Eloise’s August 2021 News – Temps, Pingdemic, Ghosting, Olympics

Hello and welcome to August

August! I can’t believe I’m typing August. 2020 was a crazy blur and now here we are going into the second half of Q3 2021 already. Seems mind-blowing.

I hope you and your teams are having a good summer so far.

We’re obviously in peak annual leave-taking season and peak juggling time. I will say though the school summer holiday ‘childcare/work juggle’ does seem less scary now. With lots of us having managed months and months of having to find ways of working from home and parenting/home-schooling, a six-week stint now seems like a breeze.

Temp cover

Remember to get in touch with me or my team if you want to explore using temporary workers this summer.

Maybe you are struggling with covering annual leave, someone has called in sick, or you have increased seasonal business etc. We have a fantastic team of temporary workers who might be the ideal short- or medium-term solution for you.

We can help with anything from a mornings work right up to a few months or more. Get in touch to have a chat through your options.

Back to ‘normal’ or just entering the ‘pingdemic’ phase?

As we all know, the pandemic restrictions were lifted in England on 19th July. This allowed all business to finally fully open. The onus of whether to social distance, limit numbers, wear masks etc was put onto the plates of business owners and the public.

But has much really changed?

There are more people about in towns, and UK holiday destinations are packed. Events and festivals are back. Lots of retail and hospitality venues are keeping many of their guidelines in place and smaller shops are still limiting numbers. The majority of office-based businesses are still opting to work from home or are starting to build up hybrid working patterns.

So not a great deal has changed. It’s nice that there are options for people. Those who are ready for festivals and busy places can jump in, and those who are not can choose not to.

The biggest issue facing businesses now is being called the ‘pingdemic’.

One of my team spent a week in Cornwall in July. She had restaurants booked for 3 evening meals and a breakfast and all, but one venue had to cancel at short notice because they didn’t have enough staff to open. Other venues were operating on very limited menus or just serving drinks because they were struggling for staff.

Retail and hospitality were hit hard in the lockdowns, and you would think now would be their time to make up some of the shortfall. But employees are continually receiving isolation notifications from the NHS app.

How should we all be taking responsibility for the ‘pingdemic’?

The ‘pingdemic’ is causing chaos. Something I take from this, is that it’s all of our responsibility.

Lateral flow testing kits are readily available and are free. They are easy to do at home and you get results within 30 minutes.

As employers I think we should be encouraging our teams to take these tests regularly. I know some of our clients ask employees working from the office to take a test each week. Some are asking for tests to be done after taking annual leave – particularly in the UK where this isn’t mandatory as it is with the process of going abroad.

For those of us who have had both vaccines, it’s almost more important to keep on top of regular testing. Any of us could be carrying the virus, be asymptomatic and be spreading it around.

Do you have processes in place for regular testing? I’d be very keen to hear how you are managing this within your business.

What’s happening in the recruitment market generally?

The KPMG and REC, UK Report on Jobs for June, tells more of what we’ve been hearing over the past few months.

The recruitment market is improving at the fastest pace we have ever seen. The surge in permanent jobs is at its highest since the KPMG survey began in 1997. And temporary job availability is at its highest level for 23 and a half years.

This shows the great confidence businesses have. They are backfilling leavers and growing and this is excellent news for everyone.

As we have experienced for some time now though, the challenge remains candidate availability. Great candidates are being snapped up at a moment’s notice. Lots of workers who have recently been made redundant as furlough schemes come to an end are also choosing to have a summer break or try their hand at self-employment. Which is further impacting available candidate numbers.

Something to be very aware of is the continued rise of starting salaries and temp pay rates. If you’re recruiting and you want the best possible available talent, you are going to need to be competitive in your salary offering.

We’re also seeing more and more jobs being advertised without salaries listed. Instead opting for terms like ‘competitive rates of pay’ or ‘relative to experience’. This is not going to result in a great recruitment campaign. Candidates are put off by roles that don’t state a salary or salary banding. If you don’t want to be overlooked, you need to be transparent.


I remember writing about ‘ghosting’ in one of my blogs a long time ago. Unfortunately, it seems it’s on the rise again now.

Ghosting is where communication goes cold suddenly. You think you’re in chats with someone and then you can’t get hold of them and stop hearing back. Or you contact someone and never hear anything back.

Big employers recruiting for themselves where they receive hundreds of applications for a role have always had a bit of a reputation for ghosting applicants. But overall, this had been getting better.

The other angle that’s hugely on the rise is ghosting by candidates. Particularly with entry and mid-level roles. Good candidates are receiving multiple offers from businesses and are playing them off against each other and often ghost the offers/businesses they don’t want. Some even confirm start dates and either never turn up or pull out at very short notice.

This is all something that is far reduced when working with a recruitment agency because of the increased level of interaction we have with both the employer and the candidate.

But what everyone needs to take from this situation is how it feels to be on the receiving end. To put yourself out there and apply for a role can take lots of time and energy. Equally, recruiting for a role takes a lot of time investment. On either side of the coin people just want to know what’s going on. And that’s a justified and deserved outcome.

Companies that ghost candidates are damaging their employer brand. But also, it’s not good practice to ghost a company, you never know when you might meet them again in the future.

Do you make sure you always reply to every job application?

What can we learn from Olympic athletes?

The 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo started on the 23rd July and will close on 8th August (2021). With 11,238 athletes competing from 206 nations, what can we learn from these incredible humans?

Two main stories have really stuck out for me so far.

The first being the incredible efforts of Georgia TaylorBrown in the women’s triathlon.

12 weeks before competing she was on crutches with a leg injury and had to prove her fitness to even fly to Japan after not being able to compete since September 2020. On race day she was in the lead group on the swim, and until around 200 meters from the end of the bike section, she was still a key part of that group.

Then she got a flat back tyre. In the wet conditions with a flat, she fell behind, barely able to control her bike around the bends. She started the 10k run adrift of the lead pack but incredibly worked her way forward to earn the silver medal.

Her mental strength in the face of injury and then incident during the event is unbelievable. At any point she could have succumbed to negative thoughts and derailed her efforts. She didn’t. She got a silver medal. And she smiled her way through the last 2k of the event.

We can all learn from Georgia. There were multiple times her goal seemed unachievable, too big, unrealistic. She proves that self-belief is as key to achieving goals as talent.

The next stand out athlete for me is Simone Biles.

Simone is the top USA women’s gymnast, heralded as being the ‘greatest of all time’. During the initial stages of the individual all-round competition, she withdrew after just one event stating she needed “to focus on her mental health”.

The pressure on these athletes is immense. From themselves, their trainers, their teams, their countries, sponsors etc. Then also being bestowed with the title of ‘greatest of all time’, must be another heavy weight to bear. Not to mention the added pressure that goes with the Olympics.

For Simone to know she wasn’t well or in the right headspace to give the competition her all. And for her team to back her and support her decision. Is right. It’s how it should be. But it is a huge thing to do. Particularly as she is only 24 years old.

USA Gymnastics released a statement saying “We wholeheartedly support Simone’s decision and applaud her bravery in prioritising her well-being. Her courage shows, yet again, why she is a role model for so many.”

And she really is a role model.

What we can all learn from Simone is that it’s okay to not be okay. And to open up about it, talk about it and take the time out that is needed, is okay. Every single person has limits, and we all need to prioritise our mental health, potentially more than we currently do.

Hats off to the strength both of these incredible athletes have displayed.

That’s it for another month

And with the inspiration of both women front of mind, that’s it for this month’s blog. I hope you have a good August and I’ll be back in touch in September.


PS If you’ve not already done so check out the ‘The State Of Recruitment Report 2021’ to see what impact has COVID-19 had on the recruitment market in the East Midlands?

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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