Where is the light at the end of the tunnel for employers and recruiters in a post-COVID-19 world?

TALiNT International’s May / June issue is available to read now!

This month we present:

Reality, not normality

TALiNT Partners’ MD, Ken Brotherston, explains why there is no such this as the ‘new normal’ yet, and how employers have reacted initially.

“For those involved in recruiting and talent acquisition, the task of balancing the strategic and the tactical where cost and time pressures are more extreme than ever will be a career defining challenge.” – Ken Brotherston, MD, TALiNT Partners

 Productive preparation

In a post-COVID-19 world, where productivity will be more important than ever, remote working may provide the solution, both for current and the acquisition of new talent.

“In times gone by, remote working was seen as unproductive and not much trust was traditionally put in employees, but this crisis has really proved that people can work remotely, get their work done, still communicate with colleagues and clients, whilst giving them a better home/work balance.” – Alex Lasry, Chief Marketing Officer, Work180

Furloughing for the future

Whilst the JRS scheme and option of furloughing staff has been a lifeline for many businesses, employers must consider this carefully and sensitively so it doesn’t impact cultural, or lead to legal issues.

“We based our furlough decisions upon two elements: keeping the individuals directly responsible for existing business development, and ensuring each support team (such as finance, IT, HR, operations etc) had enough individual representatives to continue with vital work.” – Danny Brooks, CEO, VHR

Centre-stage marketing

Marketing is a key part of preparing for the upturn post-COVID-19. Together with sales, they can help to improve visibility and increase leads.

“Marketing and sales collaboration has never been more crucial in ensuring that there is consistent communication to clients and candidates. We participate in weekly #smarketing meetings under normal circumstances, but during the crisis we have communicated even more. We have tried to over-communicate to our networks and to provide content that is as pertinent as possible.” – Darren Topping, Business Solutions Director, Lorien

Bring on the brand

Now isn’t the time to be pausing your employer brand. Instead candidates will be looking to this more than ever to make decisions about their next role.

“Protecting your employer brand during this unprecedented period is key; and companies should not underestimate how they act during this time may impact their talent strategy when times return to normal.” – Jacqueline Weller, Associate Director, Ignata

The brand ambassadors

Employer branding isn’t just something to focus on in response to the COVID-19 crisis. Instead, for most businesses, it is a constant focus, which seems them find a variety of ways to invest in it.

“The employer brand is owned by the business and importantly, all our employees. We also have a ‘Voice of the Organization’ cohort of approximately 50 more junior employees who are Employer Brand Ambassadors internally and externally and bring reality and authenticity to the design and delivery of our work.” – Faye Woodhead, Executive Director, Human Resources, MSCI

Driving D&I change

Bev White, CEO of Harvey Nash discusses the value of culture and why it’s up to her to lead diversity and inclusion change from the top.

“Great ideas come from a variety of different minds and backgrounds and thinking. Narrow thinking gives you narrow solutions and frankly a business that’s not sustainable.” – Bev White, CEO, Harvey Nash

You furloughed who? Why?

Our latest PointSix webinars brought together a range of experts in M&A, investment and recruitment tech to share advice on furlough strategies and maximising marketing.

“Leads are the lifeblood of any business, but we need a more targeted approach. Marketing can help to ensure sales are focusing on the right areas, getting the right leads, and sharing content that’s right for candidates.” – Darren Curtis, Enterprise Sales Director, Volcanic

 Emerging successful

At our online Emerging Talent event, our practitioners and sponsors revealed what the younger generations are really looking for from a role today – learning & development, honest branding, and regular communication.

“The consumer and candidate worlds are converging and previously we weren’t in a place to deliver what candidates have come to expect from a best in class recruiter. Candidates are demanding authenticity. They also expect to be able to give and receive meaningful feedback.” – James Gordanifar, Head of Student Recruitment, EY

Mentoring better connections

JC Townend, CEO of LHH UK and Ireland, explains why the company invests in its emerging talent and how mentoring is giving new talent an opportunity to voice their thoughts and opinions.

“The newer generations are more likely to listen to their connections – if someone in their trust pool shares a bad story, it’s going to be even more damaging than something on Glassdoor. And the same is true on the positive side.” – JC Townend, CEO, LHH UK and Ireland

Accessing future success

How are you investing in your staff to prepare for the future, whatever that might look like post-COVID-19? Our contributors share why staff need to be able to upskill and find new ways of learning.

“Through encouraging our furloughed staff to undertake online learning, our primary aim is to take care of their mental health and wellbeing. The motivation, increase in skills and retention of staff is just the result of this.” – Darren Topping, Business Solutions Director, Lorien

Talent pathways

The actions and decisions you make now will affect your ability to attract and retain talent as we come out of the COVID-19 crisis. What will your pandemic legacy be?

“At a time of uncertainty, there is even more of a need to manage the expectations of candidates, keeping them continually up to date on the latest information regarding their role to try to make the process as stress-free and easy as possible.” – Stuart Bell, CEO and Founder, Robertson Bell

Making tech connect

How has the lockdown affected your adoption and uptake of new technologies? Our contributors share what successful tech looks like, and the importance of everyone in the team understanding its relevance.

“There are a number of benefits of video interviewing, which is why they’ve become so popular in recent years (reducing time to hire, improving brand engagement, reduction of candidate no shows, consistent interviewing process etc). That’s not taking into account that high-calibre candidates want to work for cutting edge organisations who embrace technology, not avoid it.” – Craig Morgans, Global Head of Recruitment at IWG

How to win more pitches

At our VSix webinar, HR tech founders shared their insight into working with procurement and how HR leaders can build an investment case for talent tech.

“I want procurement teams to have searched for the best in class, do referencing and measure a track record of success. They also need to assess the financial stability of the vendor. If it’s an early stage business, I would recommend the FD attends the pitch.” – Alex Wilson, former Group HR Director for BT plc and a specialist in organisational transformation

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