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  • Ben Jackson

Think your new hire will stay? Think again.

Updated: Sep 29, 2022

When we launched our research with 400 recent job seekers, we never expected to discover that of all of those who secured jobs in the last 6 months of 2020, just 21% claimed that they were looking to stay in the role for the long-term.

In contrast, 33% stated that they were still looking for a better role, while just over 45% said they were waiting to see how the role panned out before deciding whether to look for something better.

So, just to be clear, more than three quarters of all candidates who have started a new role in the last half of 2020 are either actively looking for something better or at best are biding their time.

You can download the full research report here.

What does this mean for employers?

Well, the implications are huge. We are obviously going through tough times, so the jobs market is far from buoyant. But expectations are that, should the vaccine programme in the UK achieve its aims, the economy will rebound quickly later in 2021. If that happens, employees who feel that they are currently under-employed will be actively sourcing better roles quicker than you can say “green shoots”.

It is eminently possible that we will see a huge spike in job applications - and roles available – in late Q3 / Q4 of 2021 (a prediction laden with pandemic-related provisos, of course) and employers who have taken advantage of the high availability of labour over the course of the crisis could risk losing lots of their workforce in a short space of time.

It is equally possible, however, that by then our economy will be unrecognisable from what it was a year ago. How so? Well, take a look at what’s been happening on our high streets in recent months, as online retailers Boohoo have bought the brand names of Debenhams, Dorothy Perkins, Wallis and Burton, while Asos has done the same for Topshop, Topman and Miss Selfridge. Will they take this opportunity to revitalise the struggling high street retail sector, or simply relaunch the brands as online only? This will of course have a huge impact on the number and types of roles they need to hire.

In addition, we are already seeing significant impacts from the end of the Brexit transition period, with exporters of all kinds hit by red tape, additional costs and – in some cases – outright bans. Rumours abound that the UK financial services sector, such a huge contributor to the UK economy, is in decline. And huge question marks remain over the commercial property sector as people and employers realise – finally – that flexible and remote working are very much here to stay.

These are just a few examples of the staggering change happening right now. At the time of writing, it’s impossible to understand exactly what the results of all of this will be for our economy, but one thing’s clear: the world economy will be very different by the time Covid is under control. For the UK, trying to find its way in a brave new world of its own making, it could be the most radical economic transformation since the industrial revolution.

This level of economic and societal change and uncertainty coupled with the fact most people who have found employment recently are thinking very much short-term, spells a time bomb for the HR and Recruitment world.

The message? Don’t be complacent. Now is the time to look after your people, invest in them and improve your internal processes and system to ensure that being employed by you is a seamless, easy experience. If you don’t, you may be looking at an exodus when the world returns to some semblance of normality.

Candidate Experience in a Covid Economy

Download our full research report to uncover more insights into the minds of recent job seekers and find out how to leverage your candidate experience in a world where change is the only constant.

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