Welcome to October 2016

Welcome to October 2016

Eloise's blog picture

Hello, welcome to October

It’s a sad time of year when we reluctantly wave good bye to summer and start embracing warmer clothing again. At least keeping our sunglasses to hand helps with the transition phase.

The nights are starting to draw in and it’s this time of year I always think about employee safety. Until we moved offices last year, the majority of my team parked in a dark car park, away from the office, near to a quiet and tucked away park entrance. I always advised my team not to walk there alone, to go there in pairs, just in case. It’s all slightly easier and safer in our new office because the car park is right behind our building and our main office overlooks it.

It might seem over the top or even a bit patronising to advise adults to walk in pairs. But as an employer, if anything happened to any of my team when they were coming to or leaving the office, I would feel hugely responsible. It’s always worth having a conversation about safety and just making sure you are doing all you can to keep your team safe.

Gig economy

Okay, so this is something new to keep an eye on. The Guardian and the REC have been reporting that ‘gig work’ will see a huge surge over the next 5 years. So I thought you might like to find out more about it, and explore how it could work for your business.

Gigs used to just be work for musicians, but not anymore. This trend has already swept the US and it’s now becoming more and more popular in the UK. People are looking to move away from 9-5 jobs that pay a fixed salary every month, with paid holidays and benefits, to adopt a more flexible and entrepreneurial approach and make a living from working ‘gigs’.

This is essentially contract work that has been given a new trendy spin and the term ‘gig’ has become a bit of a buzz word. As our digital world makes it easy for people to work from home or indeed anywhere, this has created this entrepreneurial stance that is being taken by employees.

There are lots of employer benefits to gig work. It is generally very cost effective because you are paying someone to deliver a specific piece of work or project, so you have a one off or controlled outlay, rather than on-going employment costs. Plus, gig workers will have their own work space, kit, car, internet etc. Employers can also gain access to high-calibre professionals; people who they might not be able to afford to employ on a permanent basis, but can tap into for short term projects.

At Vanilla, I have a great team working with temporary and contract placements. We have a lot of temp workers on our books covering all sorts of skills and with a variety of experience. So, if gig work is something your business would like to explore further, we can certainly help you.

REC report on the jobs market

Every few months I like to pass on the latest REC report on the jobs market. The key points from the August REC survey are:

  • Permanent appointments had a rise for the first time in three months
  • Temporary placements increased at the fastest pace since May 2016
  • Permanent salary growth has quickened
  • Continuing struggle with candidate availability

Increase in permanent placements

The latest data showed a rise in the volume of permanent staff placements during August, following decreases seen in the preceding two months around the Brexit vote. Anecdotal evidence suggested that some businesses had decided to move ahead with hires that had previously been placed on hold.

Temporary placements increase

Having eased to a ten-month low in July, growth of short-term staff picked up again in August. This is quite probably also linked to the Referendum, with businesses holding off until after the vote.

Permanent salary growth

Starting salaries for successful permanent candidates continued to rise in August. The rate of growth was solid and faster than in July, with businesses citing skills shortages and greater numbers of senior-level placements.

Continuing struggle with candidate availability

Something to watch out for with your own recruitment is the continuing struggle with candidate availability. People to fill permanent jobs has continued to fall in August. The rate of decline has accelerated since July.

There were some reports from the REC survey panel, of people being reluctant to move jobs due to economic uncertainty. As the months go on, this will hopefully ease. The New Year usually delivers a surge in job-seekers and if people have been holding off this year, 2017 might provide us with a bigger surge than usual.

Your strategy

With all of this in mind, if you are recruiting and find someone you think you like, you need to act quickly. They will be hot property and to secure them, you need to be quick and have a great offer. Every month we see more and more counter offers happening, so it’s imperative you offer a great package and work hard to keep them fully engaged with your business and the new role. It’s worth reading our previous blog about how to have a ‘successful on-boarding plan’.

We’re now only 11 weeks away from Christmas, so if you have any temporary or seasonal vacancies coming up, get in touch with us NOW so we can start booking in your required days or weeks: or             01858 898 058.

Also, if you are going to be recruiting in the New Year, now is also the time to start getting those job specs written. Let us know what you have coming up so we can keep an eye out for your perfect recruit.

Have a wonderful October