There’s no doubt that the past few years have been shaky - for all industries, not just recruitment. A new focus from a government able to exercise greater freedom when it comes to the implementation of their policies compels us to consider: what can we expect to see in the near future?

According to the Association of Recruitment Consultancies (ARC), a few changes look to be on the horizon…

• A National Minimum Wage increase
Proposed is an increase of the NMW, to approximately £8, by 2020, something that will no doubt please those campaigning for the Living Wage. However, over the government’s five-year term, this amounts to an annual increase of 4%, which is only marginally more than the 3% decided in the October 2014 review.

• Help to create two million new jobs
An initiative that sounds like a definite headline grabber, the government’s pledge to reduce unemployment is admirable but is largely without plan or strategy. Just where will these two million jobs come from?

• A change to employees’ contractual terms to protect more workers

The promise to revamp zero hours’ contracts has been longstanding, and focuses on the abolition of the exclusivity clauses such contracts contain. A welcome move for lower paid workers.

• Tougher approach towards those employing illegal workers and exploitation
Regulation is expected to be tightened, to try and control the illegal labour market. The heavier hand will be felt by employers using migrant workers as ‘slave labour’, rather than penalising workers themselves.

• Larger companies to show transparency, in respect to pay and gender
In an attempt to make the workplace more equal, and to bring women’s pay in line with their male counterparts, organisations employing more than 250 people will be encouraged to publish salary figures.

• Paid leave for volunteers
A curved ball, but one that seems to be part of the drive towards greater community responsibility and care. Employees from large organisations and the public sector would be entitled to three days of paid leave to carry out voluntary work in their community.

• Rescinding the ban on agency workers filling in for employees on strike
A very interesting proposal for recruitment agencies, who are currently unable to supply staff in such circumstances. However, though this may be good for agencies’ bottom lines, the negative PR associated with such a move may cancel out short-term financial boosts.

• A referendum on Britain’s membership of the EU
Never far from the headlines this topic, a referendum is expected as early as 2017. This may be good news for agencies, concerning the restrictions EU directives currently uphold; however, some argue that trade with Europe may be affected. The sheer amount of legislation that may change if Britain leaves the EU will take some time to adjust to.

There’s no guarantee that the pledges made during an election campaign will play out, and these forecasts may simply remain concepts and proposals. One thing is certain, though: nothing ever stays the same – change is on the cards.

Fast Recruitment Websites build high quality websites for UK recruitment agencies without the inflated price tag. We specialise in helping start-up agencies get online fast, and established agencies to enjoy the benefits of a professional site without the need for excessive capital investment. Call us on 01302 288591 or email us via info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.co.uk.
Original article: http://www.arc-org.net/news/the-next-5-years-what-can-we-expect/

04 Jun 2015

A weighty issue!

A new study by CareerBuilder shows that the workplace and slim waistlines are not compatible – that those looking to lose weight have fat chance of doing so.

More than a thousand people were surveyed; 41% admitted that they’d put on weight since they moved to their current jobs, with 18% of those gaining more than ten pounds. Said Scott Helmes, Managing Director of CareerBuilder UK: “Work-related stress, lack of sleep and overly packed schedules can often get in the way of healthy eating and exercise habits. Poor physical health can also take a toll on mental health and work quality, so it’s important for workers to stay active, even if it just means taking small breaks throughout the day to walk around or stretch.”

It probably doesn’t take a genius to work out that sedentary roles cause more weight gain than jobs that require some level of manual activity. Though continually sitting at a desk was the major obstacle to losing weight, the survey showed more reasons why workers find it hard to shed the pounds.

The temptation of the office biscuit tin was a contender (28%), as were workplace celebrations, snacking and ‘happy hours’. The strain and stress of the role itself was also a contributory factor as to why workers felt they had no energy left for exercising before or after work. 32% claimed stress was one reason they ate more, which compounded the effect on their weight. This wasn’t a gender issue, either – the same amount of men and women reported feeling overweight.

Despite these challenges, the survey found that over two-thirds of workers regularly exercised. Scott Helmes also gave his own tips to those finding it hard to fit in exercise as part of their daily routine:

  • Put exercising in your calendar: plan ahead and make time for it
  • Put more activity into your daily routine: for example, Park further away from the entrance to your work premises, take the stairs instead of the lift, get off the bus/train a stop earlier, etc.
  • Ban the fizzy drinks from your desk: drink water or green tea
  • Bring a healthy lunch to work: it takes just a little effort each morning, but will prove much kinder to your waistline than the junk food options commonly chosen when time is sparse
  • Keep healthy snacks in your desk: the biscuit tin will be less of a temptation, and you’ll never feel hungry

Though the survey showed that the onus of managing their weight is on the individual, it was apparent that few employers supported employees’ healthy diets and exercise, with a lack of gym passes, canteens stocking nutritious food, or other wellbeing perks, for example. 41% of those surveyed said they’d take advantage of such benefits if they were introduced.

Fast Recruitment Websites is rapidly becoming the UK's leading low-cost recruitment website supplier. For a no obligation informal chat about your website design needs, contact us on 01302 288591 or info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.co.uk.

Social media is undoubtedly a valuable tool for agencies, which allows them to get right under candidates' and clients' noses. But has the fascination, if ever it was there, worn off?

Social media is still a relatively new phenomenon, and it's probably inconceivable that something still being resisted by many companies and industries can appear to be 'on the way out'. Facebook, for example, has more over-fifties using it than the hip, happening generation it's purportedly aimed at.

LinkedIn has always been recognised as a professional platform, for business users only, with the social element focused on widening our networks and contact base, to increase opportunities and showcase our skills and expertise. Recruiters may still run searches daily, but if the audience has moved off, this is bound to have an effect.

It's important to remember the routines and habits of candidates using the site. For example, far fewer numbers search LinkedIn between recruiters' office hours; the main time the site is accessed by job-seekers is Sunday evening, between 7pm and 10pm, when the dreaded 'Monday morning feeling' starts to kick in for those dissatisfied with their jobs. For those happy in their roles, it's likely they use it sporadically, if at all, and it's therefore fair to assume that their professional details on the social media site are out of date.

Keyword searches may not be as effective as they could be on LinkedIn, as few candidates pen their summary with searchable text in mind. There currently seems a fashion to slim down, or strip, profiles to make them more concise, rendering keyword searches even harder.

Because candidates may not be regular users of LinkedIn, even if they are in the process of searching for a role, it's hard to use the platform when a fast response is needed. It's perhaps more appropriate, therefore, to see LinkedIn as a longer-term tool, to build relationships with employees and clients alike.

Though a professional website, recruiters are sometimes viewed with suspicion when trying to connect with individuals on LinkedIn. InMails, mass messages and impersonal approaches are not the way to combat this; approach and talk to someone just as if introducing yourself in person. The good news is that referrals occur naturally and effectively on this social platform.

The groups both parties join on LinkedIn typically differ: recruiters tend to gravitate towards industry bodies, whilst candidates link up with peers and groups that align with their personal interests.

LinkedIn is still one of the main online tools for recruiters, and with a little shift in strategy and mind-set, there's no reason why this can't continue.

The greatest online tool for any recruitment agency is their website. Is yours still relevant, attractive, and fully functional in today's fast-paced, omni-channel world? Call Fast Recruitment Websites for a friendly chat about your current and future website design needs, on 01302 288591, or email us via info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.com.

Well, strategy and efficient systems are a must. No order or organisation, and you could find yourself missing out on key talent as you try and make sense of paperwork, appointments and candidates' identities. Understanding the selection criteria of all roles is essential; it's easy to overlook crucial details when there are so many roles to fill. Often, hiring is carried out locally, which can prove a sparse hunting ground for top-level managers or supervisors.

A new warehouse or headquarters, as a result of expansion, can be a lucrative project for any agency. No one is suggesting it's an easy, task however, so how can you make the volume recruitment process more manageable?

Have an effective initial screening process

The amount of applications may run into the hundreds or thousands, so an initial 'sweep' of the candidates can help weed out those less appropriate for the culture of the company. Create a 'perfect' candidate profile, regardless of role, and use this as a measuring stick to compare every application against. Plenty will fall short in one area or another, and can be quickly discarded. The better you plan for and envisage the type of person you're looking for, the easier the process will be.

Detail, detail, detail

Meticulously explain the responsibilities and expectations of the relevant role to the candidates that remain; in some cases, it may not be what that job-seeker imagined. Those less committed will naturally fall by the wayside as a result.

Use tools and tests

It's conceivable that you still have a large number of what appear generally appropriate candidates at this stage. More weeding out is needed; psychometric or competency-based tests will separate those with the most suitable skills and qualities.

Efficiency

Collecting references and certifications as part of the necessary pre-employment checks and administration can be time-consuming when there's a high volume of employees. Again, plan for this, and put as many systems in place as necessary, to make the whole process methodical and timely.

Don't create a cattle market

Though you may be tasked with finding 500 suitable and qualified candidates, for example, it remains a personal, challenging process to the individual job-seeker – something that shouldn't be forgotten. Remain in contact with candidates after the offer letters have been sent, right up until work commences (and afterwards, ideally); there's still room for people to change their minds or to be offered other roles elsewhere.

Make the process a positive one at every stage, and keep all candidates engaged; though they may not be suitable in this instance, you can still foster relationships with the 'unsuccessfuls', who may turn out to be perfect for alternative roles with your other clients. It may also prove a godsend to create a 'close runner up' pool of candidates; there's often a natural loss of employees within the first few months of a new store/warehouse/headquarters, until things settle down.

Seeking input from recruitment professionals throughout the development process has enabled Fast Recruitment Websites to genuinely tailor the product to your needs. Our aim is to provide a reliable, affordable solution to all independent recruitment agencies, however large or small. Call us on 01302 288591 or contact us at info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.com.

If you want your website and job vacancies to be listed in Google's mobile search results after 21st April, you might want to read this.
 
On 21st April 2015, Google is expected to make updates that will have a significant impact onmobilesearch results worldwide formobilesearchers. 
 
The update is intended to improve rankings for sites that provide amobile-friendlyexperience to searchers onmobiledevices, and, by association, may demote sites that do not.
 
Note that the mobile-friendly update only affects mobile search results - i.e. searches from smartphones and tablets - not searches conducted on a desktop or laptop computer.
 
Google does offer a simple tool to check if your site is mobile friendly. Please see https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly
 
For the last 12 months, we have been building all of our new sites using responsive design to ensure they are mobile friendly meaning new customers can come to us in confidence. 
 
If your website does not meet Google's requirements, get in touch and we will help you avoid losing traffic. 
 
 
If you want to discuss your situation with an expert now, call us on 01302 247 010.

#careers #jobs #recruiting #dotheyevenwork

There's little doubt that social media is an important tool in a recruitment agency's box. With a wealth of platforms, varying in popularity and audience size, social media is invaluable when it comes to getting in-front of people.

But because these online networks are so ingrained in our daily lives, and from the sheer number of people using them, how can any Tweet, post or update ever be more than just noise?

The humble hashtag is an effective filter. Add #jobs after a vacancy posting, though necessary, and you're really just stating the obvious. By also adding #engineering (or other sector), however, you define and filter your post's audience and amplify its reach to people outside your network. Given that many people use hashtags as a search tool, it makes sense to include them in-front of your key words.

Twitter statistics show that posts with hashtags see double the engagement, and 40% are retweeted. Instagram, Google+ and Facebook posts also fare better with hashtags. The cardinal (unwritten) rule, however, is to use them wisely - add more than two in any post or Tweet and you advertise your naivety of social media etiquette to the world.

With regards to your agency's marketing and branding, hashtags are also useful. Reporting on specific industry developments with a relevant 'identifying' hashtag can show an organisation with its finger on the pulse, and an influencer people should follow.

Hashtags are not a feature of Linkedin, which is arguably a valuable social media platform when it comes to job hunting. They were part of the relationship Linkedin had with Twitter, but following their 'divorce' in 2012, they disappeared. Hashtags can still be included within the body of a published post on Linkedin, and as LI is one place you wouldn't expect to see one, perhaps this is more reason to use them, as part of your agency's content marketing initiatives.

Thinking of the searches job-hunting candidates employ online, here are the top 5 hashtags (as of late 2014):

#jobs #JobOpening #JobOpportunity

#Hiring #NowHiring

#Freelance – Enjoying a surge in popularity, freelancers are in demand as employers adapt to flexible ways of working

#MarketingJobs – 'Marketing' could be swapped for any industry or specific job role; all fields have their own community of recruiters

#JobTips – A popular search term with jobseekers. Add this to tip sheets, resources or relevant blog posts you publish, and become a trusted adviser and an organisation to turn to with anyone looking for work in your area or specialism.

Location-based hashtags can help you find your audience, and are often retweeted by organisations and bodies in the same district. Using hashtags in real time, at industry events for example, can help others follow if they're not able to attend, and further cements your expertise. There are even custom hashtags for recruiters, such as #JobHour, that encourage those hiring to promote their vacancies, and which also give jobseekers a specific time to 'tune in'.

With statistics such as 74% of companies filling vacancies via social media, and 54% using Twitter as a recruitment tool, learning the online tricks of the trade is crucial. Hashtags can boost the prominence of a posting, provided it's appropriate and targeted, and help those searching for a specific vacancy to find what they're looking for. #Cool

Fast Recruitment Websites is a leading provider of low cost, high quality recruitment website design services. Our recruitment website software is constantly evolving, based on customer feedback, and offers one of the most comprehensive, competitively priced solutions on the market. Call us now to arrange a demo, on 01302 288 591.

A new survey by recruitment company Adecco has brought to light what appears to be a contributory element to the current youth unemployment crisis.
Figures show a worrying gap between the amount of jobs applied for, and the number of interviews subsequently secured, by those aged 16-24. On average, job seekers in this age group applied for eleven jobs during the last twelve months but were invited to interview only twice. One in ten didn't secure an interview at all.

16-24 year olds in education assume their job-hunting activity will take around six months before they land a full-time role. However, the survey showed this belief was unfounded, and that it takes far longer. One of the problems, according to Adecco, is that few youngsters find the time or inclination to maximise practical experience whilst embroiled in their studies.

With a quarter of 16-19 year olds having never even applied for a job, Adecco's study points to a proportion of young people who lack job-hunting knowledge and skills. Given that a quarter of young people report a distinct lack of career advice and education within school, those approaching recruitment agencies may desperately need guidance of this kind to gain full-time employment.

Says Alex Fleming, Managing Director of Adecco, "Our research shows that young people are not hitting the ground running when leaving school or university. Whilst they might feel confident in their studies, they do not feel they have the experience required to actually secure a job."

Barclays LifeSkills head, Kirstie Mackey, agrees. She said, "We know many young people already have plenty of key skills; they just need support to understand how to put them into practice."

Can recruitment agencies be the bridge between businesses looking to inject new blood into their organisations and this sea of young talent that lacks 'work readiness'?

Tom Hadley, REC Director of Policy and Professional Services, believes so. He says, "Youth unemployment is one of the biggest issues this country faces. Agencies can play an active role in helping young jobseekers. Recruiters, as experts in their local labour markets, are perfectly placed to reach out to the next generation of workers and reduce local youth employment. They can make a real difference to the lives of young people."

Fast Recruitment Websites solely provide professional websites to UK recruitment agencies without the inflated price tag. We specialise in helping start-up agencies get online fast and established agencies to enjoy the benefits of a professional site without the need for excessive capital investment. Call us on 01302 288591 for a friendly, no obligation chat about your needs.

Is your dream to be an international playboy, top footballer, supermodel or successful pop star? According to Glassdoor, the best jobs in reality are much less exciting.
Their list, based on career opportunities, potential salary, and the number of job openings, is the über-normal 'marketing manager'. Sounding even less likely to be the role everyone desires, Glassdoor lists 'finance director' at number two.

Perhaps the most manual role featured in their top ten is at number three: 'mechanical engineer'. Here's the rest:

4. Sales manager
5. Business analyst
6. IT manager
7. Civil engineer
8. Product manager
9. Lawyer
10. Software engineer

YouGov conducted similar research, with interesting results. From their survey, the top three jobs most coveted by the UK population are: 1) author (60%); 2) librarian (54%); and an academic (51%). It would seem from this that the majority of us are book lovers, or we're certainly keen to continually learn. Correlation between YouGov's poll and Glassdoor's findings shows that 'lawyer' is the only role to appear in both top ten lists.

Gender stereotypes were more likely to be confirmed than diminished in YouGov's survey – men were more likely to aspire to be astronauts and train drivers than interior designers or librarians, the latter preferred predominantly by women.

As to what makes 'the best job' has been the subject of various studies. One theory suggests that there are three separate elements that, when combined, make a role particularly covetable.

1) Matches our skills: The best roles are those that we're confident we can carry out, but which also challenge us at the same time.
2) Makes a difference: We don't have to be working for Greenpeace to believe we're having some sort of impact. Believing that what we do, day to day, is valued, is crucial.
3) Palatable colleagues: Working for a boss that we respect, and with colleagues we like, makes any job more enjoyable. A good environment makes for happier employees.

So there you have it. No water-slide testers or sex toy quality controllers in sight. Though many of us may feel a slight mood dip each Monday morning, it's quite possible that we're already working in our 'dream job'.

Fast Recruitment Websites is rapidly becoming the UK's leading low-cost recruitment website supplier. For a no obligation informal chat about your website design needs, contact us on 01302 288591 or info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.co.uk.

A new survey from finance company Pay4Later has shown that 23% of the population are not just looking to change their company, but to change their job altogether, through retraining. A huge number, particularly when you realise this represents 10.9 million people.

The commitment from those looking to learn new skills and take control of their career was high, with over half prepared to fund any associated costs themselves.

The sector within which most were hoping to retrain was healthcare, with some 22% of health workers surveyed – representing 2.34 million – planning such a move within the next three years. Compare that with employees from the beauty industry – only 2%, 229,000, felt that they wanted a complete change.

Education was another prominent sector; 18% of teaching staff plan to retrain, whilst 12% of those working in the financial sector are keen to do the same.

Geographically, it's perhaps no surprise to learn that 38% of Londoners crave new skills and different opportunities. Those living in Wales, according to the survey, appeared to be the most settled, with only 16% looking at retraining opportunities.

Looking at the ages of those making plans to retrain, 18-24 year olds were the most likely, with just under half of those interviewed planning a new career in a different industry. We could assume that this is down to the career longevity this age group has before them, compared with older employees more likely to be constrained by such as financial responsibilities that demand consistency and stability. However, considering 39% of 35-44 year olds also stated plans to retrain, this doesn't seem to be the case.

It isn't always job progression that sees people retrain, some employees swap roles/industries to gain a better work/life balance, or for the chance to alter their working pattern – to work from home, for example. Whatever the reason, as an agency, gathering information that details all suitable retraining opportunities and facilities in your locality will further help you steer your candidates in their next move.

Fast Recruitment Websites build high quality websites for UK recruitment agencies without the inflated price tag. We specialise in helping start-up agencies get online fast, and established agencies to enjoy the benefits of a professional site without the need for excessive capital investment. Call us on 01302 288591 or email us via info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.co.uk.

Source: http://www.onrec.com/news/statistics-and-trends/to-109-million-people-plan-to-retrain-for-new-jobs

There are some that say the economy is still shaky, and others – mostly politicians – that tell us the economy is definitely on the up. Stability is increasing, jobs are everywhere, business is booming, so they say. So does this mean that one subject firmly 'parked' for almost a decade will finally be back on the table?

Pay rises are rarely expected in today's market. But new research shows that, currently, one in three workers would consider moving jobs if a pay increase wasn't somewhere to be found on the horizon.

A report by Glassdoor reveals that 39% of those surveyed will look for a new job if they don't receive an increase in their pay within the next year, which equates to approximately 12 million people. With statistics quoting the average cost of a vacancy as £30,000, that's one heck of a headache for employers – surely, facing such an outlay for replacing these members of staff, a fair and conservative increment seems like a good business move?

How much is 'fair'?

What an employee expects and what their employer can afford to pay, or will consider paying, could be poles apart. Glassdoor showed that 48% of survey participants expect a rise of 2% or less. Perhaps that will stop those at the top of organisations from breaking out into a nervous sweat, and see them convinced instead that a pay rise could be a good thing. Not least for employee engagement and retention, but also when it comes to their competition, who could benefit from your mass exodus of staff heading for more lush pastures.

Recruiters would also benefit if a third of all workforces suddenly upped sticks in the hope of a fairer deal. Though it's been proven that pay is only one of the reasons someone would be attracted to a job, it seems like recruiters should brace themselves for it to be a hot topic with candidates fed up with no increases year on year whilst fighting the rising cost of living. Job satisfaction is all well and good, but it doesn't pay the bills. One compromise is extra benefits, such as healthcare packages and company cars; remote or flexible working, for example.

One last significant finding from the Glassdoor report concerned redundancy, with 35% of those surveyed feeling this was a threat not yet put to bed in our improving economy. It appears there's little foundation for such fears, however, given that fewer bosses have communicated that redundancies are possible, and the actual number of people being made redundant dropping.

Recruiters may see a rise in vacancies, balanced against an equal rise in the number of people looking for work. Their challenge is, if someone has left because a pay rise wasn't on the cards, how will the next candidate - who may have also 'walked' because he/she didn't see the increment they felt they deserved in their previous position – find what they seek in the new organisation?

Fast Recruitment Websites help recruitment agencies attract the best talent and clients with their attractive, functional, fit-for-purpose, affordable websites. Call 01302 288591 for an informal chat about your requirements, or email us at info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.com.

There’s no doubt that the past few years have been shaky - for all industries, not just recruitment. A new focus from a government able to exercise greater freedom when it comes to the implementation of their policies compels us to consider: what can we expect to see in the near future?

According to the Association of Recruitment Consultancies (ARC), a few changes look to be on the horizon…

• A National Minimum Wage increase
Proposed is an increase of the NMW, to approximately £8, by 2020, something that will no doubt please those campaigning for the Living Wage. However, over the government’s five-year term, this amounts to an annual increase of 4%, which is only marginally more than the 3% decided in the October 2014 review.

• Help to create two million new jobs
An initiative that sounds like a definite headline grabber, the government’s pledge to reduce unemployment is admirable but is largely without plan or strategy. Just where will these two million jobs come from?

• A change to employees’ contractual terms to protect more workers

The promise to revamp zero hours’ contracts has been longstanding, and focuses on the abolition of the exclusivity clauses such contracts contain. A welcome move for lower paid workers.

• Tougher approach towards those employing illegal workers and exploitation
Regulation is expected to be tightened, to try and control the illegal labour market. The heavier hand will be felt by employers using migrant workers as ‘slave labour’, rather than penalising workers themselves.

• Larger companies to show transparency, in respect to pay and gender
In an attempt to make the workplace more equal, and to bring women’s pay in line with their male counterparts, organisations employing more than 250 people will be encouraged to publish salary figures.

• Paid leave for volunteers
A curved ball, but one that seems to be part of the drive towards greater community responsibility and care. Employees from large organisations and the public sector would be entitled to three days of paid leave to carry out voluntary work in their community.

• Rescinding the ban on agency workers filling in for employees on strike
A very interesting proposal for recruitment agencies, who are currently unable to supply staff in such circumstances. However, though this may be good for agencies’ bottom lines, the negative PR associated with such a move may cancel out short-term financial boosts.

• A referendum on Britain’s membership of the EU
Never far from the headlines this topic, a referendum is expected as early as 2017. This may be good news for agencies, concerning the restrictions EU directives currently uphold; however, some argue that trade with Europe may be affected. The sheer amount of legislation that may change if Britain leaves the EU will take some time to adjust to.

There’s no guarantee that the pledges made during an election campaign will play out, and these forecasts may simply remain concepts and proposals. One thing is certain, though: nothing ever stays the same – change is on the cards.

Fast Recruitment Websites build high quality websites for UK recruitment agencies without the inflated price tag. We specialise in helping start-up agencies get online fast, and established agencies to enjoy the benefits of a professional site without the need for excessive capital investment. Call us on 01302 288591 or email us via info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.co.uk.
Original article: http://www.arc-org.net/news/the-next-5-years-what-can-we-expect/

04 Jun 2015

A weighty issue!

A new study by CareerBuilder shows that the workplace and slim waistlines are not compatible – that those looking to lose weight have fat chance of doing so.

More than a thousand people were surveyed; 41% admitted that they’d put on weight since they moved to their current jobs, with 18% of those gaining more than ten pounds. Said Scott Helmes, Managing Director of CareerBuilder UK: “Work-related stress, lack of sleep and overly packed schedules can often get in the way of healthy eating and exercise habits. Poor physical health can also take a toll on mental health and work quality, so it’s important for workers to stay active, even if it just means taking small breaks throughout the day to walk around or stretch.”

It probably doesn’t take a genius to work out that sedentary roles cause more weight gain than jobs that require some level of manual activity. Though continually sitting at a desk was the major obstacle to losing weight, the survey showed more reasons why workers find it hard to shed the pounds.

The temptation of the office biscuit tin was a contender (28%), as were workplace celebrations, snacking and ‘happy hours’. The strain and stress of the role itself was also a contributory factor as to why workers felt they had no energy left for exercising before or after work. 32% claimed stress was one reason they ate more, which compounded the effect on their weight. This wasn’t a gender issue, either – the same amount of men and women reported feeling overweight.

Despite these challenges, the survey found that over two-thirds of workers regularly exercised. Scott Helmes also gave his own tips to those finding it hard to fit in exercise as part of their daily routine:

  • Put exercising in your calendar: plan ahead and make time for it
  • Put more activity into your daily routine: for example, Park further away from the entrance to your work premises, take the stairs instead of the lift, get off the bus/train a stop earlier, etc.
  • Ban the fizzy drinks from your desk: drink water or green tea
  • Bring a healthy lunch to work: it takes just a little effort each morning, but will prove much kinder to your waistline than the junk food options commonly chosen when time is sparse
  • Keep healthy snacks in your desk: the biscuit tin will be less of a temptation, and you’ll never feel hungry

Though the survey showed that the onus of managing their weight is on the individual, it was apparent that few employers supported employees’ healthy diets and exercise, with a lack of gym passes, canteens stocking nutritious food, or other wellbeing perks, for example. 41% of those surveyed said they’d take advantage of such benefits if they were introduced.

Fast Recruitment Websites is rapidly becoming the UK's leading low-cost recruitment website supplier. For a no obligation informal chat about your website design needs, contact us on 01302 288591 or info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.co.uk.

Social media is undoubtedly a valuable tool for agencies, which allows them to get right under candidates' and clients' noses. But has the fascination, if ever it was there, worn off?

Social media is still a relatively new phenomenon, and it's probably inconceivable that something still being resisted by many companies and industries can appear to be 'on the way out'. Facebook, for example, has more over-fifties using it than the hip, happening generation it's purportedly aimed at.

LinkedIn has always been recognised as a professional platform, for business users only, with the social element focused on widening our networks and contact base, to increase opportunities and showcase our skills and expertise. Recruiters may still run searches daily, but if the audience has moved off, this is bound to have an effect.

It's important to remember the routines and habits of candidates using the site. For example, far fewer numbers search LinkedIn between recruiters' office hours; the main time the site is accessed by job-seekers is Sunday evening, between 7pm and 10pm, when the dreaded 'Monday morning feeling' starts to kick in for those dissatisfied with their jobs. For those happy in their roles, it's likely they use it sporadically, if at all, and it's therefore fair to assume that their professional details on the social media site are out of date.

Keyword searches may not be as effective as they could be on LinkedIn, as few candidates pen their summary with searchable text in mind. There currently seems a fashion to slim down, or strip, profiles to make them more concise, rendering keyword searches even harder.

Because candidates may not be regular users of LinkedIn, even if they are in the process of searching for a role, it's hard to use the platform when a fast response is needed. It's perhaps more appropriate, therefore, to see LinkedIn as a longer-term tool, to build relationships with employees and clients alike.

Though a professional website, recruiters are sometimes viewed with suspicion when trying to connect with individuals on LinkedIn. InMails, mass messages and impersonal approaches are not the way to combat this; approach and talk to someone just as if introducing yourself in person. The good news is that referrals occur naturally and effectively on this social platform.

The groups both parties join on LinkedIn typically differ: recruiters tend to gravitate towards industry bodies, whilst candidates link up with peers and groups that align with their personal interests.

LinkedIn is still one of the main online tools for recruiters, and with a little shift in strategy and mind-set, there's no reason why this can't continue.

The greatest online tool for any recruitment agency is their website. Is yours still relevant, attractive, and fully functional in today's fast-paced, omni-channel world? Call Fast Recruitment Websites for a friendly chat about your current and future website design needs, on 01302 288591, or email us via info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.com.

Well, strategy and efficient systems are a must. No order or organisation, and you could find yourself missing out on key talent as you try and make sense of paperwork, appointments and candidates' identities. Understanding the selection criteria of all roles is essential; it's easy to overlook crucial details when there are so many roles to fill. Often, hiring is carried out locally, which can prove a sparse hunting ground for top-level managers or supervisors.

A new warehouse or headquarters, as a result of expansion, can be a lucrative project for any agency. No one is suggesting it's an easy, task however, so how can you make the volume recruitment process more manageable?

Have an effective initial screening process

The amount of applications may run into the hundreds or thousands, so an initial 'sweep' of the candidates can help weed out those less appropriate for the culture of the company. Create a 'perfect' candidate profile, regardless of role, and use this as a measuring stick to compare every application against. Plenty will fall short in one area or another, and can be quickly discarded. The better you plan for and envisage the type of person you're looking for, the easier the process will be.

Detail, detail, detail

Meticulously explain the responsibilities and expectations of the relevant role to the candidates that remain; in some cases, it may not be what that job-seeker imagined. Those less committed will naturally fall by the wayside as a result.

Use tools and tests

It's conceivable that you still have a large number of what appear generally appropriate candidates at this stage. More weeding out is needed; psychometric or competency-based tests will separate those with the most suitable skills and qualities.

Efficiency

Collecting references and certifications as part of the necessary pre-employment checks and administration can be time-consuming when there's a high volume of employees. Again, plan for this, and put as many systems in place as necessary, to make the whole process methodical and timely.

Don't create a cattle market

Though you may be tasked with finding 500 suitable and qualified candidates, for example, it remains a personal, challenging process to the individual job-seeker – something that shouldn't be forgotten. Remain in contact with candidates after the offer letters have been sent, right up until work commences (and afterwards, ideally); there's still room for people to change their minds or to be offered other roles elsewhere.

Make the process a positive one at every stage, and keep all candidates engaged; though they may not be suitable in this instance, you can still foster relationships with the 'unsuccessfuls', who may turn out to be perfect for alternative roles with your other clients. It may also prove a godsend to create a 'close runner up' pool of candidates; there's often a natural loss of employees within the first few months of a new store/warehouse/headquarters, until things settle down.

Seeking input from recruitment professionals throughout the development process has enabled Fast Recruitment Websites to genuinely tailor the product to your needs. Our aim is to provide a reliable, affordable solution to all independent recruitment agencies, however large or small. Call us on 01302 288591 or contact us at info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.com.

If you want your website and job vacancies to be listed in Google's mobile search results after 21st April, you might want to read this.
 
On 21st April 2015, Google is expected to make updates that will have a significant impact onmobilesearch results worldwide formobilesearchers. 
 
The update is intended to improve rankings for sites that provide amobile-friendlyexperience to searchers onmobiledevices, and, by association, may demote sites that do not.
 
Note that the mobile-friendly update only affects mobile search results - i.e. searches from smartphones and tablets - not searches conducted on a desktop or laptop computer.
 
Google does offer a simple tool to check if your site is mobile friendly. Please see https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly
 
For the last 12 months, we have been building all of our new sites using responsive design to ensure they are mobile friendly meaning new customers can come to us in confidence. 
 
If your website does not meet Google's requirements, get in touch and we will help you avoid losing traffic. 
 
 
If you want to discuss your situation with an expert now, call us on 01302 247 010.

#careers #jobs #recruiting #dotheyevenwork

There's little doubt that social media is an important tool in a recruitment agency's box. With a wealth of platforms, varying in popularity and audience size, social media is invaluable when it comes to getting in-front of people.

But because these online networks are so ingrained in our daily lives, and from the sheer number of people using them, how can any Tweet, post or update ever be more than just noise?

The humble hashtag is an effective filter. Add #jobs after a vacancy posting, though necessary, and you're really just stating the obvious. By also adding #engineering (or other sector), however, you define and filter your post's audience and amplify its reach to people outside your network. Given that many people use hashtags as a search tool, it makes sense to include them in-front of your key words.

Twitter statistics show that posts with hashtags see double the engagement, and 40% are retweeted. Instagram, Google+ and Facebook posts also fare better with hashtags. The cardinal (unwritten) rule, however, is to use them wisely - add more than two in any post or Tweet and you advertise your naivety of social media etiquette to the world.

With regards to your agency's marketing and branding, hashtags are also useful. Reporting on specific industry developments with a relevant 'identifying' hashtag can show an organisation with its finger on the pulse, and an influencer people should follow.

Hashtags are not a feature of Linkedin, which is arguably a valuable social media platform when it comes to job hunting. They were part of the relationship Linkedin had with Twitter, but following their 'divorce' in 2012, they disappeared. Hashtags can still be included within the body of a published post on Linkedin, and as LI is one place you wouldn't expect to see one, perhaps this is more reason to use them, as part of your agency's content marketing initiatives.

Thinking of the searches job-hunting candidates employ online, here are the top 5 hashtags (as of late 2014):

#jobs #JobOpening #JobOpportunity

#Hiring #NowHiring

#Freelance – Enjoying a surge in popularity, freelancers are in demand as employers adapt to flexible ways of working

#MarketingJobs – 'Marketing' could be swapped for any industry or specific job role; all fields have their own community of recruiters

#JobTips – A popular search term with jobseekers. Add this to tip sheets, resources or relevant blog posts you publish, and become a trusted adviser and an organisation to turn to with anyone looking for work in your area or specialism.

Location-based hashtags can help you find your audience, and are often retweeted by organisations and bodies in the same district. Using hashtags in real time, at industry events for example, can help others follow if they're not able to attend, and further cements your expertise. There are even custom hashtags for recruiters, such as #JobHour, that encourage those hiring to promote their vacancies, and which also give jobseekers a specific time to 'tune in'.

With statistics such as 74% of companies filling vacancies via social media, and 54% using Twitter as a recruitment tool, learning the online tricks of the trade is crucial. Hashtags can boost the prominence of a posting, provided it's appropriate and targeted, and help those searching for a specific vacancy to find what they're looking for. #Cool

Fast Recruitment Websites is a leading provider of low cost, high quality recruitment website design services. Our recruitment website software is constantly evolving, based on customer feedback, and offers one of the most comprehensive, competitively priced solutions on the market. Call us now to arrange a demo, on 01302 288 591.

A new survey by recruitment company Adecco has brought to light what appears to be a contributory element to the current youth unemployment crisis.
Figures show a worrying gap between the amount of jobs applied for, and the number of interviews subsequently secured, by those aged 16-24. On average, job seekers in this age group applied for eleven jobs during the last twelve months but were invited to interview only twice. One in ten didn't secure an interview at all.

16-24 year olds in education assume their job-hunting activity will take around six months before they land a full-time role. However, the survey showed this belief was unfounded, and that it takes far longer. One of the problems, according to Adecco, is that few youngsters find the time or inclination to maximise practical experience whilst embroiled in their studies.

With a quarter of 16-19 year olds having never even applied for a job, Adecco's study points to a proportion of young people who lack job-hunting knowledge and skills. Given that a quarter of young people report a distinct lack of career advice and education within school, those approaching recruitment agencies may desperately need guidance of this kind to gain full-time employment.

Says Alex Fleming, Managing Director of Adecco, "Our research shows that young people are not hitting the ground running when leaving school or university. Whilst they might feel confident in their studies, they do not feel they have the experience required to actually secure a job."

Barclays LifeSkills head, Kirstie Mackey, agrees. She said, "We know many young people already have plenty of key skills; they just need support to understand how to put them into practice."

Can recruitment agencies be the bridge between businesses looking to inject new blood into their organisations and this sea of young talent that lacks 'work readiness'?

Tom Hadley, REC Director of Policy and Professional Services, believes so. He says, "Youth unemployment is one of the biggest issues this country faces. Agencies can play an active role in helping young jobseekers. Recruiters, as experts in their local labour markets, are perfectly placed to reach out to the next generation of workers and reduce local youth employment. They can make a real difference to the lives of young people."

Fast Recruitment Websites solely provide professional websites to UK recruitment agencies without the inflated price tag. We specialise in helping start-up agencies get online fast and established agencies to enjoy the benefits of a professional site without the need for excessive capital investment. Call us on 01302 288591 for a friendly, no obligation chat about your needs.

Is your dream to be an international playboy, top footballer, supermodel or successful pop star? According to Glassdoor, the best jobs in reality are much less exciting.
Their list, based on career opportunities, potential salary, and the number of job openings, is the über-normal 'marketing manager'. Sounding even less likely to be the role everyone desires, Glassdoor lists 'finance director' at number two.

Perhaps the most manual role featured in their top ten is at number three: 'mechanical engineer'. Here's the rest:

4. Sales manager
5. Business analyst
6. IT manager
7. Civil engineer
8. Product manager
9. Lawyer
10. Software engineer

YouGov conducted similar research, with interesting results. From their survey, the top three jobs most coveted by the UK population are: 1) author (60%); 2) librarian (54%); and an academic (51%). It would seem from this that the majority of us are book lovers, or we're certainly keen to continually learn. Correlation between YouGov's poll and Glassdoor's findings shows that 'lawyer' is the only role to appear in both top ten lists.

Gender stereotypes were more likely to be confirmed than diminished in YouGov's survey – men were more likely to aspire to be astronauts and train drivers than interior designers or librarians, the latter preferred predominantly by women.

As to what makes 'the best job' has been the subject of various studies. One theory suggests that there are three separate elements that, when combined, make a role particularly covetable.

1) Matches our skills: The best roles are those that we're confident we can carry out, but which also challenge us at the same time.
2) Makes a difference: We don't have to be working for Greenpeace to believe we're having some sort of impact. Believing that what we do, day to day, is valued, is crucial.
3) Palatable colleagues: Working for a boss that we respect, and with colleagues we like, makes any job more enjoyable. A good environment makes for happier employees.

So there you have it. No water-slide testers or sex toy quality controllers in sight. Though many of us may feel a slight mood dip each Monday morning, it's quite possible that we're already working in our 'dream job'.

Fast Recruitment Websites is rapidly becoming the UK's leading low-cost recruitment website supplier. For a no obligation informal chat about your website design needs, contact us on 01302 288591 or info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.co.uk.

A new survey from finance company Pay4Later has shown that 23% of the population are not just looking to change their company, but to change their job altogether, through retraining. A huge number, particularly when you realise this represents 10.9 million people.

The commitment from those looking to learn new skills and take control of their career was high, with over half prepared to fund any associated costs themselves.

The sector within which most were hoping to retrain was healthcare, with some 22% of health workers surveyed – representing 2.34 million – planning such a move within the next three years. Compare that with employees from the beauty industry – only 2%, 229,000, felt that they wanted a complete change.

Education was another prominent sector; 18% of teaching staff plan to retrain, whilst 12% of those working in the financial sector are keen to do the same.

Geographically, it's perhaps no surprise to learn that 38% of Londoners crave new skills and different opportunities. Those living in Wales, according to the survey, appeared to be the most settled, with only 16% looking at retraining opportunities.

Looking at the ages of those making plans to retrain, 18-24 year olds were the most likely, with just under half of those interviewed planning a new career in a different industry. We could assume that this is down to the career longevity this age group has before them, compared with older employees more likely to be constrained by such as financial responsibilities that demand consistency and stability. However, considering 39% of 35-44 year olds also stated plans to retrain, this doesn't seem to be the case.

It isn't always job progression that sees people retrain, some employees swap roles/industries to gain a better work/life balance, or for the chance to alter their working pattern – to work from home, for example. Whatever the reason, as an agency, gathering information that details all suitable retraining opportunities and facilities in your locality will further help you steer your candidates in their next move.

Fast Recruitment Websites build high quality websites for UK recruitment agencies without the inflated price tag. We specialise in helping start-up agencies get online fast, and established agencies to enjoy the benefits of a professional site without the need for excessive capital investment. Call us on 01302 288591 or email us via info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.co.uk.

Source: http://www.onrec.com/news/statistics-and-trends/to-109-million-people-plan-to-retrain-for-new-jobs

There are some that say the economy is still shaky, and others – mostly politicians – that tell us the economy is definitely on the up. Stability is increasing, jobs are everywhere, business is booming, so they say. So does this mean that one subject firmly 'parked' for almost a decade will finally be back on the table?

Pay rises are rarely expected in today's market. But new research shows that, currently, one in three workers would consider moving jobs if a pay increase wasn't somewhere to be found on the horizon.

A report by Glassdoor reveals that 39% of those surveyed will look for a new job if they don't receive an increase in their pay within the next year, which equates to approximately 12 million people. With statistics quoting the average cost of a vacancy as £30,000, that's one heck of a headache for employers – surely, facing such an outlay for replacing these members of staff, a fair and conservative increment seems like a good business move?

How much is 'fair'?

What an employee expects and what their employer can afford to pay, or will consider paying, could be poles apart. Glassdoor showed that 48% of survey participants expect a rise of 2% or less. Perhaps that will stop those at the top of organisations from breaking out into a nervous sweat, and see them convinced instead that a pay rise could be a good thing. Not least for employee engagement and retention, but also when it comes to their competition, who could benefit from your mass exodus of staff heading for more lush pastures.

Recruiters would also benefit if a third of all workforces suddenly upped sticks in the hope of a fairer deal. Though it's been proven that pay is only one of the reasons someone would be attracted to a job, it seems like recruiters should brace themselves for it to be a hot topic with candidates fed up with no increases year on year whilst fighting the rising cost of living. Job satisfaction is all well and good, but it doesn't pay the bills. One compromise is extra benefits, such as healthcare packages and company cars; remote or flexible working, for example.

One last significant finding from the Glassdoor report concerned redundancy, with 35% of those surveyed feeling this was a threat not yet put to bed in our improving economy. It appears there's little foundation for such fears, however, given that fewer bosses have communicated that redundancies are possible, and the actual number of people being made redundant dropping.

Recruiters may see a rise in vacancies, balanced against an equal rise in the number of people looking for work. Their challenge is, if someone has left because a pay rise wasn't on the cards, how will the next candidate - who may have also 'walked' because he/she didn't see the increment they felt they deserved in their previous position – find what they seek in the new organisation?

Fast Recruitment Websites help recruitment agencies attract the best talent and clients with their attractive, functional, fit-for-purpose, affordable websites. Call 01302 288591 for an informal chat about your requirements, or email us at info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.com.

There’s no doubt that the past few years have been shaky - for all industries, not just recruitment. A new focus from a government able to exercise greater freedom when it comes to the implementation of their policies compels us to consider: what can we expect to see in the near future?

According to the Association of Recruitment Consultancies (ARC), a few changes look to be on the horizon…

• A National Minimum Wage increase
Proposed is an increase of the NMW, to approximately £8, by 2020, something that will no doubt please those campaigning for the Living Wage. However, over the government’s five-year term, this amounts to an annual increase of 4%, which is only marginally more than the 3% decided in the October 2014 review.

• Help to create two million new jobs
An initiative that sounds like a definite headline grabber, the government’s pledge to reduce unemployment is admirable but is largely without plan or strategy. Just where will these two million jobs come from?

• A change to employees’ contractual terms to protect more workers

The promise to revamp zero hours’ contracts has been longstanding, and focuses on the abolition of the exclusivity clauses such contracts contain. A welcome move for lower paid workers.

• Tougher approach towards those employing illegal workers and exploitation
Regulation is expected to be tightened, to try and control the illegal labour market. The heavier hand will be felt by employers using migrant workers as ‘slave labour’, rather than penalising workers themselves.

• Larger companies to show transparency, in respect to pay and gender
In an attempt to make the workplace more equal, and to bring women’s pay in line with their male counterparts, organisations employing more than 250 people will be encouraged to publish salary figures.

• Paid leave for volunteers
A curved ball, but one that seems to be part of the drive towards greater community responsibility and care. Employees from large organisations and the public sector would be entitled to three days of paid leave to carry out voluntary work in their community.

• Rescinding the ban on agency workers filling in for employees on strike
A very interesting proposal for recruitment agencies, who are currently unable to supply staff in such circumstances. However, though this may be good for agencies’ bottom lines, the negative PR associated with such a move may cancel out short-term financial boosts.

• A referendum on Britain’s membership of the EU
Never far from the headlines this topic, a referendum is expected as early as 2017. This may be good news for agencies, concerning the restrictions EU directives currently uphold; however, some argue that trade with Europe may be affected. The sheer amount of legislation that may change if Britain leaves the EU will take some time to adjust to.

There’s no guarantee that the pledges made during an election campaign will play out, and these forecasts may simply remain concepts and proposals. One thing is certain, though: nothing ever stays the same – change is on the cards.

Fast Recruitment Websites build high quality websites for UK recruitment agencies without the inflated price tag. We specialise in helping start-up agencies get online fast, and established agencies to enjoy the benefits of a professional site without the need for excessive capital investment. Call us on 01302 288591 or email us via info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.co.uk.
Original article: http://www.arc-org.net/news/the-next-5-years-what-can-we-expect/

04 Jun 2015

A weighty issue!

A new study by CareerBuilder shows that the workplace and slim waistlines are not compatible – that those looking to lose weight have fat chance of doing so.

More than a thousand people were surveyed; 41% admitted that they’d put on weight since they moved to their current jobs, with 18% of those gaining more than ten pounds. Said Scott Helmes, Managing Director of CareerBuilder UK: “Work-related stress, lack of sleep and overly packed schedules can often get in the way of healthy eating and exercise habits. Poor physical health can also take a toll on mental health and work quality, so it’s important for workers to stay active, even if it just means taking small breaks throughout the day to walk around or stretch.”

It probably doesn’t take a genius to work out that sedentary roles cause more weight gain than jobs that require some level of manual activity. Though continually sitting at a desk was the major obstacle to losing weight, the survey showed more reasons why workers find it hard to shed the pounds.

The temptation of the office biscuit tin was a contender (28%), as were workplace celebrations, snacking and ‘happy hours’. The strain and stress of the role itself was also a contributory factor as to why workers felt they had no energy left for exercising before or after work. 32% claimed stress was one reason they ate more, which compounded the effect on their weight. This wasn’t a gender issue, either – the same amount of men and women reported feeling overweight.

Despite these challenges, the survey found that over two-thirds of workers regularly exercised. Scott Helmes also gave his own tips to those finding it hard to fit in exercise as part of their daily routine:

  • Put exercising in your calendar: plan ahead and make time for it
  • Put more activity into your daily routine: for example, Park further away from the entrance to your work premises, take the stairs instead of the lift, get off the bus/train a stop earlier, etc.
  • Ban the fizzy drinks from your desk: drink water or green tea
  • Bring a healthy lunch to work: it takes just a little effort each morning, but will prove much kinder to your waistline than the junk food options commonly chosen when time is sparse
  • Keep healthy snacks in your desk: the biscuit tin will be less of a temptation, and you’ll never feel hungry

Though the survey showed that the onus of managing their weight is on the individual, it was apparent that few employers supported employees’ healthy diets and exercise, with a lack of gym passes, canteens stocking nutritious food, or other wellbeing perks, for example. 41% of those surveyed said they’d take advantage of such benefits if they were introduced.

Fast Recruitment Websites is rapidly becoming the UK's leading low-cost recruitment website supplier. For a no obligation informal chat about your website design needs, contact us on 01302 288591 or info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.co.uk.

Social media is undoubtedly a valuable tool for agencies, which allows them to get right under candidates' and clients' noses. But has the fascination, if ever it was there, worn off?

Social media is still a relatively new phenomenon, and it's probably inconceivable that something still being resisted by many companies and industries can appear to be 'on the way out'. Facebook, for example, has more over-fifties using it than the hip, happening generation it's purportedly aimed at.

LinkedIn has always been recognised as a professional platform, for business users only, with the social element focused on widening our networks and contact base, to increase opportunities and showcase our skills and expertise. Recruiters may still run searches daily, but if the audience has moved off, this is bound to have an effect.

It's important to remember the routines and habits of candidates using the site. For example, far fewer numbers search LinkedIn between recruiters' office hours; the main time the site is accessed by job-seekers is Sunday evening, between 7pm and 10pm, when the dreaded 'Monday morning feeling' starts to kick in for those dissatisfied with their jobs. For those happy in their roles, it's likely they use it sporadically, if at all, and it's therefore fair to assume that their professional details on the social media site are out of date.

Keyword searches may not be as effective as they could be on LinkedIn, as few candidates pen their summary with searchable text in mind. There currently seems a fashion to slim down, or strip, profiles to make them more concise, rendering keyword searches even harder.

Because candidates may not be regular users of LinkedIn, even if they are in the process of searching for a role, it's hard to use the platform when a fast response is needed. It's perhaps more appropriate, therefore, to see LinkedIn as a longer-term tool, to build relationships with employees and clients alike.

Though a professional website, recruiters are sometimes viewed with suspicion when trying to connect with individuals on LinkedIn. InMails, mass messages and impersonal approaches are not the way to combat this; approach and talk to someone just as if introducing yourself in person. The good news is that referrals occur naturally and effectively on this social platform.

The groups both parties join on LinkedIn typically differ: recruiters tend to gravitate towards industry bodies, whilst candidates link up with peers and groups that align with their personal interests.

LinkedIn is still one of the main online tools for recruiters, and with a little shift in strategy and mind-set, there's no reason why this can't continue.

The greatest online tool for any recruitment agency is their website. Is yours still relevant, attractive, and fully functional in today's fast-paced, omni-channel world? Call Fast Recruitment Websites for a friendly chat about your current and future website design needs, on 01302 288591, or email us via info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.com.

Well, strategy and efficient systems are a must. No order or organisation, and you could find yourself missing out on key talent as you try and make sense of paperwork, appointments and candidates' identities. Understanding the selection criteria of all roles is essential; it's easy to overlook crucial details when there are so many roles to fill. Often, hiring is carried out locally, which can prove a sparse hunting ground for top-level managers or supervisors.

A new warehouse or headquarters, as a result of expansion, can be a lucrative project for any agency. No one is suggesting it's an easy, task however, so how can you make the volume recruitment process more manageable?

Have an effective initial screening process

The amount of applications may run into the hundreds or thousands, so an initial 'sweep' of the candidates can help weed out those less appropriate for the culture of the company. Create a 'perfect' candidate profile, regardless of role, and use this as a measuring stick to compare every application against. Plenty will fall short in one area or another, and can be quickly discarded. The better you plan for and envisage the type of person you're looking for, the easier the process will be.

Detail, detail, detail

Meticulously explain the responsibilities and expectations of the relevant role to the candidates that remain; in some cases, it may not be what that job-seeker imagined. Those less committed will naturally fall by the wayside as a result.

Use tools and tests

It's conceivable that you still have a large number of what appear generally appropriate candidates at this stage. More weeding out is needed; psychometric or competency-based tests will separate those with the most suitable skills and qualities.

Efficiency

Collecting references and certifications as part of the necessary pre-employment checks and administration can be time-consuming when there's a high volume of employees. Again, plan for this, and put as many systems in place as necessary, to make the whole process methodical and timely.

Don't create a cattle market

Though you may be tasked with finding 500 suitable and qualified candidates, for example, it remains a personal, challenging process to the individual job-seeker – something that shouldn't be forgotten. Remain in contact with candidates after the offer letters have been sent, right up until work commences (and afterwards, ideally); there's still room for people to change their minds or to be offered other roles elsewhere.

Make the process a positive one at every stage, and keep all candidates engaged; though they may not be suitable in this instance, you can still foster relationships with the 'unsuccessfuls', who may turn out to be perfect for alternative roles with your other clients. It may also prove a godsend to create a 'close runner up' pool of candidates; there's often a natural loss of employees within the first few months of a new store/warehouse/headquarters, until things settle down.

Seeking input from recruitment professionals throughout the development process has enabled Fast Recruitment Websites to genuinely tailor the product to your needs. Our aim is to provide a reliable, affordable solution to all independent recruitment agencies, however large or small. Call us on 01302 288591 or contact us at info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.com.

If you want your website and job vacancies to be listed in Google's mobile search results after 21st April, you might want to read this.
 
On 21st April 2015, Google is expected to make updates that will have a significant impact onmobilesearch results worldwide formobilesearchers. 
 
The update is intended to improve rankings for sites that provide amobile-friendlyexperience to searchers onmobiledevices, and, by association, may demote sites that do not.
 
Note that the mobile-friendly update only affects mobile search results - i.e. searches from smartphones and tablets - not searches conducted on a desktop or laptop computer.
 
Google does offer a simple tool to check if your site is mobile friendly. Please see https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly
 
For the last 12 months, we have been building all of our new sites using responsive design to ensure they are mobile friendly meaning new customers can come to us in confidence. 
 
If your website does not meet Google's requirements, get in touch and we will help you avoid losing traffic. 
 
 
If you want to discuss your situation with an expert now, call us on 01302 247 010.

#careers #jobs #recruiting #dotheyevenwork

There's little doubt that social media is an important tool in a recruitment agency's box. With a wealth of platforms, varying in popularity and audience size, social media is invaluable when it comes to getting in-front of people.

But because these online networks are so ingrained in our daily lives, and from the sheer number of people using them, how can any Tweet, post or update ever be more than just noise?

The humble hashtag is an effective filter. Add #jobs after a vacancy posting, though necessary, and you're really just stating the obvious. By also adding #engineering (or other sector), however, you define and filter your post's audience and amplify its reach to people outside your network. Given that many people use hashtags as a search tool, it makes sense to include them in-front of your key words.

Twitter statistics show that posts with hashtags see double the engagement, and 40% are retweeted. Instagram, Google+ and Facebook posts also fare better with hashtags. The cardinal (unwritten) rule, however, is to use them wisely - add more than two in any post or Tweet and you advertise your naivety of social media etiquette to the world.

With regards to your agency's marketing and branding, hashtags are also useful. Reporting on specific industry developments with a relevant 'identifying' hashtag can show an organisation with its finger on the pulse, and an influencer people should follow.

Hashtags are not a feature of Linkedin, which is arguably a valuable social media platform when it comes to job hunting. They were part of the relationship Linkedin had with Twitter, but following their 'divorce' in 2012, they disappeared. Hashtags can still be included within the body of a published post on Linkedin, and as LI is one place you wouldn't expect to see one, perhaps this is more reason to use them, as part of your agency's content marketing initiatives.

Thinking of the searches job-hunting candidates employ online, here are the top 5 hashtags (as of late 2014):

#jobs #JobOpening #JobOpportunity

#Hiring #NowHiring

#Freelance – Enjoying a surge in popularity, freelancers are in demand as employers adapt to flexible ways of working

#MarketingJobs – 'Marketing' could be swapped for any industry or specific job role; all fields have their own community of recruiters

#JobTips – A popular search term with jobseekers. Add this to tip sheets, resources or relevant blog posts you publish, and become a trusted adviser and an organisation to turn to with anyone looking for work in your area or specialism.

Location-based hashtags can help you find your audience, and are often retweeted by organisations and bodies in the same district. Using hashtags in real time, at industry events for example, can help others follow if they're not able to attend, and further cements your expertise. There are even custom hashtags for recruiters, such as #JobHour, that encourage those hiring to promote their vacancies, and which also give jobseekers a specific time to 'tune in'.

With statistics such as 74% of companies filling vacancies via social media, and 54% using Twitter as a recruitment tool, learning the online tricks of the trade is crucial. Hashtags can boost the prominence of a posting, provided it's appropriate and targeted, and help those searching for a specific vacancy to find what they're looking for. #Cool

Fast Recruitment Websites is a leading provider of low cost, high quality recruitment website design services. Our recruitment website software is constantly evolving, based on customer feedback, and offers one of the most comprehensive, competitively priced solutions on the market. Call us now to arrange a demo, on 01302 288 591.

A new survey by recruitment company Adecco has brought to light what appears to be a contributory element to the current youth unemployment crisis.
Figures show a worrying gap between the amount of jobs applied for, and the number of interviews subsequently secured, by those aged 16-24. On average, job seekers in this age group applied for eleven jobs during the last twelve months but were invited to interview only twice. One in ten didn't secure an interview at all.

16-24 year olds in education assume their job-hunting activity will take around six months before they land a full-time role. However, the survey showed this belief was unfounded, and that it takes far longer. One of the problems, according to Adecco, is that few youngsters find the time or inclination to maximise practical experience whilst embroiled in their studies.

With a quarter of 16-19 year olds having never even applied for a job, Adecco's study points to a proportion of young people who lack job-hunting knowledge and skills. Given that a quarter of young people report a distinct lack of career advice and education within school, those approaching recruitment agencies may desperately need guidance of this kind to gain full-time employment.

Says Alex Fleming, Managing Director of Adecco, "Our research shows that young people are not hitting the ground running when leaving school or university. Whilst they might feel confident in their studies, they do not feel they have the experience required to actually secure a job."

Barclays LifeSkills head, Kirstie Mackey, agrees. She said, "We know many young people already have plenty of key skills; they just need support to understand how to put them into practice."

Can recruitment agencies be the bridge between businesses looking to inject new blood into their organisations and this sea of young talent that lacks 'work readiness'?

Tom Hadley, REC Director of Policy and Professional Services, believes so. He says, "Youth unemployment is one of the biggest issues this country faces. Agencies can play an active role in helping young jobseekers. Recruiters, as experts in their local labour markets, are perfectly placed to reach out to the next generation of workers and reduce local youth employment. They can make a real difference to the lives of young people."

Fast Recruitment Websites solely provide professional websites to UK recruitment agencies without the inflated price tag. We specialise in helping start-up agencies get online fast and established agencies to enjoy the benefits of a professional site without the need for excessive capital investment. Call us on 01302 288591 for a friendly, no obligation chat about your needs.

Is your dream to be an international playboy, top footballer, supermodel or successful pop star? According to Glassdoor, the best jobs in reality are much less exciting.
Their list, based on career opportunities, potential salary, and the number of job openings, is the über-normal 'marketing manager'. Sounding even less likely to be the role everyone desires, Glassdoor lists 'finance director' at number two.

Perhaps the most manual role featured in their top ten is at number three: 'mechanical engineer'. Here's the rest:

4. Sales manager
5. Business analyst
6. IT manager
7. Civil engineer
8. Product manager
9. Lawyer
10. Software engineer

YouGov conducted similar research, with interesting results. From their survey, the top three jobs most coveted by the UK population are: 1) author (60%); 2) librarian (54%); and an academic (51%). It would seem from this that the majority of us are book lovers, or we're certainly keen to continually learn. Correlation between YouGov's poll and Glassdoor's findings shows that 'lawyer' is the only role to appear in both top ten lists.

Gender stereotypes were more likely to be confirmed than diminished in YouGov's survey – men were more likely to aspire to be astronauts and train drivers than interior designers or librarians, the latter preferred predominantly by women.

As to what makes 'the best job' has been the subject of various studies. One theory suggests that there are three separate elements that, when combined, make a role particularly covetable.

1) Matches our skills: The best roles are those that we're confident we can carry out, but which also challenge us at the same time.
2) Makes a difference: We don't have to be working for Greenpeace to believe we're having some sort of impact. Believing that what we do, day to day, is valued, is crucial.
3) Palatable colleagues: Working for a boss that we respect, and with colleagues we like, makes any job more enjoyable. A good environment makes for happier employees.

So there you have it. No water-slide testers or sex toy quality controllers in sight. Though many of us may feel a slight mood dip each Monday morning, it's quite possible that we're already working in our 'dream job'.

Fast Recruitment Websites is rapidly becoming the UK's leading low-cost recruitment website supplier. For a no obligation informal chat about your website design needs, contact us on 01302 288591 or info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.co.uk.

A new survey from finance company Pay4Later has shown that 23% of the population are not just looking to change their company, but to change their job altogether, through retraining. A huge number, particularly when you realise this represents 10.9 million people.

The commitment from those looking to learn new skills and take control of their career was high, with over half prepared to fund any associated costs themselves.

The sector within which most were hoping to retrain was healthcare, with some 22% of health workers surveyed – representing 2.34 million – planning such a move within the next three years. Compare that with employees from the beauty industry – only 2%, 229,000, felt that they wanted a complete change.

Education was another prominent sector; 18% of teaching staff plan to retrain, whilst 12% of those working in the financial sector are keen to do the same.

Geographically, it's perhaps no surprise to learn that 38% of Londoners crave new skills and different opportunities. Those living in Wales, according to the survey, appeared to be the most settled, with only 16% looking at retraining opportunities.

Looking at the ages of those making plans to retrain, 18-24 year olds were the most likely, with just under half of those interviewed planning a new career in a different industry. We could assume that this is down to the career longevity this age group has before them, compared with older employees more likely to be constrained by such as financial responsibilities that demand consistency and stability. However, considering 39% of 35-44 year olds also stated plans to retrain, this doesn't seem to be the case.

It isn't always job progression that sees people retrain, some employees swap roles/industries to gain a better work/life balance, or for the chance to alter their working pattern – to work from home, for example. Whatever the reason, as an agency, gathering information that details all suitable retraining opportunities and facilities in your locality will further help you steer your candidates in their next move.

Fast Recruitment Websites build high quality websites for UK recruitment agencies without the inflated price tag. We specialise in helping start-up agencies get online fast, and established agencies to enjoy the benefits of a professional site without the need for excessive capital investment. Call us on 01302 288591 or email us via info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.co.uk.

Source: http://www.onrec.com/news/statistics-and-trends/to-109-million-people-plan-to-retrain-for-new-jobs

There are some that say the economy is still shaky, and others – mostly politicians – that tell us the economy is definitely on the up. Stability is increasing, jobs are everywhere, business is booming, so they say. So does this mean that one subject firmly 'parked' for almost a decade will finally be back on the table?

Pay rises are rarely expected in today's market. But new research shows that, currently, one in three workers would consider moving jobs if a pay increase wasn't somewhere to be found on the horizon.

A report by Glassdoor reveals that 39% of those surveyed will look for a new job if they don't receive an increase in their pay within the next year, which equates to approximately 12 million people. With statistics quoting the average cost of a vacancy as £30,000, that's one heck of a headache for employers – surely, facing such an outlay for replacing these members of staff, a fair and conservative increment seems like a good business move?

How much is 'fair'?

What an employee expects and what their employer can afford to pay, or will consider paying, could be poles apart. Glassdoor showed that 48% of survey participants expect a rise of 2% or less. Perhaps that will stop those at the top of organisations from breaking out into a nervous sweat, and see them convinced instead that a pay rise could be a good thing. Not least for employee engagement and retention, but also when it comes to their competition, who could benefit from your mass exodus of staff heading for more lush pastures.

Recruiters would also benefit if a third of all workforces suddenly upped sticks in the hope of a fairer deal. Though it's been proven that pay is only one of the reasons someone would be attracted to a job, it seems like recruiters should brace themselves for it to be a hot topic with candidates fed up with no increases year on year whilst fighting the rising cost of living. Job satisfaction is all well and good, but it doesn't pay the bills. One compromise is extra benefits, such as healthcare packages and company cars; remote or flexible working, for example.

One last significant finding from the Glassdoor report concerned redundancy, with 35% of those surveyed feeling this was a threat not yet put to bed in our improving economy. It appears there's little foundation for such fears, however, given that fewer bosses have communicated that redundancies are possible, and the actual number of people being made redundant dropping.

Recruiters may see a rise in vacancies, balanced against an equal rise in the number of people looking for work. Their challenge is, if someone has left because a pay rise wasn't on the cards, how will the next candidate - who may have also 'walked' because he/she didn't see the increment they felt they deserved in their previous position – find what they seek in the new organisation?

Fast Recruitment Websites help recruitment agencies attract the best talent and clients with their attractive, functional, fit-for-purpose, affordable websites. Call 01302 288591 for an informal chat about your requirements, or email us at info@fastrecruitmentwebsites.com.

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