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A Fresh Approach To Talent Acquisition

August 13, 2018

The latest quarterly Labour Market Outlook from the CIPD intimates that labour and skills shortages are having an impact on recruitment, with employers reporting a significant drop in both the quantity and the suitability of candidates.

As with many challenges facing us today this is, in part, being blamed on the ‘Brexit factor’, with falling numbers of EU nationals entering the UK.

However, this is not the whole story.

Employers told the CIPD that while demand for staff remains strong, supply is way off the pace, and the constriction of the labour market is impacting on recruitment. When compared with summer of last year, the number of applications per vacancy has plummeted, across the board.

To put this in figures, the average number of applications made for medium-skilled vacancies this year has been 10, compared with 19 last year. Organisations questioned by the CIPD said that the proportion of what they deemed to be ‘hard to fill' vacancies, had increased by 10% in just three months.

Make no mistake, this is a serious problem - there are obvious knock-on effects in terms of productivity and bottom line. So what can employers do to mitigate the effects of this trend?

How about taking a fresh approach to talent acquisition by considering a resource that remains relatively untapped? If a business is looking for exceptional engineers, logisticians, project managers, medics, chefs, or exponents of any number of other disciplines, they need look no further than veterans of the Army, Royal Navy, RAF or Marines.

FRS Managing Director Graham Brown, one of the UK’s foremost advocates for the employment of ex-military personnel, says: “In addition to their highly sought-after vocational skills, ex-Service people are blessed with an extensive set of transferrable 'soft' skills. Qualities such as communication, organisation, leadership, problem solving, and resilience, are cornerstones of the military make up.”

Aside from the training, the experience and the much-envied skills, the ex-Forces candidate market has something else to recommend it: the outlow of people from military to civilian employment isn’t subject to the same fluctuations that plague other sectors. Every year, without fail, thousands upon thousands of men and women leave the Services eager to apply their considerable talents to roles within Civvy Street.

The lesson here is clear – look beyond the traditional routes to recruiting quality staff, and you will find yourself richly rewarded.


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