Candidates take the lead

Johnson Underwood

1st February 2018

Recruitment & Training

Johnson Underwood

THIS year will be a candidate-led employment market, according to Johnson Underwood, the recruitment specialists based in Northampton.

Entering their 28th year of business, they are experts in navigating a candidate-driven market; what you can do to attract the skilled candidates you need to progress your business and improve productivity; how you retain the staff you already have in your business and what to do if your staff get headhunted.

Johnson Underwood recommends the following:

* Undertake meaningful appraisals with your employees, find out what their plans are, are you able to accommodate?

* Training is often a win-win situation; support training with time and investment.

* Ensure you have robust procedures in place; should you lose an employee integral to your business, at least you know what they have been doing for you. Remember, when an individual serves notice, you will achieve the first 50 per cent of their notice period where they are focused, whilst the other 50 per cent, they are just counting the days to when they leave.

* Undertake exit interviews, find out what was their key motivator, why have they chosen to leave?

* Recruit skilled staff to replace them. Salaries will have been discussed in the team, be careful of the salary with which you employ someone new. It will be discovered! Perhaps consider - do you need to replace like for like? Can you be more flexible with hours/duties? What are your options?

* Engage with staff; perhaps discuss putting together, with everyone's input, a 12-month bonus scheme for all, based on increased productivity and profitability.

* Be aware of headhunting calls - the grass is always greener, but more often than not it does not work out. Drill down what your employee has been offered and consider what they have and what you can offer. If a candidate is comfortable in a role, and therefore does not really want to leave, you may be able retain them, setting new goals to achieve and ongoing personal development opportunities.

* There is little point in engaging in a salary war unless, of course, you have not been paying market rates. You often retain a member of staff by paying more, but salary is not always the main reason staff want to leave.

Visit the Johnson Underwood website for information relating to local salaries, read the #JUBlog and #JUAskCory features and find out more about the services available and ways to get in touch at

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Johnson Underwood