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Combatting the talent shortage

Posted by Paul Clutton on 11/08/2021


With the Bank of England recently reporting that the economy is well on the way to recovery, recruitment activity is now exceeding pre-pandemic levels. 

Due to increased demand, most CEOs have highlighted skills shortages as being a tangible risk to their growth and future success. As a result, organisations can no longer expect talent to come to them.

The job of creating and delivering an effective talent attraction strategy does not lie purely in the hands of the HR team. Leadership teams need to understand that the recruitment approach needs to be addressed by all involved in the interview process in order to gain the best talent.

The question is, how can you better prepare yourself to attract talent?

Ask yourself:

  • How confident are you that your recruitment strategy and process is up to scratch?
  • How strong is your employer brand and is this clearly demonstrated during the recruitment process?


The good, the bad and the ugly!

Good process:

  • Remembering that the interview is a two-way process; as much for candidates to assess the suitability of the role and organisation for their aspirations as it is for the client to decide upon the candidate’s fit for the role
  • Selling the company, culture and what the long-term opportunities are to the candidate
  • Collaborative hiring - ensuring that peers as well as HR and hiring managers are involved in the recruitment process to ensure a broader view and hopefully from a more diverse demographic
  • Speed of response and prompt, detailed interview feedback during the process
  • Partnering with a trusted specialist agency in order to highlight ‘passive’ job seekers; those high-performers who are not currently monitoring job adverts but who may be open to considering great opportunities
  • Ensuring that you interview with the employer brand and values in mind. Close alignment should increase talent retention.


Bad process:

  • ‘Grilling’ of candidates in order to weed out the weakest. This isn’t the SAS!!
  • Assuming that you hold all of the power in the decision making process. 
  • Not ‘selling’ your business and the opportunity to a potential employee. If you don’t, the competition will be!
  • Slow process. Candidates are often in two or more processes at the same time and so if you are slow, you may lose out purely due to timeframes


...and the ugly!:

  • The use of strange questions when interviewing. When asked “If you were a colour, what would you be?”, does it really help in your decision making if a person says red or yellow?
  • Not providing any feedback or continued communication if there is to be a short delay in the process. Poor candidate interview experience can lead to a bad reputation in the market and will deter candidates from re-applying for other positions in the future 

In addition to addressing the recruitment process, your organisation can work with a trusted agency to provide proactive sourcing; the act of identifying, pipelining and engaging with candidates before a job is even available, based upon the future needs of the business.


In summary

The ‘War for Talent’ is not likely to lessen any time soon but by adapting to the skills shortage and being agile and prepared, employers can continue to build winning teams and secure the very best talent available.


If you are looking to hire in your team and need a specialist recruitment partner to support you, or would like to discuss career objectives or job opportunities, please contact us at


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