Has the pandemic managed to cover up, to some extent, the negative impact of Brexit on the employment market?

July 23, 2021

July 2021 and what crazy weather we are having in Edinburgh, keeps us on our toes if nothing else! But this isn’t a weather blog.

So, a July blog, and transparency regarding the current market place is going to be the theme running through this months edition, any thoughts regarding what you think the reasons for what I am about to outline will be very welcome.

Companies are slowly starting to recruit again, tentatively, but they are starting so – that’s good and also encouraging after “that year!”.

Experienced office personnel are slow to respond to adverts at present, and we can’t totally put our fingers on the reasons why. As a small yet established recruitment agency, we have found over the years that we are typical of what is happening in the market place, and the “word on the ground” is definitely suggesting a shortage of experienced office personnel, also confirmed when we have spoken with others in the profession. Media coverage has highlighted the shortage of hospitality staff, but not office staff.

We continue to receive responses to adverts from candidates who have no relevant office or industry experience, that’s been standard for many years for a lot of recruiting managers and agencies, and although sometimes challenging to explain to i.e. a builder / care worker professional / electronics student why the full time PA post is not appropriate, we are used to this. This still doesn’t disguise the fact that experienced office individuals, looking for their next opportunity, are slow to come forward.

We are all aware the economic impact of the Pandemic has resulted in thousands of redundancies, furlough continuing until September 21, offices not fully open yet, people working from home (and that this may continue). But are we aware of what impact Brexit is having, resulting in many people leaving the UK, in their thousands, for good ? Settlement status is now required by many individuals going forward, and sponsorship licences recommended to Companies recruiting for specific professions.

When Brexit happened did emigration to Australia, Canada and New Zealand take place for certain professionals, think it used to be called a brain drain?  

Has the pandemic managed to cover up, to some extent, the negative impact of Brexit on the employment market?

So – everything put together seems to have culminated in a lower availability of experienced office personnel looking for employment.

But ….how does it all actually fit together?

Is this all just a bloomin mess? Is the negative impact on i.e. the employment market, because of Brexit, being hidden behind the Pandemic? As I am not an Economist – it is difficult to piece it all together, but perhaps you can?

Has society’s demographic changed totally? I don’t know! 

It feels a bit brave to put the above out there as we certainly do not want to suggest that the cupboard is totally empty, we are representing many excellent office personnel, and still need to hear from our clients and to be allowed the opportunity to assist, and will continue to do everything in our power to find the illusive candidate, with integrity and efficiency.

So, what we need going forward are decisive (make decisions quickly!)  open minded (literally that!) fast moving (move quickly!) clients, we are fortunate that most of ours are, but sometimes time can pass and if there is too much time spent thinking about a CV, or a candidate, then the company may genuinely miss out.

It may be time to review salaries and benefit packages  for office support personnel, key to the success of any company.

This is in no way meant as a sales pitch but more of a pretty brave reality check if you are recruiting either directly, or through a recruitment agency – of course preferably through Time Recruitment. We look forward to hearing  some of your thoughts too.


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