Sean tells me there’s a big announcement today? Every team has one ay! The one who’s totally obsessed with the update. Being as cool as the other side of the pillow, I just wait for him to update the slack channel for my news. I hope it’s as exciting as the last update when we were told there was no update. Lockdown is getting a bit tedious, especially on a grey and blustery day like today. Adding insult to infection, whenever I speak to clients outside AKL they have completely forgotten that we’re valiantly holding back a swarm of covid ridden numpties from slobbering all their doorknobs and cutlery. I’m not saying the rest of the country should wear bracelets adorned with WWJD? (What Would Jaffas Do?) Being on the ground here I know that the average Aucklander is an avid picnic enthusiast who uses their friends’ toilets at the drop of a hat, a sunny day here, and 1 in 10 back gardens share a likeness to Coachella.

So, it’s not all doom and gloom. Especially on the recruitment front, it seems that everyone is smashing it. By all reports, most agencies have just come off the back of their best month/quarter in recent history. All signs suggest that the recruitment industry will be as busy as Santa’s workshop come December. However, even with the demand in the market, I’ve heard that figurative recruitment boner killer; “we’ll probably look to add to headcount next year” It’s a cute idea that when you’re ready to recruit there will be people ready and waiting, and by cute, I mean naive. It’s as naive as the idea that all recruitment agencies have a magical ‘book’ of grade-A candidates, patiently waiting for your client to represent that glass slipper of a job of theirs. It makes me laugh, the whole “who’s on your books?” notion. I find myself fighting the urge to say that I’ll check my Rolodex and fax it straight over. Like a good candidate in today’s market wouldn’t be placed 10 times over!? As a rule, if you’re waiting until the requirement is essential, you’re already way too late.

The new norm is very much like the old norm; we’re always going to be job-rich and candidate poor in NZ. There was a couple of weeks circa April 2020 when the pendulum swung the other way momentarily. A rare period in recruitment history when you couldn’t find a job to work but your phone was bombarded with calls from candidates. It made me think; what would our market look like if it was switched? If jobs were hard to come by and candidates were plentiful? Consultants would be at the beck and call of their clients with noses matching the same colour of shoes that accompany the blue suit, red tie classic combo. Briefs would be taken without any semblance of reality for what the market is like, just a slick sales pitch that wouldn’t leave a shadow of doubt in the client’s mind you’ll find the candidate with A, B, C, and D.Being raised by television in the 90’s I have to thank a mixture of Tommy Pickle and TJ Detwiler for the direction of my moral compass, back before cartoons were more than half-hour adverts for merchandise. There was an ep of Recess when they visited an adjacent school to be confronted by their doppelgangers, cut to 5:15 for the rollout. They were just like them but slightly different.

Try to comprehend your alternate reality counterpart and how different your approach would be in a candidate-rich market. I think we’d be less emphatic to our candidate’s needs. If we’re having to implicitly side with our clients, we’re more focused on the bottom line. Through the crystal ball, you would see yourself saying to candidates “if you don’t want it, someone else will!” while offering a below-expectation offer. We often bemoan the current dynamic here in NZ but I think that the balance of the market is what makes us great! It’s not a London or a Sydney, it’s not a cutthroat dog eat dog kind of market. We’re focused on relationships and I think that comes from putting the candidate first. So, I know it’s pretty tough out there at the moment but just be thankful you’re able to present a candidate with numerous options rather than orchestrating a revolving auction of candidates like that scene in Taken.

My slack is BLOWING UP! Seems the announcement is now!

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