Recruitment Is A Good Place To Be Right Now
The first quarter of 2016 didn’t hang about did it? We’re already in April and in terms of recruitment events, we have been spoilt for choice this year. In the first part of 2016 we’ve had events ranging from the Recruitment Agency Expo, (the annual gathering of southern based recruiters), to Compliance conferences (all the rage this season) and of course, we had the TEAM National Networking Conference in February.
For some, and for reasons we don’t necessarily discuss, the latter may be a hazy memory! So if you missed the TEAM Conference or need a handy recap. Here’s a rundown of the key talking points from the day, and a nod to the other recruitment events so far this year.
- Recruitment is (mostly) a good place to be right now
We all know the good news about employment, it’s at record levels as is the unemployment rate. Most recruiters and industry specialists will have one eye on skills shortages but confidence is returning to the UK economy and people are on the move. The latest Jobs Outlook from the REC shows that more than 8 out of 10 businesses surveyed plan to hire more permanent staff in the next 3 months. Definitely good news for recruiters.
There is an edge of caution despite the positive stats though. With changes to T&S and the upcoming European referendum, it’s certainly not the time to be complacent ….
- 2016 is all about upping your game
The number crunchers might paint a rosy picture of the recruitment and employment industry but it’s always going to be competitive. Finding the best candidates is a challenge that is unlikely to go away. To just keep up with industry growth (let alone exceed it), you’ll need to bring your ‘A’ game.
Most of the seminars and workshops we attended at each of the events, and most especially at the TEAM Conference were popular. Seats were filled and delegates frantically scribbled notes about the candidate experience, writing effective job adverts and ninja sourcing techniques. My speaking slot on Using Recruitment Tech to Harvest Candidate Information, in collaboration with Voyager Software, was a full house. Training Specialists Recruitment Matters International were busy in their seminar room all day and, as always, Julia Doherty from Green Umbrella, left the audience full of top tips and takeaways.
Those attending events are hungry to learn. And rightly so, it is the perfect forum to get a bucket load of training for little to no cost and ensure you’re upping your game.
- Bigger isn’t always better
The lure of the bright lights doesn’t necessarily mean better value. Taking the TEAM Conference as a prime example. This 1 day event has limited spaces and comes with a small price tag but the value far outweighs it. There was the opportunity to hear from at least 7 speakers, meet the job boards and participate in organised speed networking. I came away with a stack of business cards, a host of new connections and even more ideas to take back to ISV.
The larger, more established London events were still good for making useful contacts and generating content ideas but footfall felt low and a lot of the same companies were there as in previous years. In terms of takeaways, it is a case of quality over quantity for us.
- Recruitment Tech Must Do More
A vast proportion of exhibitors at the two London Olympia Shows (Rec Expo and In-House Rec Expo) were recruitment tech suppliers. Most of the major CRM systems were there, plus job posting tools and notable names from the major job boards. The TEAM Conference had their fair share of recruitment tech suppliers too.
I don’t claim to know each system inside out but the majority of recruitment tech solutions are excellent in their own right. The key here being ‘in their own right’. Many systems standalone so you have to waste valuable time logging into multiple platforms or waiting until you are back in the office before accessing data. Recruitment technology must do more. To feel the benefits and stand out, your systems need to integrate. Your skills testing should be talking to your CRM software. Your CRM should be pulling in candidate information from social media channels and so on.
As a tech provider here, we spend an increasing amount of time looking at integration. It’s available with our skills testing system FastPath, through the likes of other TEAM suppliers RDB ProNet, Voyager’s Infinity and Logic Melon’s job posting tool.
- Recruiters like to celebrate
This is not news, I know. In its 4th year, the TEAM Conference shows no signs of slowing down. In terms of celebration and party atmosphere, it gets bigger and better every year. We celebrated letting our hair down after a day full of focused learning, we celebrated the TEAM Member of the year (congratulations Anton and the Active Solutions team) and we celebrated the TEAM Xchange competition. Andy Morton from BBE Recruitment and the gang from Wagstaff could have gone home splitting £1000 cash if they had just stayed around for half an hour longer at the end of the conferences. Never fear though, cheques made their way to the right people so congrats and enjoy spending the winnings. Other TEAM members – get your split fees in asap, you never know your luck!
These are just some of the highlights and talking points from February’s recruitment events especially the TEAM Conference. There are so many recruitment events these days, it’s tricky deciding which to go for. Like you, the ISV team are busy people. We’re choosy about the events we attend and time spent out of the office needs to be well invested. It certainly was with the TEAM Conference so we hope we’ll be seeing you there next year!
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