Figures* out this week show that people are half as likely to be leaving their jobs as they were 13 years ago and this has impacted on the number of permanent places available for those that are searching for a new position. With such a contracted market, the opportunities are limited although temporary and contract work has increased over the last two months.
According to the ONS, 2.4% of workers in the UK left their main job in 2011 compared to 4.5% in 1998 with the most common reason being due to redundancy due to the recession (no surprises there) or people resigning due to a variety of reasons.
So if you’re searching for a new role; all the more reason to be very focused and specific about what you’re looking for and make sure your search is extremely targeted. A proactive approach is essential. Identify the top 10 companies you want to work for and why. Use contacts where you’ve got them or a good search and selection agency who specialise in your area of expertise. They’ll know the right people to approach or will already be aware of positions that are coming up. Things are moving slowly these days but there are still some good opportunities out there so maintaining a positive mindset will get you there.
*Report on Jobs by the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) and KPMG and the Office for National Statistics (ONS)
You’ve got a new job offer and your company outbids your prospective employer to win you back. How do you feel. Elated? Smug? Absolutely sorted for the foreseeable future?
What you might want to consider are the downsides;
- Employers who have been let down will often blacklist you – and recruiters may be sceptical the next time you approach them.
- You may damage your reputation in the market, particularly if you are in a senior position and well known.
- Your current employer will inevitably want you to prove that you are justifying your new salary and/or position. As will your colleagues.
- There will be reasons why you want to leave the company – can money or a better pension package make it worthwhile if it’s quality of life, personal development, values and happiness that may be at stake?
So, think long and hard about why you want to leave your current company. If you have issues with your employer – maybe your boss, your salary or the way things are done, then a frank and honest conversation with them can often improve things. Do this before looking for a new role or as early in the recruitment process as possible and then decide how you will respond to a counter offer and stick to it.
I’m seeing a big change in my global clients this year towards a very focused search strategy. Whereas most companies were using online job boards until recently, many are now cutting back. Applications have risen since the recession and even more so now as candidates are feeling safer about moving on, but many applications to online job postings are from candidates entirely unqualified for the roles on offer.
Organisations are instead relying on professional networking sites such as LinkedIn to find candidates, promoting their internal referral schemes and/or using specialist executive search companies who will go the extra mile to find the candidate who ticks all the right boxes – experience, skill set, values that match those of the company, personality that will gel with the current team and make a positive impression on clients, etc, before they are even put forward to the company – thereby saving the organisation a huge amount in time and resources.
As such companies are refining their processes, reducing the number of recruitment firms they are working with and are focusing on building strong relationships with 2 or 3 key recruitment/search companies to help them find the right people for the roles. McGraw Stone has benefitted from its speciality niche and seen a strong increase in the number of roles across its main client base.
It is well known that recruitment methods have changed hugely over the last few years. Previously candidates would scour trade magazines and send off targeted covering letters and CVs. The Sunday Times Appointments section was once a heavy supplement in itself and used extensively by executive recruitment companies. Not any more.
Now the ambitious and switched on candidate will be making extensive use of social media and the one I always recommend is LinkedIn. Having just gone public and reaching a market value of nearly $9 billion last week the attraction is clear. Networking has always been a winner in terms of sourcing new jobs and LinkedIn offers the ability to network quickly and in depth. And it works.
As a recruiter for some of the largest global companies, I find LinkedIn invaluable for sourcing and researching prospective candidates. So my advice to you is;
- Ensure your LinkedIn page is right up to date and includes qualifications, education, career roles and your interests. Plus, include any achievements or awards. What have you done that would make me contact you?
- If you’re interested in working for a global company, make sure your profile is suitably international – LinkedIn is used worldwide and is one of the few foreign social networking companies that can operate in China where it has about a million users and is growing.
- Ensure your profiles contain the key words that you either currently use in your role or aspire to use in your ongoing career. Or go on training courses that will fulfil that criteria.
- Link to recruiters who specialise in your area of work – they will be searching for you online but having you approach them directly gives you a huge step ahead of your competitors.
- Make sure your contact details are up-to-date, you don’t want a message going to an old email address.
- Ensure that any other social media sites you use portray a professional image of yourself. It is becoming the norm for employers to search for you online as part of the selection process.
Nick Davies can be reached via LinkedIn or email to email@example.com.
I can bet that if you haven’t been faced with the threat of redundancy then you will certainly know someone close to you who has. The prospect of losing your job, going through a redundancy consultation process and being made redundant itself is incredibly stressful. The impact on self-esteem, family relationships and of course the worry of finances is overwhelming and people react to difficult times in very different ways. A coach I know recommends doing the following. Have a think about an occasion in the past when you had to be emotionally resourceful. It may have been an event as a child such as during exams, facing a difficult situation at work, during a life changing event such as a period following a bereavement. You got through it because of your strength. Often, when you’re feeling overwhelmed with stress and are anxious about the future, remembering resourcefulness that you might have forgotten you had will help you to dig deep for inner strength. This is a good way of helping you to feel back in control and to focus on a plan for the future including finding your next career move.