4 Causes of a Bad Candidate Experience

The candidate experience is more or less defined as the candidate’s encounter with the recruiting process from beginning to end: job enquiries, proactive candidate resourcing (job boards, LinkedIn), job applications, interview preparation/feedback, pre and post placement. Research from the Talent Board found that improving candidate experience is “recruiters’ number one goal for 2019” and “80–90% of talent say a positive or negative candidate experience can change their minds about a role or company”. So what causes a bad candidate experience and how can you improve yours?

1. Not recognising where the candidate experience begins and ends

Delivering exceptional candidate experience needs to be a priority for all stages in the candidate’s journey, not just when your recruiters are engaging directly with candidates. Aspects such as your agency’s social media activity or online reviews can play a significant role in outlining expectations during the early awareness phase of the candidate experience, giving them either a positive or less than positive perception of your agency.

There is some debate about where (or if) the candidate experience ends. Kevin Grossman, President of Global Programs at The Talent Board, believes that, “Candidate experience is 24/7,” because even when a candidate is placed, agencies can still remain in communication, provided the communication is requested and useful. This will encourage further word-of-mouth recommendations.

2. Failing to properly understand your candidate’s job requirements

The pressure and urgency to fill a role can lead recruiters to rush the process of sending candidates’ CVs before full understanding one or all of:

  • The role requirements
  • The client fit and interview process
  • The candidate’s job requirements

By not fully understanding one or all of these can disrupt and be the primary cause of a bad candidate experience. The worst case scenario being the candidate feeling like a number, being pressured into a job application that they don’t want and then feeling unprepared for the interview.

To prevent this, your process needs to be watertight to get all the information you need from the client so you can fully inform a candidate about the details that are important to them enabling them to make a decision about whether the role is right for them. This way candidates will feel in control and are more likely to have a positive experience.

3. Not providing feedback in a timely manner

Regardless of the stage of the hiring process, as soon as your recruiters have been entrusted with a candidate’s application, best practice candidate experience is to provide some feedback or communication as to the outcome of that process. CareerArc report that “51% of those who receive notification say that it takes at least one month or more.”

No or slow feedback = bad candidate experience

To prevent this, you must clearly communicate the importance of feedback to your clients so that there is an expectation right from the outset. You can also manage a candidate’s expectations by letting them know an estimate as to how long they may hear from you regarding the application or interview. Being open and honest with your feedback and consistent with your communication is key to a good candidate experience.

4. Ignoring feedback given to your agency

“78% of job seekers report never having been asked for feedback on their candidate experience” Lever reports. You should have a process that encourages candidate feedback, whether it is positive or negative. Your agency will always be able to improve and your candidates are a fantastic source for analysing where your strengths and weaknesses are. Regularly review candidate feedback and you’ll be able to make necessary changes to be the best in your sector.

Improving your candidate experience should be a priority for your agency as it can be the difference between you and your competitors. Identify the weaknesses at your agencies and put in place a process of continual improvement.

Want to build an exceptional recruitment team? Download our free eBook.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

7 Lessons Recruitment Managers Can Learn From Jurgen Klopp

According to the BBC, approximately 750,000 people lined the streets of Liverpool to welcome Liverpool FC bring home the European Cup in early June 2019. While the dust has settled on this achievement, what can and should be reflected on is the management style of Jurgen Klopp; the architect of Liverpool’s victory in Madrid.

What makes him a standout manager and what can recruitment managers learn from him?

1. Clear And Defined Philosophy

Klopp’s vision was clear right from the outset. He demanded a certain level of fitness and drive from his players in order to execute the tactics of his philosophy. By making your agency’s vision clear, it provides direction, motivation and an expectation from your employees for what you want to achieve and what you expect of them.

2. Deep Knowledge Of The Game

Whether you’re a football manager or working in recruitment, you must be passionate about what you’re doing, be a “student of the game” and have an appetite to continue to learn. This not only develops your style of management, it also is a great motivator for the team around you. An environment that encourages a wider understanding of recruitment and your specialist sectors will also endear your agency to prospective candidates and clients and could even set you apart from your competitors.

3. Infectious Enthusiasm

Klopp is famous for his like-ability even amongst his fiercest competitors and sceptics. This comes down to his charm and enthusiasm, both on and off the pitch. There are always times of hardship in every job role, perhaps you’ve lost your best recruiter, but as a manager and leader, you must be able to stay positive and permeate that enthusiasm throughout your team. As they say, one bad apple ruins the bunch and you must be able to keep the “bunch” in as healthy state as possible.

4. Focus On Employee Development

Throughout his time at Liverpool FC, Klopp’s focus on developing both young and older players, to demand the very best of them when they are called upon, is undeniable. You only have to look at the likes of James Milner, Trent Alexander Arnold and Divock Origi as evidence of this.

In the same way, a recruitment manager must be able to identify talented recruiters and employees, establish what areas are their strengths, provide the right training and support to turn them into an exceptional team. Each employee will have different goals, motivation triggers and will flourish from different levels of support. It is your responsibility to assess your employees individually and manage their development effectively.

5. Fantastic Man Or People Management

Jurgen Klopp is a master of man management – the ability to get the most of each individual in his team. This comes down to knowing how the individuals in your team will respond to you as a manager. There’s a time to shout, a time to sympathise, a time to encourage and a time to demand more. Each of these are different man (or employee) management tactics that you need to have in your arsenal. It is finding the balance between these tactics and choosing the moment to deploy each tactic that will enable you to get the most out of your team.

6. Clear And Simple Brief

In an interview with Western Union, Jurgen Klopp explained that “simplicity” is one of his greatest strengths,

“I have a lot more information than I give to the players. Not because I want to keep it, but because they have to play a football game and you have to play with freedom.”

The message from Klopp here is that, as a manager, you will have much more information than your team, whether that is financial concerns, board concerns or strategic questions that you haven’t found an answer to. However, to get the most out of your team, you must cherry pick only the information that will motivate them instead of overwhelming them. Too much information and your team may feel demotivated.

7. His Hugs

Lastly, Jurgen Klopp is famous for his hugs. While it may not be appropriate to imitate Klopp in this way due to professionalism in the workplace, the sentiment remains the same. Positive encouragement and making your employees feel valued, even when perhaps they have made mistakes, is key to successful management.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

4 Best Recruitment Training Providers In The UK

Although you may have a range of experience within your recruiting team, the importance of investing in a reliable training program is paramount to ensure your recruiters are trained to give them a competitive edge and help them become all-round exceptional recruiters. By training your recruiters with essential skills they can become:

  • More efficient
  • Tech-savvy
  • Data literate
  • More innovative in their approach
  • Candidate-focused
  • More profitable

Providing training for team members is also a perk to attract top recruiters to work for your agency. But, with an abundance of recruitment training providers out there, who can you trust to improve your recruitment team? Here are four of the best recruitment training providers in the UK.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

Social Talent

Social Talent is a series of top-of-the-range online tools and digital learning programmes to help you build a team of exceptional recruiters. They emphasise quality, speed, candidate volume and knowledge expansion and allow you to track the progress of your recruiters as well as set personalised targets.

Their video-based training is available on-demand and is designed to:

  • Increase agency Net Fee income
  • Learn business development which help to win more clients
  • Train recruiters to become experts in niche areas
  • On-board new recruiters up to 3 times faster

Recruitment Juice

There are over 60 online video learning courses available with Recruitment Juice, all to be completed at your recruiters’ own pace. Delve into their archive of advice, tests, quizzes, memorable scenarios and download-and-keep documents, all geared towards supporting success and helping your recruiters learn and develop.

Their range of online training courses include:

  • The Permanent Recruitment Cycle
  • Social Media
  • Advertising
  • Sales
  • Candidate Care & Management

The also have Automated Learner Pathways that are set-up for all role types, from Rookie to Managers, enabling learners to have a sense of progression through each level. Each level has compulsory courses and activities which need to be completed in order to automatically level-up.

Enabling Change

Knowing that one size doesn’t fit all for recruiter training, Enabling Change’s recruitment training courses are built to suit you and your agency. So, what do Enabling Change offer?

  • Face-to-face open training programmes with a focus on core recruiter skills such as selling to candidates, building placements and business development.
  • Bespoke training workshops where Enabling Change trains your team face-to-face, but on skills and topics that you have specified you want improvement in.
  • Recruitment training for managers who want to train their team. Use Enabling Change’s resources to deliver your own training to your own team with material and support provided.
  • Virtual Training for Recruiters (VTR) programme using the latest eLearning technology.

The British Institute of Recruiters

There are a wide variety of accredited courses available from Study Course, part of The British Institute of Recruiters. Their recruitment agency training courses includes:

  • There are a wide variety of accredited courses available from Study Course, part of The British Institute of Recruiters. Their recruitment agency training courses includes:
  • Certificate in Principles of Recruitment Practice
  • The Complete Recruiter
  • The Complete Recruitment Leader
  • The Complete Business Developer

These online courses require just one hour of your recruiters day and can be completed at the comfort of their own desk. Courses start at multiple dates throughout the year. To pass some courses, such as The Complete Top Biller, your recruiters will need to prove they have applied their learning to real-life scenarios and examples such as actual revenue increase.

Providing your recruiters with top of the line training – whether it be face-to-face, online or self-paced – will help you build a team of exceptional recruiters.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

9 Ways Your Recruitment Culture Is Broken

The rise of workplace ‘culture’ in recent years has not gone unnoticed, to say the very least. According to Forbes, the list of benefits of a rich and thriving company culture includes increased and/or improved:

  • Innovation
  • Employee retention
  • Productivity
  • Financial performance

But, you can’t just expect a culture to happen out of nowhere: you have to build it. And to build it, you need to recognise where your agency’s culture is potentially broken. To help you reap the enviable benefits of a winning culture, here’s 9 commons ways your culture may well be broken.

1. You rule by dictatorship

It may well be your responsibility to make key strategic decisions or manage a team, but that doesn’t mean you should make every decision in isolation. By developing processes where your recruiters and senior managers have the opportunity to share their ideas, it will you allow your agency to develop and grow through collaboration.

2. You have no clear company mission, vision or values

Not having a clear agency-wide vision is a sure sign of a broken recruitment culture. Your mission, vision and values summarise your agency’s business strategy and objectives and will guide and motivate your staff to succeed and understand how their contribution aligns with your agency’s objectives and values.

Find out why your mission, vision and values are critical to building an exceptional recruitment team.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

3. You don’t offer flexible working conditions

In a survey conducted by PowWowNow, 58% of respondents believed that having flexible work conditions would help them become more motivated. Flexible working hours or the option to partly or fully work remotely are sought-after employment options for your existing staff or potential employees for your agency.

Introducing flexible working conditions (where it does not impact your agency’s operational delivery), will assist your staff in achieving a better work-life balance, whilst also delivering a high quality service to your candidates and clients..

Want to find out more about remote vs. office working for recruitment agencies? Read our blog.

4. You don’t empower your staff

You want your staff to know that they play a huge role in the success of your agency, but how can they when you don’t empower them. Employees who don’t feel empowered do not have the permission to take action and make decisions within your agency.

To start empowering your staff, consider the following steps:

  • Set and communicate clear expectations
  • Establish honest and transparent communication channels
  • Encourage personal development and on the job training
  • Inspire creative thinking
  • Provide constructive feedback

5. You encourage micromanagement

Lisa Barnes, writing on the “Damaging Effects of Micromanagementcomments that micromanagement will, “at best create a perpetual environment of dependency, inefficiency and unease, and at worst, render irreparable harm to staff morale.”

It’s easy for recruitment agency owners and managers to micromanage their staff because they:

  • Want things to be done in a specific way
  • Fear a loss of control over their business
  • Worry about their company reputation

As an owner or manager, it is essential that you give trust and autonomy to your staff because this is how exceptional employees will flourish. If you suspect a manager relies heavily on micromanagement, offer them training on more productive tactics they can use to get the results they want.

6. You have one rule for some and another rule for others

It’s important to inspire fairness throughout your recruitment agency. Giving some staff special privileges or treatment over others is detrimental for the team atmosphere and morale.

No one wants to be the victim of favouritism or see it at play in their company. If there are changes to your processes or you identify areas in your business that may engender disparity, communicate this to your recruitment staff and ask for the best way to resolve it from multiple parties. By hearing a variety of opinions, you’ll be able to come up with a process that is fair for everyone.

7. You rarely organise office events

Team building events (in or out of the office) is not a new concept but it is still an effective tactic for boosting staff morale and improving productivity. Collectively your staff can accomplish more by working together than any single worker will ever be able to do.

Building work relationships is also important to your staff well-being. For some employees work can be a very lonely place so it’s important for employers to understand just how important building social connections are in the workplace.

8. You don’t deal with conflict effectively

Conflict is natural in competitive environments. After all, you and especially your recruiters are all striving to hit targets in an often high-pressured environment. But when conflict does occur, it is best to have a process to deal with it professionally and definitively. Instead of letting conflicts bubble under the surface, address it in real time and allow both parties to discuss and come to an agreement or resolve the conflict

9. You rarely provide feedback

A report by Officevibe proves just how valuable feedback is to your employees – even when it’s negative! 4 out of 10 workers are actively disengaged when they get little or no feedback and 92% revealed that they think negative feedback is actually effective at improving performance.

Cultivating a truly positive company culture will be rewarding not just for your employees, but for your recruitment agency as a whole. It’ll help you attract and retain exceptional staff and positively contribute to the success of your agency.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

What Is Emotional Intelligence In Recruitment?

It can be a real challenge to evaluate candidates based solely on their skills and experience. This is why many businesses are beginning to introduce tests and processes to assess candidates’ emotional intelligence, particularly in roles where communication, collaboration and empathy are key to success.

This blog will examine what emotional intelligence is for recruiters and how testing for emotional intelligence can help you recruit more effectively.

What is emotional intelligence?

Emotional intelligence refers to the ability to perceive, control and evaluate emotions. This impacts on how well you communicate, empathise, lead, negotiate, and build relationships.

Why emotional intelligence is important in modern recruitment

In a 2016 survey by the World Economic forum, emotional intelligence was considered by leading global employers to be one of the most important skills that workers will need in 2020. Alongside creativity, critical thinking and cognitive flexibility, this is a skillset that recruiters must now be attuned to when assessing candidates for your clients.

Recruitment has traditionally focused on assessing qualifications, experience and skills. Although these are, and always will be, critical components for assessing candidates, emotional intelligence can also be a useful barometer for specific roles that require soft skills. By assessing the emotional intelligence of candidates, you will be better equipped to find the right role and company fit that CVs and documents cannot provide alone.

How understanding emotional intelligence can help you identify better candidates

Understanding emotional intelligence can help you identify traits and characteristics that will help you understand how candidates respond to work situations such as:

  • High pressure environments.
  • Working with different team members and groups.
  • Working with different levels of seniority.
  • Customer interfacing, especially in a customer service, complaints or account management.
  • Different working environments e.g working unsupervised or remotely.

These gauges also give a good idea about their attitude, styling of learning and/or coaching/management and whether they share the values of the role or culture fit

Assessing this can potentially also offer insights into the level of commitment the candidate might have to the role i.e. how long they are likely to stay.

7 ways to evaluate emotional intelligence in a candidate

It’s clear that assessing emotional intelligence can provide valuable insights for recruiters. So, how do you identify emotional intelligence in a candidate?

  1. Pay attention to the language that they use when describing emotions. The more specific they are, the more likely they are to exhibit emotionally intelligent behaviours.
  2. Observe their language, both verbal and physical, to see if they are adaptable and open to change.
  3. Notice their levels of self-awareness. Are they honest about their strengths and weaknesses? Did they describe situations where they have been open to self-improvement? Have they shown evidence of incorporating feedback into their work; positive or negative? Alarm bells should be ringing if they revert to cliched language to describe these aspects of themselves.
  4. Note whether they display empathetic behaviours and/or show interest about other employees’ roles and how they will fit into the team.
  5. Pay attention to whether they tend to take offence easily or appear to hold grudges.
  6. Consider asking a question based on how the candidate dealt with a frustrating situation at work and how they chose to deal with it. If they explain the situation clearly and objectively, show self-awareness, were open to taking responsibility for their role in the conflict and demonstrated a keenness to understand others’ reactions you’re on to a winner.
  7. Observe their reactions when asked to explain and re-explain a situation. An emotionally intelligent candidate will remain unflustered and adapt their explanation to one they think will suit your needs.

Incorporating emotional intelligence testing into your candidate selection process can provide genuinely useful information about how a candidate will fit into a particular business, and how likely they will be to succeed in the role, long term.

For a more detailed look at everything you need to know about building an exceptional recruitment team, download the guide today!

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

Remote Working vs Office: Pros and Cons for Recruiters

In 2018, the Financial Times reported 43% of all UK employees have flexible working conditions with 89% of British workers believing that flexible working conditions would boost their productivity; it’s clear there’s an undeniable appetite for remote working and a place for it in the recruitment industry. But is it right for your agency?

If you’re considering whether remote working would be beneficial to your recruitment agency, we’ve investigated the pros and cons to help you decide whether you want to provide flexible working conditions for your recruiters.

What is remote working?

Remote working allows recruiters the freedom to work outside the confinements of the office environment. This could be working from home, a co-working space, on-the-go or at a cafe. Remote working is part of a wider concept called flexible working.

The root of flexible working relies on the trust that your recruiters will agree to work their contracted hours in a way that is most productive for them. This could be a traditional 9am-5pm in the office or, alternatively, working remotely for part, or all, of the working week.

Other examples of flexible working include compressed hours, start and finish times that are school-run-friendly or a ‘flexitime’ model which lets your recruiters choose when their workdays start and finish based on client and candidate requirements.

But working in the office is still the norm for the vast majority of recruitment agencies. So what are the pros and cons of working in an office environment?

Working in the office

According to a Microsoft-sponsored survey, “73% of companies today rely solely on in-house employees” – but this is slowly changing. Marissa Meyer, chief of Yahoo, says, “People are more productive when they’re alone, but they’re more collaborative and innovative when they’re together”, providing food for thought on the debate around working in the office vs. remote working.


  • It’s much easier to continuously develop a positive workplace culture aligned with your mission, vision and values when everyone is working in the same offices.
  • It allows your recruiters to work collaboratively, which can boost overall performance and teamwork.
  • New recruiters can shadow experienced recruiters, improving the onboarding and training process.
  • In the office, it’s often easier to manage your recruiters’ time, keep them motivated and offer support when required.
  • In the office they can learn by listening to their colleagues, observing best practice and improving performance and skills by osmosis.
  • It’s easier to witness and celebrate the achievements of your recruiters. Seeing success in person, rather than over the phone or reading data analytics, is much more powerful.


  • An open office is often a loud and distracting environment which can negatively affect recruiter productivity.
  • The cost of renting office space is one of the largest ongoing costs for any recruitment agency, especially ensuring there is desk space for a growing workforce.
  • There’s a higher likelihood of injury: the Center for Disease Control (CDC) found that office workers are 2 – 2.5 times more likely than non-office workers to suffer injury from a fall.
  • 45% of UK workers spend over an hour a day commuting. As well as the time commitment, there is also a considerable cost whether that is towards petrol or public transport.

Remote working

Powwownow reported that 67% of employees want the flexibility of working at home. So, what are the advantages and disadvantages of remote working for recruitment agencies?


  • Working at home can inspire your recruiters to think more laterally, giving them time to recruit smarter as they’re removed from a distracting office environment.
  • If you want to attract the next generation of recruiters, offering the option of remote working is considered a real perk as part of a benefits package,
  • When geography is not a barrier, you can source your recruiters in different parts of the country, widening the pool to find exceptional recruiters.
  • The ability to reduce your office space by decreasing the number of full time desks required, which will assist in reducing your ongoing rental cost
  • In a study conducted by HR association CIPD, 3 out of 4 workers reported that flexible working has a positive effect on their wellbeing. Therefore, recruiters can feel less stressed when working from home as there’s a much greater opportunity for work-life balance.


  • Recruiter isolation – working alone for lengthy periods can lead to isolation, which can be highly demotivating.
  • Remote working lacks direct personal contact. This may lead remote recruiters to work without the support they need.
  • With no direct supervision, there’s a risk for recruiters to take advantage and slack off.
  • If your recruiters don’t separate their work and home lives, they may end up working all around the clock and suffer considerable burnout.
  • Having the IT infrastructure in place to support recruiter to work remotely.

The key is finding the right balance that makes commercial sense for your agency and allows your recruiters to work as productively as possible and achieve a work life balance. Building a successful culture is just one aspect of creating an exceptional recruitment team.

Download our free guide and learn how to improve your recruitment team today.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

Leadership vs Management: What is best for Recruitment Managers?

“Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.”

Peter Drucker

The topic of leadership vs management exploded in the 1980s and is still a relevant question for recruitment agencies today. But what makes leadership and management different from one another? How do the two interact with each other? And can one person be both a leader and a manager?

Before we discuss whether you can be both an effective leader and manager, here’s a brief definition of the two:

What is the definition of leadership?

Leadership tends to be focused on future possibilities by creatively thinking about the mission of the business, what can change, how they can inspire their workforce and what the unified organisation’s purpose is. Leaders are mission-orientated – concerned with group direction and inspiring trust in team members.

The key responsibilities of a leader are to:

  • Create the mission, vision and values of your agency, defining the raison d’etre
  • Define and evolve the overall strategy
  • Consult and refine operational processes
  • Inspire enthusiasm
  • Anticipate trends and fluctuations in the market and advise on the strategy to take advantage of opportunities

What is the definition of management?

Management is more concerned with achieving targets and completing goals following a task-based, organisational approach.

The key responsibilities of a manager are to:

  • Accomplish the visions of the senior leadership team by taking their strategy and transforming it into a logical roadmap to guide the team
  • Direct the friction-less running of the day-to-day operations
  • Be the go-to for issues and problems that need to be escalated
  • Provide training and support to your recruiters

Can the two roles be blended?

By now, you should have a clear understanding of what a manager and a leader are and how the two roles differ. You should be able to recognise which definition you mostly fall into. But can the two roles be blended? Well, this may depend on the size of your recruitment agency:

Start-up or small recruitment agency (1-10 employees)
In some cases, particularly at smaller recruitment agencies, being both a leader and manager is a necessity. You must adopt the qualities of a leader while being flexible enough to get stuck in with day-to-day management of day-to-day processes.

Medium-sized recruitment agency (10 – 50 employees)
Once your agency grows in size – at approximately the 10-15 person mark – it starts to become impossible for one person to be both the leader and the manager. This is often where the owner will devote more of their efforts towards the responsibilities of a leader; namely the mission, vision and values of the agency. The role of manager may well be taken up internally or the agency may wish to recruit a manager.

Large recruitment agency (50 employees+)
In larger agencies, this separation will already be established, with core leadership teams who work together to evolve the strategy of the agency and perhaps, branch and office managers who direct the processes.

To attain consistency nationally and internationally, it is key to the success of large agencies for the strategy and tactics to be clear, documented and accessible. This will allow a unified culture to develop even in different countries and languages.

If you feel there’s a need for more leadership or management at your agency, think about the appropriate level of balance in these roles. Alternatively, if you think your management style needs to adopt some leadership impetus, evaluate the qualities of leadership, identifying what you already do and what your business requires in order to thrive.

Want to build an agency that breeds success? Download our guide for building an exceptional recruitment team.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

Recruit the Recruiter: 10 Tips For Hiring Exceptional Recruiters

Industry influencer Greg Savage believes that a huge challenge for recruitment agency owners and managers is finding and retaining top recruiters. And he’s right!

These are a just a 3 reasons why it remains such a difficult challenge:

  • The role of a recruiter requires a varied skill set: the job is about more than just selling
  • There’s no dedicated qualifications – an exceptional recruiter can come from a varied employment background. so screening CVs is not a simple checklist exercise
  • Recruitment is a competitive market to say the least. There are now almost 40,000 agencies in the UK, all in demand of top talent

To make your hiring process more robust, here are 10 tips to help you recruit exceptional recruiters:

1. Take your time to re-evaluate your hiring requirements

According to REC, a poor hire (with a salary of £42,000) can cost a business more than £132,000. Given these costly ramifications, the need for a considered approach cannot be underestimated.

It is an ideal time to re-evaluate the requirements for the role in order to attract the kind of candidates with the right recruitment DNA for your agency. Has the success criteria changed since you last hired? How have the market demands changed?

Look at the experience, skills and abilities of a modern recruiter and what’s invaluable to your agency? Are they fluent in data? Do they have a marketing mindset? Are they a tech innovator?

2. How do your KPI/commission/company incentives compare?

There’s no denying that, in recruitment, salaries must be competitive and your commission scheme must drive your recruiters to hit their targets . But have you considered other benefits and rewards schemes which can set your agency apart from your competitors?

A rewards scheme could include:

  • Give a percentage of the team profit to a team-selected charity
  • Award extra holiday time for exceeding targets
  • Offer gym memberships and personal trainers to inspire motivation

3. Leverage your network

Ask the opinion of trusted peers, partners and connections in your network for recommendations of prospective candidates. The candidates they suggest could be much more suitable than a traditional candidate search.

You can also ask your LinkedIn connections to repost your advertised job ad within their network to widen your reach and act as a trust indicator.

4. Poaching from your competitors

This is a sensitive topic, but there’s no denying that poaching top talent from your competitors happens within recruitment and other industries – here are some pros and cons:

  • Acquiring top performing recruiters with specific industry knowledge
  • Gaining a recruiter who needs little-to-no training
  • Hiring from a competitor may well be quicker than entering the oft-lengthy, traditional hiring process


Download our guide for more insider know-how about building an exceptional recruitment team.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

5. Attend recruitment networking events

Do not underestimate the value of attending high profile recruitment events. Networking will increase the visibility of your agency and can promote it as a great place to work. It won’t necessarily be an opportunity to proactively recruit candidates on the day: it’s more about showcasing brand awareness and gives you the chance to connect with top recruiters on a personal level.

6. Monitor industry-related social media groups

There a plenty of social media groups such as Headhunter & Executive Recruiter Community and Recruiters Online where you can find members to connect with. Follow posts and comments closely and identify whether there are suitable candidates you can begin to approach.

7. Be creative with your interview process

Recruiters know how to conduct an interview successfully – or, at least, the exceptional ones should – so there’s potential here to have a bit of fun while assessing the candidate’s skills: For example, you can role play real life work situations such as:

8. Be transparent

During the interview be transparent about your expectation,targets, KPIs, your agency’s working culture and key deliverables for the role. This will provide a candidate with a clear expectation of what is expected before taking the role, so there are no surprises once they start. Being candid and honest from the outset will attract open and honest recruiters who’ll be more likely to stay with you long term.

9. Make your hiring process efficient

Ensure your interviewers will be available during the interview period – the last thing you need is for interviewers to be on holiday or travelling out of the office. Make your internal approval and on-boarding process efficient so you are able to make an offer and on-board your exceptional recruiter straightaway,

10. Conduct a reference check

Use a reference check as serious component of the hiring process, not as part of the post-hiring administration. Don’t just be wowed by a company they’ve associated with: impressive testimonies from people they’ve actually worked with will be able to verify their experience, their work ethic and give you a better idea of how they’ll fit into your agency.

For a more detailed look into everything you need to know about building an exceptional recruitment team, download the guide today!
How to build an exceptional recruitment team

A Recruiter’s Guide To Delivering Constructive Feedback To Candidates

According to LinkedIn, 94% of candidates want to receive feedback after an interview. But, giving feedback isn’t easy, especially when you weren’t even at the interview!

As a recruiter, providing constructive feedback is how you can earn the respect and loyalty of high quality candidates and elevate your reputation above your competitors. In this blog, we outline how you can obtain better quality interview feedback from your clients and 6 tips for delivering feedback to your candidates.

How To Obtain Interview Feedback From Your Clients?

Before you can give constructive feedback to your candidates, it is essential to obtain it from your clients and, as you well know, this is not always forthcoming. However, there are some proven tactics to implement into your processes to obtain more valuable feedback:

Organise an interview debrief call

By organising a date and time to discuss your candidate’s interview over the phone, you already setting the precedent with your clients that you expect constructive feedback and, therefore, are more likely to receive it. In addition, by setting their expectations from the outset and being proactive, it displays an authentic professionalism that will put you ahead of most of your competitors.

Prepare well

To maximise the use of your client’s time AND get the information you need to feedback to your candidate, prepare some questions to get to the heart of why they weren’t successful.

You can begin by thinking about what feedback you, yourself, would like to receive as a candidate. Then you can begin to construct a list of questions that will prompt specific and more detailed answers from your client.

Struggling to think of poignant questions? Here’s a simple structure that you can use:


  • On the whole, what was the client’s overall impression of your candidate?
  • How did your candidate present themselves?
  • Did they answer the questions fully and in the manner your client expected?

Culture fit

  • Were they the right cultural fit for the office and the role?
  • Did their personality shine through or were they strictly professional?


  • Were they able to demonstrate their skill set sufficiently?
  • What skills did the candidate not demonstrate enough of?


  • What were the candidate’s strengths?
  • What could the candidate improve on?

By asking open questions, you should be able to take enough notes to give transparent and constructive feedback to your candidate that will help them improve whilst at the same time improving your recruiter-candidate relationship. In addition to this, you will also begin to learn the key components that your clients look for in a candidate and how their interview process is structured. This valuable insight will be goldust for preparing candidates for future interviews.

6 Tips For Delivering Constructive Feedback

1. Always deliver feedback over the phone

No one likes delivering negative news and it is a difficult part of the recruitment profession. However, by communicating feedback in a personal manner, as a rule, you will gain another level of trust and respect which improves the candidate experience.

It will also enable you to better gauge your candidate’s reaction so there’ll be no ambiguity or misunderstanding.

2. Start with the positives

There are many ways to deliver constructive feedback but the “praise sandwich” is a well trodden path. Sandwiching the negative feedback in between two positive bits of feedback will usually make a candidate more receptive to the important part; where they need to improve.

If all you deliver is negative feedback, your candidate is more likely to:
Switch off and not learn from their mistakes
Remember that you were the “messenger” that brought the bad news

3. Be specific about their strengths and weaknesses

As well as being sensitive to your candidate’s career, you also have to be honest and specific. Lofty feedback such as “you just weren’t quite what they were looking for” isn’t going to help anyone.

Whereas, by pinpointing that their strengths such as, “you have sufficient skills for the role but the client felt you didn’t demonstrate enough client facing experience.”

By being specific, it gives your candidate practical advice ago where they may need to improve
N.B. By using qualifying phrases such as demonstrate, display or offer, you can soften the negative feedback.

4. Be transparent

No matter how difficult it is to give feedback to a candidate who has been unsuccessful, every candidate deserves transparency. Unfortunately, this is still a rare commodity in large swathes of the recruitment process and, because of this, it will be even more greatly appreciated.

5. Make recommendations where possible

Having witnessed more successful and unsuccessful interviews than the majority of your clients and candidates put together, you are in an exclusive position to give valuable recommendations about interview technique. By offering this insight, you will gain trust and build your reputation as a valued asset.

6. Use your experience

Although these tips will improve your process of giving constructive feedback, every situation will differ and you must use your experience to read the candidate and how they like to receive feedback. Your job relies primarily on making successful placements and building a strong reputation as a valuable recruiter and this should remain your priority.

Learn more secrets of becoming a successful recruitment agency by downloading your free guide.

7 secrets of successful recruitment agencies free ebook download

6 Top Recruitment Blogs You Should Follow

The recruitment industry is forever evolving and one of the most effective ways to keep on top of what’s trending and new is by following dedicated recruitment industry blogs. These blogs are written by industry experts, enabling you to gain insights within the industry and capitalise on any recruitment trends, advise and technologies as they emerge.

We have scoured the internet for the best recruitment blogs that deliver high quality advice and top insights so you can be informed and share within your agency and on your social media channels.

LinkedIn Talent Blog

The LinkedIn Talent Blog, is a hotbed of remarkable recruitment strategies, tips, and trends, written by a mix of industry leaders, recruiters and business experts. Amongst the biggest movers in the recruitment industry, LinkedIn’s blog is always a reliable source for anyone looking for an interesting read.

Social Talent

Social Talent are global leaders in recruitment training, so it is no surprise that their blog is an enviable resource for recruiters. They publish at least 1 blog a day and if you want to be entertained whilst being informed, this blog is definitely for you.

Undercover Recruiter

Undercover Recruiter is a dedicated news sight (one of two in this list) specifically for recruitment and it has been a bastion of reliable news for many years. With a combination of recruitment, employment and candidate focused blogs, they rarely miss a trick.

Social Hire

Social Hire are a social media agency who specialise in growing revenue for recruitment agencies by using social media. Needless to say, their knowledge on social recruitment and marketing for recruitment agencies is second to none. The vast majority of blogs are written by Tony Restell (@tonyrestell) who is well worth following.

Recruiting Blogs

Recruiting Blogs are a constant source of current news and trends. They have a variety of writers who provide expert industry advice on all issues relating to the recruitment sector. As well as recruitment blogs, they also recommend webinars and conferences to attend.

Eclipse Software

Here at Eclipse Software we are focus on providing the best advice and insights for recruitment agencies whether it is recruitment software related; how to maximise inbound marketing and social media or advancements in technology  for the ever evolving recruitment industry. A few of our most popular blogs include:

ATS vs CRM: Which Recruitment Software Is Right For You?
7 Key Recruitment Metrics For Recruitment Agencies

What Is Boolean Search In Recruitment?
9 Essential Skills Of A Modern Recruitment Consultant
Chatbots In Recruitment: Pros & Cons

7 Counter Offer Statistics Every Recruiter Needs To Know

Our blog was recently voted the 9th best UK recruitment blog for 2018, according to Feedspot. Have a read and let us know what you think.

How can you easily follow your favourite blogs?


“Organize, read and share what matters to you.”

Feedly is a content aggregator which you can personalise to keep track of all of your favourite blogs in one place. Feedly will save you time whether you’re trying to find something to read on your lunch break or you’re looking for some interesting articles to share within your agency or on social media.


Keeping on top of industry news and insights will allow your recruitment agency to stay ahead of your competitors, stay relevant to your candidates and give you the most informed view to make the best strategic decision on an ever-changing market.

Are your blogs or social media posts attracting traffic to your website? Maybe you should try inbound marketing for your agency and let candidates and clients come to you.

The Ultimate Guide To Inbound Marketing For Recruitment Agencies

13 Creative Ways To Reward Your Recruitment Agency Employees

Introducing a rewards program into your recruitment agency is a powerful tool to increase employee engagement and company culture; and retain top talent. As you know, working within the recruitment industry is highly results-focused, demanding and consistently evolving to meet market demands. As a result, your employees can feel under appreciated for going the extra mile or exceeding their sales or KPI targets.

“82% of employees do NOT think they are recognised for their work as often as they deserve.”


As a business leader, the challenge remains; how can you introduce a creative and personalised employee incentive program to reward top performing employees across all divisions of your recruitment agency? Well, we have done the research for you by providing a list of 13 creative rewards and incentive ideas to cover all budgets and individual tastes.

1. Netflix Subscription

Allow your employees to disconnect from the office for some healthy binging of their favourite movies or box sets with a yearly Netflix subscription. A simple reward that’s always guaranteed to be well received.

2. Uber Credit

Give an employees a safe and comfortable trip home whenever they need it; if that is straight from the office or after a night out. Who wouldn’t want monthly Uber credit?

3. Giving To A Charity Of Their Choice

For an employee that is passionate about a charity they support, why not offer a to offer to pay a nominated amount directly to the charity or reward them with a few days out of the office per year.

4. Sporting Event Tickets

For employees that are passionate about their sports, rewarding them with tickets to a local or national sporting event or season tickets of their choice.

5. Amazon Prime Subscription

For an employee who loves to shop online and streaming box sets and movies, they will love a yearly Amazon Prime subscription for next day delivery and Amazon Prime TV.

6. Dinners For A Month

After a hectic day in the office, often the last thing a employee wants to do is go to the super market and then prepare and cook dinner. Give employees (and their partners) their evenings back, with having delicious prepared dinners delivered straight to their home for a month.

7. A Paid Holiday

Offering employees a contribution towards their holiday once a year is a great way to show that you value their time off. This may include paying for their Airbnb or hotel or by giving them airline vouchers to prompt a much-deserved getaway.

8. Do Their Dry Cleaning

Take care of one of those tedious chores that employees have to do outside of office hours. Have them bring their dry cleaning into the office and pay for the pick up and drop off dry-cleaning service for a month, 6 months or a year.

9. Gym Membership OR Personal Trainer

Staying active can be difficult to balance with a demanding career but it is important for your employees’ well being. Offer a gym membership for a year or a personal trainer for 3 months to encourage them to keep fit and give them the motivation they need.

10. Personalised Coffee Cup

For the employees who love coffee, designing a personalised coffee cup will put a smile on their face every morning. It is also great for the environment, too!

11. A Day Off Work Pass

No matter how hard-working your employees are, there will come a time when they just need a day off. Give them the freedom to have 2 short notice days off per year to just relax and get away from the stresses of the office.

12. Cooking Lessons

For a lot of people, cooking is a chore and having a busy life makes food inspiration hard to come by. Offer a basic or intermediate set of cooking lessons to give your employees the skills and ideas to make healthy food at home.

13. A Car Wash For A Year

Let’s face it – no one likes washing and polishing their car. It’s a chore that we all have to do and often leave it a bit too long. By covering the cost of a local car wash service for their car to be washed and polished for a year means it is one less chore they need to think about on the weekends.


By introducing an employee rewards program that has a range of creative and personalised incentive items at difference price points will ensure all your employees have the opportunity to be rewarded for going the extra mile or exceeding their KPI’s or targets.


Want to know how to build an exceptional team of recruiters? Download your free guide today.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

Online Reviews: A Guide For Recruitment Agencies

Online reviews or testimonials can be seen as somewhat of a double-edged sword. Positive reviews are a powerful tool, but the real power is in the reviewer. A candidate or client willing to spend time reviewing your recruitment agency’s service can turn into a brand ambassador for your agency. On the other hand, negative reviews can sometimes damage your reputation and discourage potential candidates and clients from using your service.

“85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.”
Bright Local

In this blog we will outline the benefits of requesting online reviews or testimonials for your recruitment agency, and how to deal with any negative reviews in the most effective way.

Where can online reviews be published?

  • Your agency’s website (create a dedicated testimonials page)
  • Google (any online reviews are presented with search results)
  • Your agency’s social media platforms

Benefits of online reviews

  • People trust people. 85% of people trust online reviews as much as they would a personal recommendation – it’s a chance to read real people’s unbiased opinion about the experience that they had with your agency.
  • Transparency. Having online reviews – whether they are good or bad – shows potential clients or candidates that you are transparent and trustworthy, particularly if reviews have been responded to.
  • Effective for local SEO. In short, the more positive Google reviews you have, the more likely your agency is to appear at the top of Google for relevant local search queries. To learn why local SEO is essential for recruitment agencies, have a read of our blog.
  • Turn the negative into a positive. If you do receive a negative review for whatever reason, you can use it as an opportunity to learn and improve your candidate or client experience.

How to obtain online reviews

  • Ask candidates to review your agency immediately after they have been placed in a role. By seizing the moment, candidates are much more likely to take the time to write a review.
  • Once you have completed the recruitment for a client, ask them to spend a few minutes to write a review about the experience they had with your recruitment agency.
  • If a candidate or client is thanking you for your help, it can be the perfect opportunity to ask for some help in return by requesting a review or testimonial.
  • Ensure that it is as easy as possible for candidates and clients to leave reviews. For Google reviews, ensure that any correspondence you have with them includes clear guidance on how to do this.
  • Provide options for where people can write a review or testimonial. It could be an online survey so you can publish it on your agency’s website, links to your social media platforms or links for Google reviews.

How to deal with negative reviews

  • Respond promptly. Negative reviews are never easy to read, but responding right away in a professional manner can help turn that bad review around.
  • Acknowledge the problem. Shirking responsibility when something has gone wrong, regardless of how big or small, will only cause the candidate or client to become more unhappy with the situation. By understanding the issue with as much empathy and efficiency as possible, you’ll be more able to resolve the problem.
  • Reply online. Reply promptly to the negative review or comment online for all to see. By doing so, it shows that you take these comments seriously. Some candidates or clients will even correct a bad review after a successful resolution, so addressing issues quickly can help turn things around.

All in all, promoting online reviews or publishing testimonials on your agency’s website is advantageous as it shows potential candidates and clients that you are proactive with seeking feedback and focused on resolving problems in an efficient manner. In addition, potential new customers will trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations as it builds confidence and trust in the service you deliver.

Are you interested in learning from other recruitment professionals how they manage and grow their successful agency? Download our free eBook today.

7 secrets of successful recruitment agencies free ebook download

7 Key Recruitment Metrics For Recruitment Agencies

With the access of “big data”, your recruitment agency and recruiters have tools available to them like recruitment software and BI platforms to use data to analyse, track and measure operational and financial performance. But when it comes to operational performance, what recruitment metrics or key performance indicators can be identified and measured to gather insights of your recruitment agency and recruiting staff performance?

Below is a list of 7 key recruitment metrics that can assist you to analyse and measure operational performance across your recruitment agency.

1. Placements To Goal

Placements to goal equates to the number of placements required to meet a predetermined goal within a defined period of time. Placement to goal gives your recruitment team a clear indicator of how many placements they need make before reaching their monthly, quarterly or annual target.

2. Time To Fill

Time to fill can be measured in two ways with the most common being the number of days between a vacancy being received and a candidate accepting an offer. The additional measure is the number of days between the date a candidate accepted the offer to the candidate’s start date. Both are beneficial to measure the average time to fill a vacancy and then the average time from offer to start date to measure efficiencies and revenue forecasting.

3. Application To Interview To Placement

This metric is useful to measure how effective your overall recruitment process has been for a particular role or on average for your agency. You can measure the number of applicants (from either external advertising or candidates registered in your recruitment CRM), consultant interviews, CVs forwarded for a role, to client interview, to offer, to placement. This metric will provide oversight on the effectiveness at key stages of the recruitment process and highlight any areas of slippage.

4. Sourcing Channel Effectiveness

Sourcing channel effectiveness can be measured in two ways; quantity or quality. The quantity measure is the number of candidates generated from each sourcing channel during a given timeframe. The quality measure is the number of candidates generated from each sourcing channel and then successfully placed in a role. This data will assist with creating a clear picture of which sourcing channels are beneficial for volume candidate attraction and which are most effective in generating revenue.

5. Margin/Placement Fee

A temporary margin or a permanent placement fee are revenue streams for all recruitment agencies. By measuring and tracking your average temporary margin or placement fee for growth or erosion you can clearly see how your recruitment agency performing. This metric is also very useful to assist for revenue projections, measure overall discounting and market conditions.

6. Client Retention

A simple metric to measure, client retention refers to the number of clients where vacancies were received compared to the same period the year before. Fundamentally, this will compare how many clients you have gained, retained or lost in a 6 or 12 month period.

7. Candidate Satisfaction

Candidate satisfaction is an crucial metric to measure objective feedback from candidates regarding their overall experience with engaging with your agency/recruitment consultants. An online survey is an excellent tool for capturing candidate feedback through key stages of the recruitment to placement process. These insights can inform you where your particular strengths are and in what areas you need to improve.

Is your agency data driven? Find out how data can help build an exceptional recruitment team by downloading our free guide.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

The Generation Game: Attracting X, Y & Z Candidates

As a recruiter, across your career, you will inevitably recruit for a multitude of varied roles that will attract a diverse range of candidates. But how often do you write your job ads based on the differing generation traits of your intended audience?

Although generations are, for all intents and purposes, fictional representations of specific age groups, they can be very helpful for this very purpose. Generations are based on “people within a delineated population who experience the same significant events within a given period of time”.

This means that they will often share similar personality traits, motivations, communication and work preferences. By using these generation guidelines, you can tailor your jobs ads and content strategies to appeal to the right candidates, advertise in the most lucrative places and receive more, higher quality applications. So what are these generational similarities?

Generation X (1965 -1979)

Personality: Talented, adventurous, innovative and resilient
Motivations: Independence, responsibility, stability.
Rewards: Freedom and real life fun.
Communication Preference: Direct – tailored email, telephone, networking
Career Path: Loyal, stable.

The often overlooked “middle child” generation are now reaching their early 40s to mid 50s. Research suggests that Generation X candidates are more productive and easily trainable compared to the earlier Baby Boomer generation. They are tech literate and use it in their work life but do not need it to exist like their younger Generation Y (Millennial) and Generation Z colleagues.

They usually seek a work/life balance and although they are highly motivated as a workforce, they need to be financially compensated because they have significant outgoings such as a mortgage and children.

This generation began their job search by looking through newspapers and job directories but they are now well versed with online job sites and LinkedIn. However, the higher quality candidates of this generation expect to hear about an opportunity either through their current contacts or to be contacted in person due to their level of experience. This highlights the importance of a well crafted introductory email or building relationships with Gen X candidates in person at related events.

Want to know the benefits of building a passive candidate pipeline? Read our blog.

Generation Y (1980 – 1994)

Personality: Tenacious, multi-tasking, creative and transparent.
Motivations: Making a difference, career growth, collaboration.
Rewards: Recognition, work/life balance, training and experience over salary.
Communication Preference: Email and social media.
Career Path: Always looking for the next challenge.

The well documented rise of the Generation Y, or millennial workforce, has dominated blog streams over the last 5 years as it has been forecasted that they will become the largest working generation by 2019, eclipsing Baby Boomers (1945-1965). These digital pioneers are significantly different to their Gen X colleagues because of the exponential growth technology has experienced in the past 15 years. They are currently at the forefront, testing and creating new technology and pushing the horizons.

They are smart, want to make a difference with their career and short term focused. They aren’t afraid to jump ship if they don’t see a future in their current role. In fact, they view moving on every 3-5 years as “the way” to progress quickly. The want their ideas to be recognised and to be a part of the strategic decisions, even if they aren’t responsible for making the final call.

They use social media on a daily basis because it has become where they consume their news – through Facebook and Twitter streams. Designing standout adverts or writing engaging content that will get shared on these channels is a sure-fire to get in front of Generation Y.

Generation Z (1995 – 2012)

Personality: Multi-talented, entrepreneurial, realistic, sceptical.
Motivations: Salary, creative license, progressive culture.
Rewards: Flexibility, material gain over experience.
Communication Preference: Mobile centric, video, social media.
Career Path: Job hopping in search of perfection.

The youngest and least researched generation is Generation Z or iGen, who are slowly infiltrating the global workforce, the oldest having just turned 23. Compared to their millennial colleagues, they are digital natives and barely remember a time where they didn’t have a mobile phone in their hand, connecting with their friends on a variety of social media channels.

They are data literate, analytical and less idealistic than Generation Y candidates. This may be because their parents experienced a damaging recession at the peak of their working years and they are cautious not to be left financially vulnerable. This means that they are motivated by salary but also expect a progressive working culture where they can express their creativity.

With a shorter attention span than older generations, their social life is dominated by virtual relationships; sharing videos, images and memes. Because of this, their standards of creativity are high. To attract Generation Z candidates, you must command their attention immediately with innovative ideas that are visually compelling, such as video jobs ads.

Learn how 5 leading companies are using video marketing for their candidate attraction strategy in our blog.

Understanding the target audience for the roles you’re recruiting for is an important step in deciding how to attract the desired candidates you’re searching for. By having clear picture of what motivates them and on what channels they are most active, you can devote your time to creating ads and content that will have a significant impact in candidate attraction.

74% of recruitment agencies identified finding talent as the top challenge for their recruiters in 2018. To find out more industry insights as predicted by recruitment professionals, download our free guide.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

How To Build A Passive Candidate Pipeline

In our recent eBook – The 2018 Recruitment And Technology Trends – UK and Ireland – we found that 74.6% of recruitment agencies have identified “finding talent” as the top challenge for 2018.  Among the primary reasons why finding talent remains such a challenge is, of course, the skills shortage combined with a record low unemployment rate in the UK. For recruiters, this translates to the majority of quality candidates already being employed. In fact, these “passive candidates” make up the vast majority of the market, globally 75% of the workforce.

What Is The Difference Between An Active And Passive Candidate?

By definition, an active candidate is “actively” looking for a job whereas a passive candidate is not. Usually, a passive candidate already has employment but could be open to hearing about the right opportunity. LinkedIn’s U.S. & Canada Talent Trends report advises; “90 percent of professionals are interested in hearing about new job opportunities.”

What Are The Pros And Cons Of Building A Passive Candidate Pipeline?


The nature of a passive candidate means that they are unlikely to be regularly interviewing for a number of roles because, realistically, they will only be looking to move for that next ideal opportunity. This means that when you do have a role that they are interested in, they are more likely to be exclusively your candidate.

Quality Over Quantity
When building your passive candidate pipeline, you can focus on building relationships with high quality candidates that you know have the motivation, skills, experience and cultural fit that your clients will be looking for in their current or future workforce requirements.

Undercover Recruiter reported that passive candidates are 120% more likely to want to make an impact at a new business than active candidates. As a recruitment agency, your reputation is built on the quality of the candidates you provide to your clients so the more reliable they are, the better your agency appears.

Honesty and transparency from a candidate is critical for any successful placement. Due to the job security that passive candidates can fall back on, they tend to be more open and honest in both what they are looking for and what they will accept if offered. Active candidates may be willing to accept a role even if they do not intend to stay there, simply because they may need employment.


Important Vs Urgent
Time management and prioritisation are two key skills of a successful recruiter, as you are consistently spending your day balancing important versus urgent candidate and client requirements. Building a passive candidate pipeline takes time and you don’t often see any immediate ROI. But, over time, as your pool starts to grow, you might not have to advertise every single role you receive from your clients, as you already have that ideal candidate in your passive candidate pipeline.

Negotiating Counter Offers
A counter offer from a candidate’s current employer is always challenging after you have spent time building a relationship, identifying a new opportunity and coordinating the interview process. As most passive candidates are currently employed, take a read of our blog on 7 Counter Offer Statistics Every Recruiter Needs To Know so, when you are presented with a counter offer, you have some stats and information to discuss with your candidate.

4 Tips For Building a Passive Candidate Pipline

1. Keep Your Friends Close (And Your Past Candidates Closer)

A. Stay in contact with your previously placed candidates
With your previously placed candidates, you can rely on their ability to perform at an interview and you already have that relationship based on finding them their current job. Set a reminder every 6 months to check how they are doing and you’ll be first to recognise when they may be interested in hearing about new opportunities.

B. Stay in contact with candidates you didn’t place
You may have represented candidates in the past who accepted another job offer. By keeping in regular contact with them, you can ensure that the next time they’re looking to move for another role, your name will be first on their mind.

C. Make use of your existing network
Ask your circle of friends if they, or any of their colleagues, might be interested in new opportunities.

2. Build Your Personal Brand

It is one thing to represent your recruitment agencies brand but, as a recruiter, a lot relies on you, as a individual. The more you can gain a positive reputation in your specialist sector, the more receptive passive candidates will be to talking to you.

Write blogs or share industry news on social media that will resonate with your target candidates. By becoming part of the online community, you will begin to build relationships with relevant candidates without thrusting your open vacancies in their face. Optimise your LinkedIn profile to be as transparent as possible and encourage personal reviews on your LinkedIn profile from past candidates.

Attend events that your candidates will likely attend. It doesn’t always have to be business events either. Social events can be more lucrative for building real relationships and no matter how helpful new technology can be, there is nothing more effective than meeting someone face-to-face.

3. Be Authentic

At every point of communication with a passive candidate, authenticity is paramount. Passive candidates are often strangers before you contact them, they don’t owe you anything so by being personal, polite and genuinely interested in their career, you can give yourself the best chance of connecting with them.

4. Use The Tools At Your Disposal

Believe it or not, your recruitment software can also be an excellent tool for helping to attract and manage your passive candidate pipeline:

  • Add a personal touch to your communication with past candidates by recalling earlier conversations recorded in the communication log.
  • Use your recruitment software to schedule in reminders to contact passive candidates – don’t rely on your memory for everything.
  • Segment your candidate pipeline into active and passive candidates so you can manage where you need to devote your time.

Building a continuous pipeline of passive candidate is a long game tactic, as it takes time each day to reach out and build those relationships. But by focusing and developing pipelines of both active and passive candidates, you will be in a better stance to fill your clients roles quicker and more effectively.

Are your recruiters consistently struggling to hit their target? Download our free guide below and build an exceptional recruitment team.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

The GDPR Compliance Toolkit For Recruitment Agencies

As we are fast approaching the new GDPR regulations coming into effect on the 25th May 2018, all organisations that process individual/personal data as a ‘data controller’ or ‘data processor’ within the European Union (EU) are required to comply with the new regulation to avoid increased fines and penalties.

During our own extensive research on the new regulations, we have come across a multitude of online articles, blogs, guides and white papers providing advice on the new GDPR regulations, but not all of them deliver.

So to shortcut this exhaustive process for you, here’s our shortlist of the best online GDPR resources including some specifically for the recruitment industry to make up your GDPR compliance toolkit*.

NB: Be sure to bookmark this page for later so you can easily access the best resources on GDPR.

Quick Reads on GDPR

A Short Guide To The EU GDPR | IT Governance

IT Governance are a “leading global provider of IT governance, risk management and compliance solutions”. Their guide will give you the basic breakdown of what GDPR is, the primary impact it will have on organisations and what you will need to do to comply with the new regulation. It’s a 3 minute read so if you know nothing about the upcoming regulation changes, here’s a good place to start.

What is GDPR? The Need To Know Guide | Eclipse Software

Our recently published blog aims to provide a straightforward guide to the answers of the 8 most frequently searched questions in Google about GDPR. You will get concise information of the basics, as well as:

  • Who Enforces GDPR?
  • Are GDPR Fines Insurable?
  • What Does GDPR’s “right to be forgotten” Rule Mean?
  • Will GDPR Apply After Brexit?

Are You GDPR Ready? HubSpot’s Checklist | HubSpot

HubSpot’s GDPR section is very useful and practical for all organisations looking to prepare for GDPR. If you know the basics of GDPR for your recruitment agency but aren’t quite sure where to start, HubSpot’s checklist gives you the questions you will need to ask yourself in order to begin the process of compliance. It will only take 5 minutes to read but, after reading this resource you’ll feel a lot more confident of what you need to do before 25th May 2018.

Longer Reads on GDPR

Preparing For EU GDPR | Alan Calder

Founder of IT Governance, Alan Calder, is the author of EU GDPR: A Pocket’s Guide and in this resource, he provides a more detailed breakdown of the particular legislation changes that will occur after 25th May 2018 and what approach to take. The slideshare is accompanied by a 1 hour video presentation so, if you’re more engaged by video, then this is the resource for you.

Supporting GDPR Compliance in Recruitment | Volcanic

Volcanic, who specialise in making websites for recruitment agencies, have a wealth of knowledge about GDPR and how to make your website compliant for the new regulation. Their download, Supporting GDPR Compliance in Recruitment is a comprehensive guide specifically for agencies and covers:

  • Do I really need to comply with GDPR?
  • What does GDPR mean for me?
  • 12 steps to support GDPR compliance

What Does GDPR Mean For Recruitment Agencies? | Eclipse Software

Our downloadable eBook is a comprehensive guide specifically for recruitment agencies. We might be biased but we think it covers everything you need to consider when preparing for GDPR, plus a little bit more. Sections include:

  • An Individual (Candidate) Rights
  • The Definition of Personal Data
  • How Will GDPR Impact Recruitment Agencies?
  • What Does Your Recruitment Agency Need To Do?

GDPR In Full

If you still haven’t quite had your fill of GDPR compliance and would like to study the finer points of the legislation complete with legal terminology, you can use the two resources below:

Guide to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) | ICO

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is the UK’s independent body set up to uphold information rights. Their complete guide is a bit more user friendly than the legislation itself and they also have a very useful 12 step guide as well as self assessment checklists for data controllers and data processors.

REGULATION (EU) 2016/679 | Official Journal Of The European Union

The regulation in full may not be the most engaging reading, but if you interested in reading the official language direct from the source, here is every clause of the GDPR legislation.

gdpr recruitment agency

*Disclaimer: Any person who intends to rely upon or use the information contained herein in any way is solely responsible for independently verifying the information and obtaining independent expert advice if required.

The Top 4 UK & Ireland Recruitment & Technology Trends For 2018

The recruitment industry, and technology, as a whole is constantly evolving. The new year provides a natural opportunity to take stock of the year we’ve left behind and to speculate about the year ahead. In November 2017 we conducted an online survey targeting recruitment professionals across the UK and Ireland to seek their thoughts, predictions and insights regarding the landscape of the recruitment industry and technology for 2018.

Below are 4 trends taken from our 2018 UK & Ireland Recruitment & Technology Landscape eBook.

1. 2018 A Year For Growth

Despite the ongoing brexit progression and the upcoming GDPR legislation, there is still a remarkably positive attitude across the employment and recruitment sector. In fact, the Office of National Statistics recently reported that unemployment in the UK has dropped to 1.44 million, a four decade low.

This is reflected in our survey, where 94.9% of recruitment agencies are predicting growth in 2018. This is primarily due to current sector demand according to 57.1% of surveyed participants. ONS statistician David Freeman confirms the prediction of recruitment professional in the UK & Ireland commenting, “Demand for workers clearly remain[s] strong.”

2. Finding Top Talent Remains Top Challenge

Although this is very positive for the recruitment industry in the UK, with a low unemployment rate and a strong demand for workers, it seems inevitable that this will perpetuate the skills shortage conundrum, making finding top talent the pressing challenge for recruiters. Almost three quarters (74.6%) of recruitment agencies predicted that this will remain true for 2018.

Recruitment agencies will need to rely on their skills of nurturing lasting relationships with passive candidates to build a pipeline of talent to place candidates in their clients’ hard-to-fill roles.

3. AI & Machine Learning Yet To See Investment

The development of new technology making a huge impact on the recruitment sector is not a new thing. If you cast your mind back only 10 years, LinkedIn Recruiter didn’t exist, recruitment software was in its infancy and social media wasn’t the widespread business tool that we know it is today. Last year saw a lot of hype surrounding the birth and implementation of AI and machine learning and you may have heard stats similar to:

By 2020, 85% of customer interactions will be managed without a human.”

Having witnessed all of this, it doesn’t seem that UK & Ireland recruitment agencies are completely convinced about how this emerging technology can help their agency improve on a daily basis in 2018. Only 5.6% of recruitment professionals are considering AI & machine learning as a potential investment this year. There seems to be a much greater appetite for investment in tried and tested technologies with recruitment software (77.8%) and the website (55.6%) proving the most popular.

4. Social Media Remains Key To Candidate & Client Engagement

Social media has grown in importance over the last decade and it seems that this is unlikely to change in 2018. In fact, surveyed agencies predict that it may even have a larger part to play this year. Over half of recruitment agencies (50.8%) identified it as the technology predicted to have the biggest impact in the recruitment industry in 2018 and 89.8% recognised it as an key channel for their agency.

What is fascinating is the wide variety of tasks that recruiters now rely on social media for:

Social Media Trends Recruitment 2018

For a complete picture of 2018 Recruitment Industry and Technology Trends in the UK & Ireland, download our free eBook today.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

7 Counter Offer Statistics Every Recruiter Needs To Know

Counter offers are among the most frustrating turn of events that can happen during the recruitment process. You’ve put in the hours of hard graft, having built a strong relationship with a candidate and introduced them to your client who, after months of searching, has identified your candidate as “The One.” They place a strong offer on the table and you can’t wait to get on the phone to tell your star candidate the exciting news.

They sound positive on the phone but they need a few days to consider the offer – nothing out of the ordinary. You’ve had a few high fives in the office and you’re already mentally spending the bonus money that you know your placement will bring in this month.

And then, it happens!

Their current employer swoops in with the counter offer and you can sense the placement, and your monthly target, slipping away. And we all know that, more often than not, counter offers DO NOT work out in the long term. To help you manage the situation effectively and convince your candidate to make the right decision for them, here’s 7 counter offer statistics you can use when you’re having that crucial conversation.

1. 80% of candidates who accept a counter offer from their current employer end up leaving within 6 months.

Perhaps the most popular statistic recruiters are drawn towards is this one. It confirms the suspicion that by the time a candidate is motivated enough to go through the application and interview process for another role, even if they accept a counter offer, they will not be staying at the company in the long term. This may be for a number of reasons; whether they accept the counter offer and then quickly decide it is the wrong choice or they lose respect from their superiors and are inclined to move on a few months later.

2. 9 out of 10 candidates who accept a counter offer leave their current employer within the twelve-month mark.

Just to put the nail in the coffin, this statistic shows just how fragile the candidate’s future at their existing company is, if they accept. A counter offer is beneficial to the current employer because it also buys them sufficient time to look for a long term replacement, with the knowledge that the candidate is almost certain to leave within 12 months.

3. 50% of candidates that resign will be counter offered by their current employer.

In the past, counter offers were reserved only for senior members of staff but, in the last 10 years, the tendency for the existing company to counter offer has increased, even for more junior roles. As we can see from stat 4, although a counter offer may make the candidate feel valued, in truth, it is often more financially beneficial for the employer to make a counter offer than to immediately accept defeat.

4. It can cost the current employer as much as 213% of annual salary to replace a senior executive.

Financially speaking, counteroffers make complete sense to employers, particularly for senior roles. If the employer is tasked with replacing an employee who earns £85,000, this means it could potentially cost up to £181,000 when you factor in the recruitment process, time lost on work and training costs.

When you consider this, counter offering with a salary rise of £20,000 doesn’t seem like such an extravagant risk for an employer. In fact, employers can temporarily satisfy the requirements of a key employee in the knowledge that they can prepare themselves for their departure.

5. 50% of candidates that accept counter offers from their current employer are active again within 60 days.

This statistic re-emphasises just how short term the solution of accepting a counter offer can be for candidates. There are often a multitude of reasons why candidates are looking for a new role and, for the majority of cases, the novelty of an increased salary and the promise of more responsibility wears off very quickly; usually within 2 months.

6. Only 38% of hiring managers reported not making counter offers at all.

Admittedly, this statistic is from 2014 but it is unlikely to have dropped dramatically. The reality is that hiring managers will make counter offers if they feel that it is financially viable or they honestly feel that they can offer the candidate a more worthwhile career proposition. So if you haven’t come across them as a recruiter yet, it really is only a matter of time. The wise thing to do is to have your facts and figures prepared to help manage a counter offer situation when, not if, it happens.

7. 57% of employees accept counter offers made to them.

The demoralising fact is that the majority of counter offers are still accepted but this shouldn’t demotivate you. As a recruiter, you must act as an adviser to your candidate, giving them the broader context and the clarity to judge for themselves, but ultimately leaving the decision up to them. After all, it is their future and their career and whether they accept the counteroffer or not, you want to maintain a solid relationship with your strongest candidates so that when they are ready to make the next step up, they think of coming to you first.

Our survey of recruitment professionals identified “finding top talent” as the number 1 challenge for recruiters in 2018. Download the full eBook and learn what else 2018 has in store.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

What is GDPR? The Need To Know Guide

Over the last 6-12 months, the vast majority of recruitment agencies have been beginning to focus more and more on reviewing their approach of data processing to address the upcoming GDPR legislation. To give you a simple need to know guide, we have compiled the answers to the 8 most frequently searched questions in Google about GDPR.

What Is GDPR?

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (Regulation (EU) 2016/679) is the much anticipated legislation that aims to further safeguard and standardise individuals’ data across European (EU) member states for all citizens.

The EU’s GDPR website says the legislation is designed to “harmonise” data privacy laws across all EU member states as well as give greater protection and rights to individuals. But why now?

You only have to think about how data collection and processing has changed in your industry since the 1990s to recognise the necessity to revise these regulations – it really was only a matter of time. What this means for organisations across EU member states is that they will have to audit and amend their data processes for individuals, accordingly, to comply with the new and updated laws.

When Does GDPR Come Into Force?

The new GDPR regulation comes into force for all EU member states from 25 May 2018. This means that you will have to have changed your processes before this data or risk incurring the increased fine. The new legislation was agreed to by all member states of the EU on 24th May 2016 giving businesses two years to comply.

Who Enforces GDPR?

Each member state of the EU will appoint Supervisory Authorities (SA) who will be in charge of enforcing GDPR. These SAs will be responsible for upholding GDPR regulation in their own individual states coordinated by the European Data Protection Board. They each have investigatory and corrective powers meaning that they can:

  • Conduct audits
  • Issue warnings and reprimands
  • Impose bans
  • Suspend data transferring
  • Issue administrative fines

The rigour with which the SAs enforce the legislation will depend entirely on the individual SAs and member states themselves. According to IT Governance, historically, this has differed quite significantly with Germany and Spain typically being toughest on data protection in comparison to the Republic of Ireland, which has a track record of being lenient.

Will GDPR Replace The Data Protection Act (DPA)?

Simply – yes.
The GDPR supersedes the 1995 Data Protection Directive (DPD) which was issued to all European states. The UK’s 1998 Data Protection Act will be superseded by a new DPA that will enact the GDPR requirements.

What Are The Maximum GDPR Fines?

The maximum fines under GDPR have increased to €20m (Approx £17.6m) or 4% of an organisations annual global turnover, whichever is larger.

This is a huge increase on the DPA’s current maximum fine of £500,000 but the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has assured that fines will not become the norm. Writing in August 2017, the Information Commissioner, Elizabeth Denham stated that, “issuing fines has always been, and will continue to be, a last resort”. In fact of the 17,300 cases concluded in 2016/2017, only 16 of them resulted in fines.

Are GDPR Fines Insurable?

As GDPR has not come into effect yet, there is not a definitive answer to this question and it will depend on a case by case basis. In brief, if a business is deemed to be committing a criminal offence, it seems likely that they will NOT be insured against GDPR fines under the principle of the “illegality defence.” The “illegality defence” prevents a claimant from pursuing a civil claim against another party if the claim is based on the claimant’s own illegal acts.
If you would like a more comprehensive answer on this topic, read brownejacobson’s blog.

What Does GDPR’s “right to be forgotten” Rule Mean?

Article 17 of the GDPR, the right to erasure or “right to be forgotten” has become a focal point of the upcoming GDPR. Under the new regulation, it will become an individual right to request the deletion or removal of personal data when there is no compelling reason for its continued processing.

Some of the most common instances where an individual can request erasure are:

  • Where the personal data is no longer necessary in relation to the purpose for which it was originally collected/processed
  • When the individual withdraws consent
  • When the individual objects to the processing and there is no overriding legitimate interest for continuing the processing
  • The personal data was unlawfully received and processed (i.e. otherwise in breach of the GDPR)

Want to read Article 17 in full?

Will GDPR Apply After Brexit?

Due to the fact that GDPR will come into force some 10 months before the expected end of the United Kingdom’s EU membership, businesses and organisations will have to prepare regardless of changes Brexit may undertake.
It is still wholly unclear what effect Brexit will have on data protection laws but the best estimate is that the UK’s data protection laws will aim to uphold the key tenets of GDPR, namely the increased rights of individuals’ data privacy and the increased transparency by which businesses process data.

How Will GDPR Affect Recruitment Agencies?

In our July 2017 GDPR blog, we outlined the key impacts that GDPR will have on recruitment agencies in terms of changes to processes, data management and documentation.

We have also published a GDPR eBook covering the following topics:
1. What GDPR means for recruitment agencies.
2. What recruitment agencies need to consider.
3. The candidate data-related Eclipse Recruitment Manager 4 software configuration and functionality options available to you when reviewing your GDPR approach and processes.
4. The top 10 frequently asked questions from clients with the recommended approach with using their Eclipse Recruitment Manager 4 software.

Request your free GDPR eBook today.

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What Is Blind Recruitment?

In recent years there have been some revealing studies regarding unconscious bias within the hiring process across the globe. Australian MP, Andrew Leigh, co-authored a study that found that Chinese applicants must submit 68% more applications to get an interview than those with “Anglo-Saxon” names. In the UK, according to research by the Commons Women and Equalities Committee, “Muslim women are three times more likely to be unemployed and looking for a job than women generally.”

To tackle such findings, the UK government announced that UCAS would carry out “name-blind” applications in 2017. This process has now been adopted by public sector bodies such as the civil service, BBC, NHS as well as large private companies including Deloitte, HSBC and Virgin Money.

But what is “name blind” or blind recruitment and how can it benefit you and your client’s hiring process?

What Is Blind Recruitment?

In essence, blind recruitment is a method to remove “criteria that could unintentionally bias managers, and give underrepresented groups confidence that their application will be fairly considered”. It is not just about hiding a candidate’s name, it is also about anonymising anything not relevant to the stage of the process recruiters and hiring managers are dealing with at the time. This can include gender, ethnicity, age, educational institution and even years of experience.

The aim of blind recruitment is to consider applications solely based on merit thereby removing immediate bias at the first stage of the hiring process.

What Are The Benefits Of Blind Recruitment?

Besides offering a fairer recruitment process to candidates and reducing unconscious bias currently concerning UK, and global, organisations, it can also increase diversity among the UK workforce. The benefits of diversity have been well documented recently, with one study reporting that increasing gender diversity by just one per cent will boost your bottom line by three. Furthermore, a one percent rise in race equality has been shown to increase your revenue by nine percent.

Interested in finding out more about diversity in the workplace, take a read of our blog.

Having an open and active diversity policy can also contribute to attracting millennial job seekers. A PwC study showed that, “86% of female and 74% of male millennials consider employers’ policies on diversity…when deciding which company to work for.” So, if the benefits are so evident, why isn’t everyone employing blind recruitment as part of their diversity policy?

Does Blind Recruitment Improve The Hiring Process?

There’s little doubt that blind recruitment can reduce bias at the first round of the hiring process, but there is a growing concern that this does not address the wider issue. By simply papering over the bias, you risk a false sense of achievement. The reality is that if a hiring manager holds any bias, unconscious or not, it is likely to show at some point in the interview process, leading to decreasing probability at each progressive stage.

Among the sceptics to blind recruitment is Jon Williams, the global leader of people and organisation at PwC, who admits that, “it is an awesome way of removing bias in the initial selection. But…there are very few jobs where you are going to appoint someone purely on the basis of a written submission.” To tackle the issue head on, all 20,000 PwC staff take part in unconscious bias training to raise awareness of stereotypes and encourage people to understand and challenge their own biases.

Blind recruitment is a positive response to the issues of discrimination in the hiring process but, as we can see, it is not a flawless solution. It is also important to equip recruiters and hiring managers with the necessary awareness training in order to combat the problem at the source.


Recruitment software can be used to bolster your diversity policy and make your selection process fairer. If you’re looking for new recruitment software, download our free eBook and make a decision with confidence.

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How Will GDPR Impact Recruitment Agencies?

There’s no doubt that you will have heard of the GDPR changes that come into effect as of 25th May 2018. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (Regulation (EU) 2016/679) is a regulation by which the European Parliament, the Council of the European Union and the European Commission intend to strengthen and unify data protection for all individuals within the European Union (EU).

By now, you will be aware that you need to start preparing for the new regulations immediately in time to safeguard your business against the increased maximum fine. In May 2018, the fine increases to €20 million or 4% of global turnover (whichever is greater).

Unless you are adept at deciphering a 88 page legal document filled with countless “articles” and “clauses”, you may not feel completely confident in what the best plan of action is for your agency. So, let’s strip it back and clarify the key “highlights” of what GDPR means for recruitment agencies and how it may impact you on a day-to-day basis.

NB: This list is not exhaustive as GDPR will affect all agencies differently. Do your research to ensure your business processes comply with the new regulations. For 12 steps to take now, take a look at Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO)’s free guide.

What Does GDPR Mean For Recruitment Agencies?

Contrary to what some articles are insinuating – GDPR does not mean wholesale changes to your business model and certainly won’t be the end of recruitment! In reality, if your agency is complying with the current Data Protection Act (DPA), the majority of your approach will assist you well under the new laws.

However, there are some significant changes and they revolve around your recruitment agency being more transparent to your candidates about how you collect, store and use their data. The most important points include:

  1. Separate consent must now be sought for separate processing activities (such as, for example, when a candidate has put his or her details forward for one vacancy and these are then used for an unrelated purpose).
  2. Implied consent (that may come from the terms and conditions laid out by a job board) is not enough as personal data cannot now be shared on that basis.
  3. All candidate submissions must be submitted to a valid role and they have to have been contacted by the recruiter and given the vacancy details before the CV is sent.
  4. You will have direct responsibility for your own compliance with the GDPR and must be able to demonstrate a paper trail of compliance in your records.

So how will these changes impact your agency and what changes do you need to put in place to become compliant?

How Will GDPR Impact Recruitment Agencies?

The first action to take is to document your current processes. This means identifying how you collect, store and use candidates’ data as part of the recruitment/hiring process. Mapping out your registration/application process will allow you to identify where consent needs to be attained, and what information you must provide to the candidate. For example, under the new laws, you must set out the purposes for which the data is going to be processed, how it will be retained, and must state the right to have personal data deleted or rectified.

In the past, many recruiters were able to be very independent in their methods of using personal data but the new regulations reduce this grey area. By documenting your processes, you will be able to see how your recruiters operate. giving you the opportunity to systemise your operations under a more diligent methodology.

The act of “speccing” candidates will also come under further scrutiny within the new regulations. GDPR mandates that the sharing of personal data cannot be on a basis of implied consent, such as from a job board, and must come directly from the candidate. This may impact some recruitment processes but best practice dictates that you should always wait for a candidate’s permission before “speccing” their CV.

Data Management
Having a centralised system that handles all of your candidate and client data is imperative under GDPR. It will be more challenging to ensure compliance to the upcoming regulations if your data is being stored in multiple applications such as Excel, Word, Outlook and/or a recruitment CRM. By handling your data collection process in one place, you and your recruiters can monitor how data is being collected, stored and used without ambiguity. This will give you the clarity you need to make the appropriate changes.

This is vital for GDPR because agencies must be able to provide the “paper trail” that documents the onboarding and data processes. So, as well as changing how you onboard candidates, you will need to make sure your Applicant Tracking System (ATS) or recruitment software is used to record the required activity. For example, you will need to be able to show when candidates were onboarded, what information was given, what consent was acquired and how the data was used.

The most fundamental impact for all agencies will be in updating their documentation, both internally and externally. The internal documents by which you induct new staff members will need to be free of ambiguity and current staff must be aware of any changes to their daily activity. External documents such as onboarding contracts and policies will also need to reviewed and revised to meet the increased demand for stipulating consent and how the data will be used.

To manage the delivery of these requirements, it may be necessary to appoint a Data Protection Officer or consult legal professionals because, ultimately, getting your recruitment agency “over-prepared” is worth the investment.


In summary GDPR provides recruitment agencies the impetus to clarify their internal processes and become more transparent to their candidate with how there information will be processed and used. By preparing your agency now and making the necessary changes, you can ensure your agency and recruitment consultants comply with the upcoming regulations.

Need More Information On GDPR For Your Recruitment Agency?

Take a read of our other informative GDPR blogs:

  • A need to know guide which provides the answers to the 8 most frequently searched questions in Google about GDPR.
  • A GDPR compliance toolkit including the best online GDPR resources including some specifically for the recruitment industry.

Request our free GDPR eBook below for more detailed information on GDPR and how to centralise your data management all within one recruitment CRM system.

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Diversity In The Workplace: What Recruiters Need To Know

A recent Forbes Insights survey of more than 300 senior executives revealed that companies’ top two priorities for diversity and inclusion are; the recruitment of diverse employees (65%) and the retention of diverse talent (44%). Given these statistics, it stands to reason that top recruiters and agencies should not only be aware of their clients’ increasing diversity strategies but are in a unique position to advise on its growing importance.

The reason having a diverse workplace has become a global aspiration of modern organisations is not solely based on social morality and brand awareness, it is also based on evidence that it increases productivity and revenue. A 2015 Mckinsey study showed that:

“In the United Kingdom, greater gender diversity on the senior-executive team corresponded to the highest performance uplift in our data set: for every 10 percent increase in gender diversity, Earnings Before Interest & Taxes (EBIT) rose by 3.5 percent.”

By having a plethora of cultures, experiences and different perspectives in the workplace, organisations are reaping the benefits in terms of creativity and productivity. To gain a broad understanding of the issues involved and how diversity is being implemented across the globe, let’s focus on what D & I means and which companies are leading the charge.

What Is Diversity & Inclusion In The Workplace?

Breaking it down, diversity refers to the mutual respect and appreciation of different groups of people including ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, education, religion and age. Inclusion is the process of creating a strategy that encourages all groups to have a voice and giving equal and ample opportunity for any individual to develop in the workplace.

Who Is Doing Diversity Well?

The National Football League (NFL)

The Rooney Rule was introduced in 2003 and aimed to increase racial diversity within the coaching ranks because, although 70% of players were black, only 6% of coaches were held by minorities. The rule stipulates that for any open position, the organisation has to interview at least one minority candidate. Despite taking some criticism, there’s no doubt that it has had a positive impact. By just 2006, the share of minority coaches had risen to 22%.

Perhaps the biggest success of the Rooney Rule is the fact that it has been adopted and evolved by many companies including Facebook, Pinterest and even the Pentagon.

British Airways (BA)

After conducting a survey in 2014, which revealed that 63% of women said they were deterred from becoming a pilot at a young age, British Airways launched the Future Pilot Programme – a cadet training facility aimed at bringing more female pilots and experienced employees into its ranks. As a result, in 2016, they recruited a record number of pilots.

Captain Stephen Riley commented, “We’re extremely proud that we have more female pilots than ever before, and we are continuing our recruitment campaign to encourage more women to apply to fly commercial aircraft.”

Although the number of female pilots in the UK is still low, at 6%, it does stand at double the global average of 3%. This campaign has also paved the way for other airlines to implement similar strategies such as Virgin Atlantic’s Future Flyers Programme, which launched earlier this year.

Female Pilot Diversity

Ernst & Young (EY)

EY are currently ranked no. 1 for’s Top 50 Companies for Diversity, having appeared in the top 5 for the last 8 years. This award is primarily based on the ability to recruit, onboard, develop and retain talented individuals. Amongst other initiatives, EY became the first professional services firm to equalise paid parental leave. This means that both fathers and mothers are now eligible for up to 16 weeks of fully paid leave.

EY has also established the Neurodiversity Account Support program which aims to develop and provide employment opportunities to people who have neurological conditions such as Asperger’s and Tourette’s Syndrome, whilst at the same time improving client service delivery. There are currently 300 people in this function in US and EY and planning to expand it globally in 2017.


Like many of their social media and tech counterparts, Pinterest have been criticised for their lack of diversity, particularly within senior roles. So, in 2016, they decided to take the brave step in announcing their D&I goals. These included:

  • Increase hiring rates for full-time engineering roles to 30% female.
  • Increase hiring rates for full-time engineers to 8% underrepresented ethnic backgrounds.
  • Increase hiring rates for non-engineering roles to 12% underrepresented ethnic backgrounds.
  • Implement a Rooney Rule-type requirement where at least one person from an underrepresented background and one female candidate is interviewed for every open leadership position.

By laying bare their goals, achievements and shortcomings, they have held themselves accountable for improving diversity within the tech industry.

What Can Recruiters Learn?

Since 65% of senior executives believe the responsibility for implementing diversity and inclusion programs falls on HR, it should be a priority for recruiters to understand these issues, provide support and offer solutions to the problems faced in implementing and meeting D&I goals. By considering diversity and inclusion, recruiters can position themselves as trusted advisors and become more involved with their clients’ hiring process.

Do you want your recruiters to become exceptional rather than just great? Download your free guide on the components you need to improve your recruitment team.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

How To Write A Job Advert For Millennials

Millennials are the first generation to be brought up in a media-saturated world. These digital natives are better informed than their predecessors, have different needs and a much higher expectation of the companies they choose to work for. Millennials prioritise purpose over profits, valuing socially conscious organisations that foster innovative thinking and invest in their development.

The first point of contact in reaching digital-savvy millennials is the job advert – the bread and butter of recruitment consultants. The formula, or structure, for a successful job ad has changed dramatically; what would have attracted a job seeker five years ago is unlikely to grab the attention of a millennial today.

So, if you want to attract this digital-savvy demographic – which will make up three-quarters of the global workforce by 2025, says Deloitte – here are some recommendations on how to structure and write your job ads for attracting millennials:

Honest and Human

Similar to reading phrases like ‘strong communication skills’ or ‘good problem solver’ in a CV, your job ad is unlikely to excite millennials if it’s packed with buzzwords and empty phrases. Don’t be robotic: rather than copy and pasting a list of duties, describe the skills and personality traits of the ideal candidate.

Paint an honest bigger picture by highlighting meaningful work your company (or clients company) has carried out, as well as any aspects of the job that may appeal to the job seeker’s career goals.

Focus on Learning

Millennials are career-driven and keen to expand their knowledge. As a result, they want to be sure that the company they work for will provide them with the tools and training they need to develop and flourish in their roles.

Your job ad should explain how your company or client is committed to their professional growth from the outset. Create a clear path of progression, so that they know that working for your company could lead to a career full of exciting opportunities.

Discuss Company Culture

Company culture is a big deal for millennials. Research shows that companies with exceptional culture enjoy improved employee satisfaction and lower turnover. In fact, a study cited by SD Worx, found that companies with an outstanding culture outperform other businesses by 202%, So, your job ad needs to demonstrate what makes your company unique – what sets you apart from the rest?

From free breakfast to dress-down days and fitness facilities, list company perks that will appeal to millennials job seekers. Make sure you also showcase the social good of your company – for instance; write about the charitable causes you support. Ultimately, your ad needs to boast about your company and inspire millennials into thinking: “I want to be part of that.”

Make Your Adverts Mobile-First

Smartphones are the device of choice among millennial job seekers, so it’s essential that your company website and jobs pages are optimised for mobile devices. If millennials can’t easily access the ad, they won’t hesitate to move on to the next company. In fact, since the widespread adoption of smartphones, the average mobile user’s attention span is now less than a goldfish.

Want to know how to make your job ads stand out on social media, read our blog.

Sharing your job advert on social media is really important too, given that millennials spend just over six hours a week on sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, Nielsen reports. As well as letting users know about vacancies, social media allows you to engage directly with prospective candidates, which could better your chances of appealing to them.

Support Text With Visuals

Text-heavy job adverts won’t grab the attention of millennials, so think of ways to incorporate visual elements within your ads. High-quality images, videos and infographics can help you to form deeper connections with millennials – and what’s more, BuzzSumo says that Facebook posts with images get 2.3 times more engagement.

In addition, offering millennials the option of submitting video CVs can be a great alternative for your more creative clients.

Do you use video marketing in your agency? Take a read of our blog for some simple tips.

For millennials, first impressions are everything. By creating job adverts which resonate with their values, are visually appealing and shared across the right channels, recruiters stand the very best chance of attracting highly-skilled, talented candidates.


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9 Essential Skills Of A Modern Recruitment Consultant

There’s no doubt that the recruitment industry has undergone huge changes in the last decade. The influence of business intelligence, social media, advancement in technology and a candidate driven market, it is no surprise that the skill set required to succeed as a modern recruiter consultant has expanded somewhat.

With daily conversations with recruitment agencies across the UK and internationally, we hear a lot about what it takes for their recruitment consultants to succeed in the 21st century. So we’ve narrowed it down to 9 skills that are essential for the modern recruitment consultant.

1. Candidate-Centric Mindset

In traditional recruitment, you could construct a compelling job advert which became inundated with applications, which you could sift through to find the most capable candidates – simple enough.

Although this is still a worthwhile tactic, the process has become much more focused on the candidate experience. On top of producing job adverts, today’s successful recruiters are nurturing top talent on multiple platforms and expected to assist their clients in providing a seamless process that caters to the needs of the candidate. The more you can think from a candidate’s perspective, the more trust they will put in you as a recruiter.

2. Company Brand Ambassador

With the rise in popularity of social media, particularly LinkedIn, the personal brand of the individual recruiter has become even more important. What you publish and share online will be seen by candidates, clients and colleagues and must reflect your company values. In effect, as the recruiter, you become a brand ambassador both online and offline.

On the other hand, if you are capable of harnessing the power of social media to create an authentic online profile, aligned with your agencies content and brand strategy, you can position yourself, and your agency, as thought leaders. This personal brand can be used to attract a wider range of candidates and clients within your sector.

3. Social Media Savvy

Since LinkedIn Recruiter launched in 2008, there has been a seismic shift in how recruiters use social media – and it keeps on evolving. Instead of using LinkedIn purely for trawling through candidate profiles, the top, modern recruiters are targeting separate demographics on different channels and even running webinars or creating specific groups to increase brand awareness and publishing meaningful content.

They are also using social media for social listening; monitoring clients, candidates and competitors, tracking conversations around specific phrases, words or brands, and then leveraging them to discover opportunities or create content for those audiences.

4. Networking Machine (online and offline)

Attending events sounds like an old school skill, but it’s still as crucial as ever. These might be the traditional, like a black tie award ceremonies or online, facilitating a Twitter Q&A session, discussing changes in the market. Being authentic, determined and visible in the market by engaging with “real life” people will help build the connections that might secure that elusive client meeting.

5. Data Strategist

On its own, data is simply information or numbers. What separates good recruiters from great recruiters is the ability to analyse and convert data into actionable outcomes. By maximising your own recruitment software and the abundance of data now available online, top recruiters are able to identify trends in their sectors, and the market, and implement proactive recruitment strategy to stay ahead of the curve.

6. Technological Tester

With the influx of various technological tools, a modern recruitment consultant needs to recognise which tools will survive and add value to their daily routine and which are temporary fads. If you take Buffer and Hootsuite, for example, they are very similar marketing tools on the face of it but, in reality, they can be used for very different things. Where Buffer is arguably a superior tool for scheduling social media posts and tweets, Hootsuite streams is great for social listening. Being able to distinguish value in different technology is a skill that can separate you from your colleagues and competitors.

7. Consultative Approach

As a recruiter, aspiring to have a consultative approach with clients is not a modern phenomenon, but it has become a bigger part of the required skill set. By keeping on top of trends in the recruitment industry, top recruiters aim to become trusted partners to clients rather than just a provider of candidates. By being involved in the hiring conversation, top recruiters become indispensable to their client’s talent strategy.

A consultative approach also applies to managing candidates. The best recruiters guide candidates through the application and interview process, providing tips and advice specific to their clients or industry sector.

8. Content Marketer

In a 2016 survey, 86% of recruiters agreed that recruitment is becoming more like marketing and there is no reason to think that this has dropped significantly. To attract passive candidates and nurture client leads, top recruiters are beginning to produce effective content strategies, including blogs, social ads and video marketing. The modern recruiter knows how to write content that resonates with their target audience and how important this is as an aspect of their recruitment strategy.

9. Master of Influence

Some things don’t change. The ability to influence people, on the candidate and client side, is the bedrock of a successful recruitment consultant. No matter how many technological gadgets arise within the recruitment industry, the human connection will always remain a key facet to recruiting and should not be underestimated. Building from that strong foundation, a modern recruiter can use their influence to communicate across multiple platforms and channels to reach more diverse candidates and engineer profitable relationships.

Finding exceptional recruiters is just one component of building a top recruitment team. Want to know what else is essential? Download our free guide today.

How to build an exceptional recruitment team

5 Top UK Recruitment Sectors to Watch in 2017

Despite the UK recruitment market’s initial anxiety after Brexit, the positive mood has returned in the majority of sectors in 2017. The UK recruitment industry is currently valued at £31.5b, anticipated to grow by up to 6.9% this year,  and, “contributes more to the UK economy than advertising, arts and recreation, and the food and beverage industry.” Contract recruitment, in particular, grew by 9.7% last year, holds 91% of the total market share and has 1.2 million contractors on active placements on any given day.

Agencies have become experts at recognising trends and opportunities in their specialist sectors and in providing the necessary talent that will equip organisations to deal with everything that the future holds.

We’ve taken a look at a number of top UK recruitment sectors to determine what 2017 might have in store for them and what that may mean for agencies recruiting in those sectors.

Rail: A Surge in Confidence

Confidence is high in the rail industry and this is clear when speaking to the engineers themselves. According to a Matchtech survey, 72% of engineers believe that the rail sector will grow or increase its revenues over the next 12 months. The industry has been all but immune to political uncertainty and this is largely down to existing and upcoming projects such as HS2, Crossrail 2, Bank Station Capacity Upgrade and the London Bridge Thameslink Redevelopment.

Graham Day of Matchtech explains that because the rail industry is dominated by, “major capital investment projects…it tends to represent a fixed ‘pool of investment’ which…can be less volatile to economic and political uncertainty.”

Although these projects are beneficial for the sector and recruiters overall, there is a growing concern that the skills shortage could pose a significant threat to the delivery of this work. Therefore, recruiters will play an important role in delivering the required engineers in 2017 to ensure these projects are completed without delay.

Construction: A Positive State of Repair

Construction is an industry hard hit by the EU Referendum and the future still looks cloudy. However, there are still clear silver linings which have given the industry a buoyant mood since the end of 2016. In the November budget statement, the government announced a £23bn investment fund for infrastructure, focussing heavily on roads, rail and broadband capabilities.

In reaction to this, Daniel Kemp of Construction News reported that, “the latest Purchasing Managers’ Index shows that growth in new construction orders hit an 11-month high in December.” In spite of this, there is still major concern regarding the potential of rising import costs and this will continue to be a theme throughout 2017.

Given this, construction recruitment agencies need to be aware of their clients’ precarious situation and provide assistance accordingly. 2017 still offers plenty of opportunity and skilled workers will always be in high demand, but agencies must pay close attention to Brexit developments and how that could affect the industry in the long term.

5 Top UK Recruitment Sectors to Watch in 2017

Renewable Energy: An Optimistic Future

The overall picture for the Renewable Energy sector is one of new opportunity. Although the UK still has the largest amount of installed offshore wind capacity in Europe, wind and solar have seen a major slowdown in large scale projects over the last 2 years, primarily thanks to a change in government subsidies.

According to Allen & York, Built and Natural Environment Recruitment Specialists, the growth for this sector lies in keys areas such as Energy from Waste(EfW), Anaerobic Digestion(AD) biomass and gasification. Alongside regulation, these areas have seen sustained growth in the last two years and this looks set to continue in 2017.

With the EU bound to the promise to meet their Renewable Energy Direction by 2020, recruitment will remain fruitful this year and with 87% employees actively looking to move jobs, agencies can feel optimistic about the year ahead.

Brexit Experts: A Silver Lining

Brexit has brought with it a widespread doubt to many industries and recruitment agencies have had to react to this with patience. As the year draws on, it seems that the consequences of leaving the EU will become more apparent, but for those looking to capitalise on the present, the need for Brexit specialists is an area that could define 2017.

Government departments are being given the freedom to pay Brexit experts up to £142,000, which is almost as much as David Cameron earned as Prime Minister. This is to help the government deliver its promise to exit the EU by 2019.

The change in salary cap, which used to be £87,000, gives recruiters a huge opportunity to provide high quality candidates to the public sector. It is also predicted that major financial organisations will be looking for Brexit experts to fill similar roles in the coming 12 months and with the upcoming general election.

IT and Tech: Exponential Hope

Among such political turmoil, the IT and Tech sector have remained resilient and with new tech startups born every hour in the UK, it is easy to see why. The likes of Google and Facebook have revealed their intentions of opening new London headquarters in 2017, which should create 3,500 new jobs by 2020, alone.

This vote of confidence by two of the world’s biggest tech companies will no doubt rid any Brexit concerns for recruitment agencies and ensure 2017 is as lucrative as 2016. The main concern for recruiters will be finding specialised candidates for the greatest areas of demand including cyber security, business intelligence, big data and app development.

According to Recruitment Buzz, there is huge potential for growth within IT and Tech recruitment sector but the biggest question recruiters should consistently ask themselves is: Is this change going to see the jobs in my niche or sector become obsolete by this “disruptive tidal wave of technology or am I serving an area of growth?

So, although Brexit will continue to make ripples in 2017 combined with the general election announced, there is still plenty of hope in the vast majority of sectors for recruiters to play a vital role. This may mean becoming more specialised, making your processes more streamlined or taking advantage of new opportunities wherever they are found.

Discover the 7 secrets of successful recruitment agencies by downloading our free eBook below.

7 secrets of successful recruitment agencies free ebook download

LinkedIn Global Recruitment & Staffing Trends 2017: At A Glance

The recruitment industry has undergone dramatic change in recent years and the most successful agencies have tended to be the ones who have adapted and capitalised on emerging trends, such as social recruiting. Considering the exponential growth of technology, it is vital that your agency stays abreast of rising and falling recruitment trends that could affect your overall business strategy.

At Eclipse Software, we always look forward to the LinkedIn Global Recruitment & Staffing Trends report which gives a clear insight into the wider picture of the industry, and 2017 is no different. By analysing the data, we’ve put together a summary of what trends are already beginning to take shape this year.

The Lay of the Land

Despite global political events that have plagued certain countries in the last 12 months, it seems that recruitment agencies are working even harder to maintain and maximise growth potential. With 68% of staffing firms expecting to increase this year, 79% of staffing firms also expect to see an increase in candidates placed.

So, the mood is positive amongst political uncertainty and this might be due to an inward mentality that many agencies have adopted, refining their own processes and using technology to improve efficiencies to make the most of what they already have.

Read our blog on how to maximise your recruitment processes by adopting LEAN thinking.

Another reason could be the widespread reduction in time to place, with 83% of staffing firms advising that the average is now less than two months. It remains to be seen whether this will affect hiring quality or whether recruitment agencies are maximising the tools at their disposal to find high quality candidates at a faster rate.

Social Media for Agency Branding

Social media savvy recruiters are not only managing to find passive candidates and nurture client relationships online, social media is also becoming the most cost effective way to build your agency’s brand with LinkedIn coming out on top (74%), ahead of Twitter (36%). Referencing this with the current breakdown of recruiting budgets, it is also apparent that social media is delivering significant ROI for its low cost to set up and maintain.

LinkedIn Global Recruitment Trends 2017 – At A Glance

As a platform for branding, social media has huge potential to supplement marketing activity and attract new clients. Looking at the top 5 reasons clients are attracted to work with staffing firms (above), it seems likely that recruiters and will continue to invest more time into managing their social media platforms in 2017.

The Rise in Content Production

Closely linked to social media success is a dedicated content marketing strategy and 2017 has already shown that recruiters are taking notice. Rather than using social media just to engage with your audience and share newsworthy stories and open vacancies, leading recruitment agencies are proving their expertise by writing consistent and thought provoking blog pieces, producing podcasts and taking advantage of cost effective video marketing.

Interested in how your recruitment agency can implement video marketing? Take a read of our blog.

New Technology and Tools

LinkedIn Global Recruitment Trends 2017 – At A Glance

Although recruiters are still focused on traditional methods such as business development, there is a noticeable desire for cost effective technology which makes candidate sourcing faster and more efficient. If the skills shortage remains, the streamlining mentality will continue to grow and, as the LinkedIn Global Recruitment & Staffing report shows, this reveals itself in many ways. If recruitment agencies had an unlimited budget for 2017, the investment would be allocated to increasing the agencies brand through more creative online marketing programs, better candidate sourcing tools and new technology / recruitment software.

To discover the 7 secrets of successful recruitment agencies, download our free eBook below.

7 secrets of successful recruitment agencies free ebook download

Are Your Recruitment Processes LEAN?

Lean is a principle we have adapted with great success within our own business and has formed the basis of recommendations to our clients to maximise efficiencies and streamline processes within their recruitment agencies. This blog outlines how you might use lean to do more with less within your recruitment agency.

What is Lean?

The core idea is to maximize customer value while minimizing waste. Simply, lean means creating more value for customers with fewer resources. Lean Enterprise Institute

In the 1980s, Toyota outstripped its rivals to become the biggest global car manufacturer from rising sales to market share. This was, in part, attributed to its streamlined processes which focused on maximising the value adding processes and eliminating the non-value adding processes. Jim Womack, in his seminal book, The Machine that Changed the World, popularised this process as “lean” and, with it, a new philosophy was born. Since then, “lean thinking” has infiltrated sectors and industries around the world as an effective management philosophy that champions “how to do more with less.”

Let’s look at how you can streamline your recruitment processes by accommodating lean thinking into your recruitment agency.

Customer Focused

Toyota strategists understood that, in order to adopt a process that eliminated waste and increased value adding processes, they needed look at things from a consumer-centric standpoint. Only then could they really identify the areas that were adding value.

In the recruitment industry, this equates to understanding the needs of the various customers in your business, whether they’re individuals, departments, teams, divisions, candidates or clients. Each group must be assessed separately, analysing data (where possible), to ascertain what makes their lives easier and their recruitment journeys efficient and stress free. This can be achieved through regular feedback from clients, candidates and your consultants themselves.

Identifying & Eliminating Waste

The Lean Enterprise Research Centre (LERC) has suggested that, for most manufacturing operations, “only 5% of activities actually add value, 35% are necessary non value adding activities and 60% add no value at all.” In short, if a process adds no value to the customer then it is waste.

Looking at those figures, anyone in a position of seniority in a recruitment agency that seeks to improve the bottom line must ask two critical questions:

What percentage of your processes really add value to your customer?
What activities can be made more efficient?

These simple questions often result in uncomfortable answers.

For example, the time to fill a vacancy is a valuable metric which can suffer because of waste occurring in everyday routines through each step of the recruitment journey – from sourcing the right candidate, screening and interviewing, to placement. With each step, waste can be identified and by adopting lean thinking gradually, you can begin to streamline each procedure.

There’s often massive room for improvement, but a few simple building blocks will help you start to eliminate waste:

  • Ensure processes are followed during the candidate acquisition, registration and interview process.
  • Create standardised procedures for screening and registering candidates.
  • Identify what data needs to be captured and entered in your recruitment software at each stage of the recruitment process.
  • Continually review the way data is entered, managed and searched for in your recruitment software.
  • Record and review where your placed candidates are sourced from.
  • Map the candidate journey from CV collection to placement, and understand how technology can be used to automate repetitive tasks, track the candidate journey and reduce errors from double keying data.

By analysing individual processes and identifying where the value really lies, your frontline staff can recruit more efficiently and spend more time undertaking value adding activities.

Just in Time

Under the leadership of Taiichi Ohno, Toyota implemented a significant move away from the manufacturing norm to the Just in Time (JIT) process where parts were supplied only as and when they were required. As noted in Roberta Russell and Bernard Taylor’s Operations Management, although this process left, “no room for error,” its success was undeniable and became widely accepted by other global organisations. In one study, American firms that introduced JIT achieved an average 50% reduction in labour costs and 70% reduction in inventory over 5 years.

The theory behind this revolutionary framework can, also, be adopted to streamline your recruitment agency’s processes. By analysing and relying on the quality of your data and identifying trends in the market and your business, you can predict which candidates need to be supplied just at the point where the demand is rising allowing your consultants to source the highest quality candidates before demand peaks. However, this can only be effective with a lean recruitment database and rigorous processes in place.

Read our blog about how to maximise ROI from your recruitment software.

Another example of where JIT can eliminate waste is in candidate compliance. So much time is wasted getting every candidate compliant as quickly as possible. By applying the JIT philosophy, your agencies can focus on supplying compliant candidates as and when they’re needed. For example, from your data you may know that your hospital clients in London need 30% more doctors in December. This enables you to prepare more candidates and ensure they are compliant, ready for the increased demand.

Employee Empowerment

The communication and trust required to ensure lean thinking can operate at its peak begins with every employee. Their endorsement of the philosophy is as important as the cogs in Toyota’s manufacturing line. The clear frameworks and structural foundations should negate the need for micromanagement and empower your employees.

For example, train and allow employees to deal with issues autonomously (have an escalation process where needed) and have a feedback process for improvements. Employees should feel determined and empowered to analyse and improve your processes with you. An empowered workforce is the most efficient route to continuous improvement.

Continuous Improvement

Every successful process needs to be reviewed and tweaked because every business will have their own specific requirements and methods for reducing waste. By analysing your recorded data and listening to your employees and customers, you can refine your processes and implement a more streamlined and efficient strategy that is bespoke to your business.

How Can a Recruitment CRM Help?

Technology combined with a successful lean thinking strategy can play a significant part in eliminating waste and making your recruitment agency more streamlined. We have outlined some of our recommendations below:

  • Identify what your staff and business searching and reporting requirements are.
  • Set minimum data capture requirements at each stage of a process, which will improve real time searching and reporting.
  • Ensure candidate, client and vacancy records are recorded and coded up correctly to make real time searching effective and tools such as auto matching more efficient.
  • Set workflow rules to build in best practice and negate the need for micromanagement.
  • Record all candidate and client interactions.
  • Use pre-set rate templates to prevent consultants going outside contractual pricing.
  • Limit who can view, add or edit certain types of data within your recruitment CRM to ensure your data is protected and maintained correctly.

Discover the 7 Secrets of Successful Recruitment Agencies by downloading our free eBook below.

7 secrets of successful recruitment agencies free ebook download

IR35 Changes For Recruitment Agencies & Contractors

Despite opposition from contractors and employers alike, the new updates to IR35 will come into effect in April 2017 and this is likely to have a huge impact on UK recruitment agencies who employ contractors. But before digging into to the whys and wherefores, let’s understand what IR35 is, what the new regulations stipulate and how that might affect you as a public sector contract recruiter in the coming months.

What is IR35?

In April 2000, the government introduced the new IR35 ostensibly to combat employment tax avoidance by contractors working through intermediaries, such as Personal Service Companies (PSC). These “disguised employees” often worked long term contracts for employers whilst bypassing a large percentage of tax and NICs. IR35 aimed to ensure contractors paid a similar amount to those self-employed and directly employed.

However, the responsibility lay with the individual contractor to decide whether they fell “inside IR35” and, due to the vast amount of work this generated for HMRC, it has been impossible to enforce and remained largely ineffective. In fact, the HMRC recently estimated that, PSC’s non-compliance with IR35 is soaring at a rate of 90%.” In monetary terms, this employment tax avoidance is costing the Exchequer approximately £430m each year. Therefore, it is no surprise that there has been a concerted effort to remedy this in the upcoming regulation update. What does come as a surprise, to some, is how the government have proposed to do this.

How is IR35 changing?

Although the reforms were intended to be up for discussion, little has changed since the initial proposition was heard in early 2016. The section that has caused most debate in the recruitment industry stipulates that the burden of responsibility for ensuring that PSCs pay the correct tax and NICs now lies with the employer or the organisation who pays the salary.

This means that if your agency supplies contractors to the public sector, such as government departments, NHS, schools, BBC and publically owned companies, as of April 2017, it will be your responsibility to decide whether your contractors fall inside IR35 and are eligible for the increased tax and NICs deductions.

To help the HMRC police the new reforms, the government has planned the introduction of improved IR35 tests and a new digital tool. Suffice to note that if an agency is found to be negligent to the new laws, there will be steep penalties to pay.

What could this mean for the future?

In the immediate future, it looks as if the contractors will suffer the most, facing an average 13% income drop, according to Deloitte. As an example, Deloitte stated that if a contractor was earning £500 a day for 42 weeks, this would equate to a take home salary of £70,988. Under the new laws, their take home would fall to £61, 553.

Upon hearing the proposal back in March 2016, contractors reacted vehemently, with more than half the PSCs, 26,000 workers, vowing to quit if the law came into effect. Another theory is that contractors will have “no choice but to increase their daily pay rate” to compensate for any additional tax liability. Both of these eventualities would evidently have an adverse effect on employers, recruitment agencies and the public sector itself, which currently contributes £3.5 billion to the UK economy.

There are many who also predict that the new IR35 laws are being tested on the public sector and, depending on its success,will likely be extended to the private sector. John Chaplin, Executive Director at Ernst and Young, says that HMRC is using the public sector as “guinea pigs” and it’s only a matter of time before it impacts all UK contractors.

What should your agency do?

It is clear that the reformed IR35 will shake up the public sector and cause some alarming issues for recruitment agencies across the UK. However, the most effective way to prepare is neatly summarised by John Chaplin who recommends meeting technology with technology to, “drive efficiencies, such as in the policy creation process, and undertaking staff training and potentially client training too.” In this way, technology can be your safety net whatever the ensuing outcomes of the new regulations may be.

IR35 New Process Overview

recruitment agency IR35 flow chart

To support our customers with the IR35 changes we will be releasing an update to Eclipse Recruitment Manager 4 software in April 2017.

Discover the 7 Secrets of Successful Recruitment Agencies, download our free eBook below.

7 secrets of successful recruitment agencies free ebook download

Changes to the UK Immigration Rules

On the 3 November 2016, the UK government announced changes to the Immigration Rules which will affect applications made on or after 24 November 2016. The Home Office are making the following changes which will affect a number of categories.

Tier 2
The first of 2 phases of changes to Tier 2, announced by the government in March following a review by the Independent Migration Advisory Committee.

  • Increasing the Tier 2 (General) salary threshold for experienced workers to £25,000, with some exemptions.
  • Increasing the Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) salary threshold for short term staff to £30,000.
  • Reducing the Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) graduate trainee salary threshold to £23,000 and increasing the number of places to 20 per company per year.
  • Closing the Tier 2 (Intra Company Transfer) skills transfer sub-category.

These changes will come into effect for all certificates of sponsorship assigned by Tier 2 sponsors on or after 24 November 2016. The date from which intra company transfers will be liable for the health surcharge will be announced in due course.

Tier 4
A number of changes are being made, including amendments to the academic progression rule, maintenance requirements for the Doctorate Extension Scheme and evidence of overseas qualifications, UK qualifications used as evidence, and a series of minor and technical adjustments.

English Language Requirement
As announced in January 2016, a new English language requirement at level A2 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages is being introduced for non-EEA partners and parents. This affects those applying to extend their stay after 2.5 years in the UK on a 5-year route to settlement under Appendix FM (Family Member) of the Immigration Rules. The new requirement will apply to partners and parents whose current leave under the family Immigration Rules is due to expire on or after 1 May 2017.

We will keep you updated with more information as it is released.