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2010 hiring trends survey highlights

2010 hiring trends survey highlights new challenges for employers
The numbers of job openings is up, but the quality of applicants is mixed, which means recruiters are going to play a vital role in finding the cream of the crop. Thats according to a new market report from executive PA and office support recruiter, Crone Corkill .
 Our findings suggest that while companies are definitely hiring again, there are still skill shortages in significant areas, said Lee Dempster, Director of Crone Corkill.  Our report seems to strongly indicate that attracting, and then retaining and engaging the very best talent are likely to be the key challenges ahead.
 While there is no doubt that we have seen a marked upturn in the numbers of vacancies, there is still a perception among some employers, that there are a large number of available candidates on the market arguably giving more choice, adds Dempster. However, this is often a case of quantity over quality and the very best candidates are securing three or four interviews a week. Salaries have remained flat over the last few months but are beginning to recover and we have seen a return to counter offers and bidding wars. Additionally, we are finding that employers with lengthy hiring processes are losing out as faster competitors snap up the best candidates.
When asked about top recruitment challenges over the next six months, almost 30% of employers identified retention as a key issue. Although many people felt lucky to keep their jobs during the credit crunch, it now looks like employers failing to look after those left behind could find themselves having to replace unhappy employees who may vote with their feet as the job market lifts, added Dempster. Employers will lose good people unless they have a plan to make staying a positive choice.
Crone Corkill looked at how companies plan to retain and engage top talent and found that paying additional performance or target related bonuses was seen as the main retention strategy, with nearly a third of surveyed employers considering this. Over a quarter believe that job satisfaction can be improved by revamping roles, with coaching and training, and increases in base salary being considered by around a fifth of respondents. Flexible working, career breaks or sabbaticals, and increases in holiday allowances were also considered but, perhaps surprisingly, only 3% of companies questioned are including these in their retention strategy.
 Our survey indicates that the signs of recovery are there and growing. However, the notion that there are a lot of skilled candidates around is flawed, so there is perhaps a need to convince employers theyre no longer in a buyers market. The fact that companies are looking for talented office support staff signals an upturn in business activity generally. This focus on talent attraction and retention points to a renewed confidence in the market, concluded Dempster.


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