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Market trends

Hiring in a hot market

For the first time since records began, the number of job vacancies have surpassed the amount of unemployed individuals within the UK. In January to March of this year, we saw unemployment levels fall to 3.7% as the UK experience record number of job vacancies. Across the industry, we’ve seen unprecedented uptake in hiring over the last 18 months as businesses bounce back post-pandemic. Momentum in the Private Equity sector built up from the tail end of 2020, with performance in Q3 nearly doubling in comparison to the year prior to reach $168.5 billion[1]. This led to the sector seeing a return of deal levels that matched 2019 levels in 2021. Mirroring this success is the Investment Banking sector, with overall deal value passing $5 trillion for the first time ever last year[2]. The surge in activity compounded by the vast number of individuals making swift career changes or moving into freelance roles post-pandemic is part of the reason why the professional sector is struggling to find candidates in this hot market, with 34% of UK freelancers beginning their role since 2020 due to flexibility and the perspective it gave[3]. If you’re looking to make a difference to your hiring strategies, our specialists have written a guide on how you can combat this issue and streamline the interview processes to a smoother, faster paced experience for the candidate - with 78.8% of junior candidates advising that the recruitment experience impacts their likelihood to accept at offer stage, getting this right is vital in securing top talent for your business[4].
  • Make sure you are clear on what your employee value proposition is; whilst the candidate needs to ‘sell’ themselves, you also need to ‘sell’ the opportunity.
  • Ensure all those involved in the interview process are aligned on the above. Inconsistent messaging could sow seeds of doubt in a candidate’s mind.
  • Be transparent on the interview process and make sure to communicate early on, keep to a timeline that avoids long delays between rounds. Provide detailed feedback promptly after each interview, whether positive or negative. Although it can be hard to hear, the candidate will appreciate your transparency.
  • Before an offer is made, make sure you have the necessary sign-offs and can produce paperwork swiftly – nobody wants to receive a verbal offer, get excited, but then have to wait two weeks before getting it in writing.
  • Be clear on what is essential and what is preferred on the person specification – if go to granular, you run the risk of narrowing the candidate pool unnecessarily.
As the market remains hot, stringing candidates through a slow process won’t cut it anymore. Businesses must act with pace if they want to hire top talent. If you’re struggling to attract candidates to your business or you’re in need of tightening up your hiring processes, please feel free to reach out to one of our specialist teams today for hiring advice.
  1. Dartmouth Partners Private Equity Hiring Trends Report:
  2. Dartmouth Partners Investment Banking Compensation Report:
  3. 'The Rise of Freelancers During COVID-19', Freelance UK:
  4. Dartmouth Partners Gen Z Hiring & Retention Report:

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