Eloise’s April 2022 News – Self-care, Recruitment Market, Easing of Restrictions, Macmillan

Hello and welcome to April,

I imagined this would be a buoyant start to my post with a chat about spring lambs and early BBQs but we’re currently having all seasons in the space of 15 minutes – keeps us on our toes and gets a bit more value from our winter coats, there’s always a positive.

I’m also more aware than usual of how quickly writing my blog comes around. March was one of our long months, yet it was over in a flash. Is it just me or does it always seem to be the end of a month???

This is something I have been looking into, obviously, it’s not always the end of the month but something in my daily process was out of sync for me to be feeling this way. Which led me to…

Don’t press snooze on self-care

When we’re feeling like we’re on the treadmill, we’re spotting signs of stress or anxiety, maybe we’re not sleeping as well as usual, or we’re feeling like the months are running away with us, we need to up the self-care.

It’s not nice to have. It’s not an indulgence. It’s not something that only women or hippies do.

Self-care is essential for all of us, at any age and life stage. Plus, it’ll actually make you more productive at work and home.

What it means for each of us can be something different though.

Here are our Vanilla top 8 self-care tips:

  1. Dedicate 15 minutes a day to you. This won’t take away from your productivity – it will increase it. This could even be getting out of bed 15 minutes earlier instead of hitting snooze.
  2. Be kind to yourself. Acknowledge that you are doing your best.
  3. Be realistic. Are those 100 items on your to-do list likely to get done in 1 day?
  4. Eat right for you. Listen to your body, fuel yourself and eat consciously. Also, drink plenty of water.
  5. Watch how you talk to yourself. Your internal voice needs to speak to yourself how you would speak to a close friend.
  6. Get off social media. So many of us fall into the ‘scroll hole’. If you need to get your fix, set time limits and points in the day for scrolling.
  7. Prioritise yourself. So many of us are guilty about not doing this or feel like we can’t/shouldn’t. You are your number 1 and only you know what you need and how you’re feeling. Listen to yourself.
  8. Sleep! There is a proven link between sleep and job performance, as well as general wellbeing. Forming good sleep habits are so important but when your sleep is out of whack, maybe it’s trying to tell you something. Here’s some more you might want to read: https://hrnews.co.uk/expert-reveals-the-link-between-sleep-and-job-performance/

And a sneaky number 9 that harks back to my previous posts, try and get some kind of exercise or fresh air every day. This could be your 15 minutes of me-time. Maybe it’s a gym class, maybe it’s a cuppa in the garden.

If you’re thinking numbers 1, 7 and sneaky number 9 are impossible with your schedule, look closer at your schedule. That half an hour spent mindlessly looking at Facebook or sitting watching a TV show you’re not really bothered about – they are the pockets of time you can reclaim for yourself.

How the recruitment market is looking

In last month’s recruitment update, I touched on a potential exodus, with people going travelling or requesting sabbaticals. Well, I have started to hear more and more of this. There does seem to be a leaning towards younger people handing their notice in to go travelling for the summer. But, I am also hearing about high level, older workers who have been able to save money during the pandemic, are choosing to prioritise their own wellbeing and families, and are taking a couple of months out to travel.

This poses a risk for businesses but there are not really any tangible solutions to mitigate it. Turning down a sabbatical could cause a short-term workforce gap, but it could also cause a longer-term recruitment risk if that person then hands their notice in.

The REC and KPMG Report on Jobs highlights for March were:

  • Slower rises in permanent placements and temp billings
  • Availability of staff falls at a sharper rate, pay pressures intensify
  • Vacancy growth accelerates

So, the frenzied recruitment surge we were seeing at the beginning of the year has softened slightly but candidate availability is still falling, and starting wages are still rising to combat this.

The key here is to get your candidate offer and package right. But also, to think differently. There is a wealth of talent out there who have taken the decision not to work because it’s not cost-effective. By offering job shares and part-time roles, you stand a better chance of getting the resources you need, even in this market.

Also, the point to remember if you are recruiting in this market is that the shoe is now on the other foot, businesses are not now calling the shots, candidates are!  You need to get better at selling your company and selling the job which is on offer and be able to articulate why your culture would suit the person on interview and why your company is an excellent place to work. 

Candidates have a choice, so it is imperative that you speed up the recruitment process and make the candidate experience a professional and enjoyable one. 

The guiding light for every employer should be this question;

“Why should this candidate work for you?”


Some of our previous articles that may be useful: • What benefits do employees actually want?, • Why are employee benefits important?, • What are common pitfalls with employee benefits?, • How to build a strong employer brand to help recruit the best talent, • Why do employees stay? How to build employee loyalty, • Your Culture Will Make or Break Your Business, • Get your employee benefits package just right

Dealing with the easing of covid-19 restrictions in the workplace

We held our Vanilla HR Huddle webinar last week. The topic was Dealing with the easing of covid-19 restrictions in the workplace and our guest speaker was Keeley Baigent of KsabLAW.

This is a hot topic as we all work out what we can expect/ask from people and what we should do if someone tests positive.

The Government are advising to carry on as normal, but NHS guidelines still advise testing and self-isolating.

Keeley has all the legal advice to help you shape your business policies and guidelines.

Her top tips are:

  • Update or put in place a Covid-19 policy so employees are clear on your expectations covering areas such as
  • Whether you require employees to self-isolate, test or work from home if they have Covid-19
  • Are you paying sick pay if people are isolated?
  • Will an employee being absent for a Covid-19 related reason trigger your absence management procedure?
  • Does your business require mandatory testing?
  • Are your employees required to be vaccinated?
  • Draft your policy and then share and consult with employees to ensure it works for your workplace

You can listen again here to all of Keeley’s legal guidance and access the slides for more support.

Fundraising for Macmillan

Finally, I am fundraising again to raise money to support the amazing work of Macmillan Nurses. On Saturday, 14th May, I will be walking a marathon in memory of my dad, Mike Purvis who died last September, and for all those who have needed or will need the wonderful Macmillan Nurses.

There are a lot of people and causes that need our support and help at the moment, but if this cause does resonate with you or you can spare any pennies, please donate to help Macmillan Cancer Support continue their great work.

Macmillan Cancer Support is one of the largest British charities. They provide specialist health care, information, and financial support to people affected by cancer.

My fundraising link is here: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sheltonknightmarathonwalk

Thank you

That’s us for another month

I hope you have a great April and I’ll be back in touch very soon.


We recruit throughout the East Midlands covering Leicestershire, Northamptonshire, Rutland and the surrounding areas, especially Market Harborough, Lutterworth, Leicester, Corby and Kettering. We help people find their perfect job and match suitable jobseekers with businesses looking to hire the best candidates across our five specialisms – SalesMarketingAccountancy & FinanceHR and Office

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