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How to Nail Recruitment In 2020’s Competitive Market

Spoiler: It's very difficult

Recruiting in 2020 is seriously tough. The national employment rate is sitting at 76.1% - its highest since 1971. Over the last 5-years, the UK employment rate has risen from 72.5% to 76.1%, suggesting recruiting is only getting harder. Great! (eye roll)

UK Employment Rate

UK Employment Rate Rise

Bearing that in mind, why on earth do people think just sticking an ad on Indeed is a sure-fire way to find great talent?

To recruit in today’s market, you need to be savvier. Below, I’ll give you everything you need for a successful recruiting campaign…

1. Create a persona and strategy to attract

You’ve had a management meeting and agreed on your recruitment requirements. You’re excited. I get it. But before you put pen to paper and begin writing a job description, you need to really think about what your ideal candidate looks like. Ask yourself:

  • Why would someone want this job?
  • Who would want this job?
  • Where is this person likely to be working?
  • Where will I find candidates? 

This will give you an outline of the persona you want to attract. Then, determining the channels for attraction is easy. If your persona is a junior events planner who is outgoing and sociable, this person will definitely be on Facebook and probably regularly checking into events. Have a go with a targeted campaign.

If you’re looking for a seasoned business development maestro from the IT industry, your best bet is to headhunt via LinkedIn or ‘Our Team’ pages on competitor/complementary company websites.

In both the above cases, you’ll find far more success from Facebook or LinkedIn than Indeed. Be cautious about where you invest your time and money.

2. Creating an enticing job ad

I don’t care what spiel recruiters give you about “having access to the largest database of job seekers in the UK”, recruitment is marketing. You can have the largest database in the world, but if your job ad is poorly crafted, you won’t get any interest. You have to create an attractive advert with a compelling offer to gain applications. It’s that simple… 

Getting the job description right is tricky. It needs to attract good candidates and repel bad candidates. To do this, I recommend our ‘you will, you won’t’ technique.

Being clear about what you’re looking for goes without saying, e.g.


You will…

…be an outstanding communicator

…have a sound understanding of behavioural economics

…have an interest in how businesses work


This will get the good candidates excited.


Often overlooked, but even more important than the above – be brutally honest about what you’re not looking for. For example:


You won’t…

…be afraid of the phone

…have poor self-esteem

…have a passing interest in work between 9-5

This will scare off the bad candidates. Bullet dodged.


There’s more to it than this, though. Here are our 6 ingredients for the perfect job advert.

3. A straightforward interview process

The market is so competitive right now, you have no time to waste. You can’t faff around with 5-stage interview processes and make candidates jump through hoops. Your interview process should be 3-stages and look like this:

  • Initial telephone screening to determine a candidate’s suitability
  • A 15-minute video interview to determine their personality and presentability without actually having to meet with them (in case you immediately dislike them and then have to spend an hour with them)
  • A face-to-face interview to ask some tough, job-specific questions and to see how they deal with pressure

This is quick, efficient and effective. If you can’t make a decision at this point, the candidate isn’t the right one.

Use a scorecard during the final-stage interview to judge all candidates equally, and so you don’t let your subconscious think the final interviewee is the best, simply because they’re the freshest in your mind. If you don’t have one, use ours.

You need to be fast with feedback after every stage. This will keep candidates engaged and reduce the risk of them getting snapped up by another employer. Aim for 24-hour feedback; this is plenty of time for you to think.

4. Training

Once you’ve found the right candidate and made an offer, you should have a pre-arranged training course for the candidate to complete while working their notice or during their induction. Again, this will keep the candidate engaged and make them feel good about learning something new. It will benefit your business too, as it will help the candidate get up to speed performing quickly. Udemy is best for good training content at a reasonable price.

5. Induction

Most companies get this wrong, and it’s why they fail to retain employees. If you don’t induct your newly appointed employee properly, they will feel lost and not know what to do. They will put it down to the company and leave. A proper induction will make a candidate feel welcome, help them learn the ins and outs of the business and, most importantly, ensure they enjoy it and become invested.

Do you have a proper induction checklist? If not, use ours.

How to Nail Recruitment in 2019

Signing off…

If this doesn’t help you recruit, I don’t know what will. Don’t have time to do all of this? Get in touch and we’ll do it for you!


Get in touch

 Jae Jackson-Loveridge




 Jae Jackson-Loveridge | Director