It's a buyers market...

...and if they don’t like what they are buying then they will do it themselves...  this is what I think is increasingly the view of employers who are looking to recruit people into post-recession businesses. We all know the story.  The past was good (or at least from a recruiters point of view) lots of candidates, lots of roles, keep firing until something sticks.  True consultancy was really another word for retained search and even then whilst it wasn’t a numbers game it was all about a take it or leave it approach to the client.

Zoom forward to 2010 and things are different.  Clients are cautious.  It’s been a while since some of them saw the recruitment consultants horse pull up outside and they don’t like what they see.  Clients want Value, market insight and to be treated like the fee paying entity they are.

For the consultant things are looking worse their clients have been looking out how to do things themselves, they are more technically able and sensitive to quality.  Every client has a ‘we found the candidate on linkedin and it cost us nothing’ story to tell and whilst the big employers know it is not is as simple as that but it has made them think about how to engage with candidates.  Want more bad news?  Well those same employers are directly employing people to support them.  People like me .

I have spoken about this at length with a business partner of mine and we are stuck.  I have decided that the employer side of the fence is for me, he has decided that the external side is for him.  What we both agree on though is that either side of the fence we face big challenges.  I have to secure a leadership role to add value, he has to offer so much more than just filling the job, he has to offer something measurably different.

In both cases we face a candidates who no longer respond to job adverts, they want to connect through linkedin or facebook.  They understand the commercial drivers of fill the job recruiters and they are slowly cutting them out - choosing their employer of choice and engaging directly.  As recruiters we need to find new pathways to attract those candidates, get creative not just follow the herd.

So there’s the challenge - how do we engage with multiple buyers who are suddenly questioning whether they want to buy things or do it themselves.  If you think about it, it’s not such a daft idea, i’m up for it even though I know I will earn less, swapping that for career and achievement and I am not alone and if you look at other industries such as retail it has been going on for years as retailers move up the value chain buying at source or buying their own means of production.

It’s not too late but time is ticking on.

about martin dangerfield

My current assignment has ended and I am available again for the price of a coffee through to full employment.  My recruitment experience is supported by my years as a people manager, managing teams up to 45 people and the management of strategic clients and the associated P&L’s.

I am available to work across EMEA and offer a flexible commercial engagement model.

Email or call me on +44161.955.3647.