one 1st day of starting school. It’s about working smarter these days. Use the advances in technology to our advantage, make the time count – and that gives you the opportunity to ensure that there is a balance.. but it’s tricky.. perhaps the best advice is to turn the work mobile off for at least some of your weekend… down time does make you more productive..
Not checking your work emails all weekend!! What was that I said about balance?!
Running – I have run track all my life and have really enjoyed getting back into it again as a “veteran” athlete. I love the challenge, it keeps me fit and is a great way to let off steam
Reading and Learning. Not something I would ever have considered as a hobby at school – but I am now a voracious reader. I am also studying for a Masters Degree in Social Anthropology – and the reason why we do the things we do is fascinating. There are books everywhere in our house – from the dodgy chick lit (my wife NOT me!) to Foucault to “the Tiger who came to Tea”. I am hoping that my kids will also learn to love learning – just because you can rather than necessarily to pass a test!
Liars – I can deal with most things – but people who try to squirm out things by lying don’t go down well. We all screw up – it’s how you deal with it that makes the difference!
Mess… interestingly none of us in my family are great at being tidy – yet we all hate mess… There is obviously a solution that we haven’t figured out yet.. But I would love to be better at sorting the chaos of a home with 3 young kids!
Play the Hand you are dealt!!
Just because Fate doesn’t deal you the right cards, it doesn’t mean you should give up. It just means you have to play the cards you get to their maximum potential.
I am lucky in that my life is full of experiences that give me pleasure. As for a guilty one…..if it made me feel guilty I probably would not do it…either that or I just do not have a conscience!!
And so there you have it – Mr Smith. A man who genuinely believes that excellence is a direct result of always trying to do better. And in that respect – we can all achieve excellence – just keep on keeping on!!
Contact Mike at:
45 Beech St
TEL: 0207 953 9760
FAX: 0207 593 9764
MEET OUR NEWEST TEAM MEMBER
The IS Recruitment team is continuing to grow to meet the increasing needs of our clients and we are excited to announce that we’ve added a new member to our team. Emma Lloyd joins us as a Senior Consultant. Emma has spent the last 12 years, providing Change and Transformation recruitment & consultancy services to various sectors particularly within the financial services arena. Emma’s direct and personal style, has allowed her to develop long lasting business relationships over the years, most of which are still ongoing.
Having represented her county & country she is particularly proud to have a World Team Championship and World Individual title to her name at the Mounted Games. Emma has developed a sense of discipline and dedication which she applied to her career and credits this as one of the reasons for her success.
Let’s see what Emma had to say further;
Most = People and relationships are the best part of my job.
Least = I find it so hard to see really great people who are out of work lose their self-belief.
Not enough hours in the day!
I have been really lucky to work on some complex Change & Transformation programmes over the last decade. I can’t single just one moment out, but I get a real sense of pride from my candidates or consultants from a week, month, year or decade ago delivering high impact change.
In an ideal world opening an office for ISR in Barbados!
It is really important to take the time to get your submission right first time – there are rarely second chances! Work with your recruitment consultant to understand the role, culture and the clients’ goals before preparing your resume & additional information.
It’s really important that the right balance is found between the delivery requirements of the business against procurement/HR’s drive to reduce recruitment spend. Once the right recruitment/resource partner has been selected then open & honest communication throughout the process is paramount.
Utilising your time properly, it is so easy to get caught up in the ‘trivial’ that you miss what is really important.
Horses have been a huge part of my life and I am really grateful for the opportunities I have been given; I’m particularly proud of representing my county, region & country in a number of disciplines.
I’m a sports fan in general but I’m an MUFC girl (tricky when my boss is a blue).
Traffic jams and ‘Middle-lane hogs’ – I spend far too much time sat in traffic jams and a lot of these could be avoided if only people could drive properly!
Go hard or go home!
Michael O’Leary is our resident Insurance and Wealth Management Consultant here at Saxus; he has been with the organisation since 2011 after studying in Computing and Management at Loughborough University, which has enabled him to have a deeper understanding of IT Recruitment and the latest technologies. Michael plays an integral role in the team here at Saxus having worked on all areas of the business over the last 4+ years covering the full project lifecycles and numerous technologies (.NET being the most prominent).
Michael prides himself on getting to know both his candidates and clients personally to ensure that the optimum level of service is delivered consistently. He doesn’t just know technical people – he actually knows what those people do.
Let’s see what Michael had to say…
WHAT ARE THE MOST/LEAST ENJOYABLE ASPECTS OF RECRUITING?
Most = Helping people into work / that ideal job
Least = Candidates that don’t turn up to arranged interviews/then dodge all efforts which is made to contact them.
WHAT IS THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE OF THE JOB?
Changing the somewhat tainted opinion of the stereotypical ‘recruiter’. in doing so, opening up clients eyes to better ways of working
WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR MOST MEMORABLE MOMENT IN THE JOB?
Placing your first candidate is always up there
WHERE DO YOU SEE Your Career IN 10 YEARS?
ANY TOP TIPS FOR CANDIDATES?
In-depth interview preparation – looking at the company website is very veneer and everybody does that. More is needed in order to stand out from the rest.
ANY TOP TIPS FOR CLIENTS?
Feedback – whether good or bad is always key!
LIFE’S BIGGEST CHALLENGE?
Not enough hours in the day
TWO HOBBIES – AND WHY?
Fitness – Personally a healthy lifestyle and exercise plays a pivotal role in my life
Football – has been since a very young age
TWO PET HATES AND WHY?
Plug socket switches ‘on’ & not off
People using ‘like’ as a fill word
WHAT’S ONE QUOTE THAT YOU LIVE YOUR LIFE BY?
“Speak how you wish to be spoken to, Treat people how you want to be treated”
WHAT IS YOUR GUILTY PLEASURE?
More than ever before – IT sits at the heart of everything “business”.It is no longer a question of having an IT department, it is now more that IT its an overarching business principle.Business now is totally dependent on being digital – and this means changing the way we have traditionally viewed our IT departments!
Digital places IT at a critical juncture: change or be changed. IT MUST be a partner in driving business value; How exciting that IT is truly instrumental in marrying technology AND talent to realise business outcomes and innovation.
Managing your IT talent is becoming ever more critical to business success.The traditional role of the IT professional no longer exists and an increasing number of “new IT professionals” are now embedded throughout the organisation, meaning that innovation can and will happen independently of the IT department! This requires a balancing of the skills triangle – Business + digital + technology, and IT leaders MUST help the workforce adopt new roles accordingly.
The pool from which IT talent can be drawn from is also now a global pond.IT workers are highly mobile and can be from a broad geographical and cultural base.This requires a shift in focus to managing IT diversity which as well as managing a need for more business and market savvy IT professionals than ever before.
On the whole this is a massively positive change – IT professionals are now genuine partners in driving change across the organisation. But as we all know – “ Mindset” is a slow turning ship however reluctance to embrace the new distribution of your IT department throughout the business will slow the rate of advances to be made.
So what should you do about this? Well it will require a degree of reinvention and a move away from the traditional company structure! Invent a new IT organization; new structures and interaction models that make best use of skills and capabilities across the whole organization.
Now is the time to fix those “legacy issues”. Proactively start strategic workforce planning. In order to deliver multispeed IT a huge degree of flexibility is required.Your plan needs to consider how to re-skill, attract and source talent that matches both the digital demand of the business and IT.
So think about Refining the “IT department” – into the IT business.This subtle yet critical mindset shift will help to bring about a more genuine partnership role. IT will now be a driver in business innovation.
And IT professionals…. there is a mindset and cultural shift for you here too. As IT becomes a more integrated department – this will require more than just typical skills. Ensure that you are “skills savvy” (see blog post on soft skills) and be ready to deliver innovation wherever it’s needed throughout the organisation!
THIS MONTH WE WOULD LIKE TO INTRODUCE YOU TO OUR TEAM ADMINISTRATOR HOLLIE MARTIN.
As ISR’s Team Administrator, Hollie is command central and keeps us all organised. And while we could speak of her gazillion daily accomplishments, we’ll just cut to the chase and simply state that her multi-tasking abilities is simply superhuman.
If there was a competition for managing multiple activities from several phone conversations, whilst simultaneously engaging with people at her desk, solving scheduling conflicts, fixing the printer, preparing reports, processing payments, invoices and generally keeping the team happy we are confident Hollie would take the prize.
Along with her practical, common sense and willingness to help all who ask, Hollie also possesses a wonderful (& necessary) sense of humour.
Let’s see what Hollie had to say
Most = seeing how happy the recruiters are when they have helped a candidate get a job.
Least = When a candidate is unsuccessful in their interview.
Making sure contractors get their timesheets in on time.
Putting together our ‘Grand Opening and 10 year anniversary’ event.
Hopefully managing an admin team
Always spell check your C.V and plan your journey to your interview to make sure you won’t be late.
The more information we receive, the better service we can provide.
Juggling work whilst being a mum to two children, with one going through terrible twos.
Taking the kids out on days out and dancing in shows such as musicals and pantomimes.
Rudeness and people being petty – just because it’s not nice.
All reality T.V
JOB DESCRIPTION: A UK based software and services company that provides systems to the financial services market with an international client-base is looking to add a C# Developer to their current team.They are seeking a developer to work with the Development and Support group on their leading edge financial applications. Candidates will be considered with