In a time of uncertainty, should you pull all recruitment?

The case for continuing to work on your recruitment through the COVID-19 crisis

The Coronavirus situation is now at a stage where no business can escape its impact. Whether you’re concerned about how you’re going to continue to provide your products and services while protecting staff and customers or whether you’re actually losing customers because of it, all businesses are facing uncertainty.

If you were, until a few days ago, actively recruiting staff, planning to recruit or just considering improving how you recruit staff, it may seem like a sensible option to put everything on hold until this crisis pans out. For some businesses, this is the best course of action but not for all.

There is a case to be made for continuing with your recruitment plans. Here’s why:

Consider long term plans, not short term issues

The current crisis may be all-consuming at the moment but it will pass and some normality will resume. You could potentially lose several months by putting recruitment plans on ice. Attracting the right people now will put you in a strong position when market demand increases again and many of your competitors will be working to catch up.

Strong job market

It is highly likely that there is a dearth of talent out there at the moment due to people having been made redundant and freelancers looking for more security in addition to those who were already looking. This could be an opportunity to snap up some really good candidates.

Increase capacity

You may find that your workforce is now somewhat depleted. Staff may be self-isolating who can’t work from home and if schools do close, many parents will have to care for children and may be unable to work. These are short term issues so we’re not suggesting you should replace these people but if you were recruiting anyway, this could give you an opportunity to increase capacity and minimise disruption.

Continuous improvement

If you have identified that you need to improve your recruitment processes and strategy then this isn’t going to change. If you were already planning to improve skills and expertise in the business then why not start putting the training and development in place now (you would still need to do it at some point) and that way, when this period passes you are ready to hit the ground running with an improved recruitment strategy and enhanced skills and ways of doing things.

Change how you recruit

With social distancing being advocated for everyone, it is inevitable that you will have to amend how you do things. There are a number of ways you can still conduct recruitment activities without face to face contact. Video conferencing can be used for interviews and online tasks for assessments. You can request video presentations and make sure your application process is easy to access online. In modern times, these are actually great practices to adopt anyway, creating a level playing field based on location and ability to attend during usual office hours. It can also be much more efficient, saving you valuable time.

This situation is very serious for our businesses and while we certainly have a great deal of fire fighting to do, we must also not lose sight of our long term business plans.

Get in touch to set up an online meeting (no meeting for coffee unfortunately!) or give us a call to discuss how you can maintain your recruitment priorities through this time of challenge.

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