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What's Happening in Recruitment?

Many people say, if you want to know what’s going on with the economy – ask a Recruiter. We tend to be that barometer, and it’s easy to see why! Job losses combined with a fall in demand for employment can only spell disaster for the economy. Historically, jobs have been the main factor in keeping Australia’s economy from falling into recession.

Despite the doom and gloom surrounding the unemployment figures released by the ABS last week, job losses were not as high as first expected. Predictions made by Treasury initially had the unemployment rate doubling in the June quarter. No doubt the JobKeeper subsidy has kept this number down.

There is no doubt however, that the COVID-19 pandemic has had a massive impact on the Australian job market, but with lockdown restrictions beginning to ease, the road to recovery is becoming clearer and some positive signs are starting to emerge. Candidates and clients are now asking us, as recruiters, “What are you seeing in the market?”

According to data from Seek, job ad volumes are slowly starting to return (up 39.7% month-on-month) and industries that were among the hardest hit by the lockdown are showing signs of recovery. Job ads across the Hospitality & Tourism industry, for example, were up by 138% for the month of May compared to the April average. Positive signs have also been evident in Trades & Services, which recorded a 36% lift in job ads over the same period. Meanwhile, Manufacturing, Transport & Logistics grew by 33%.

“In the last two weeks of May, we have seen job ad volumes slowly creep back up, which aligns to the will of governments to get the economy moving and get people back into jobs,” says Kendra Banks, Managing Director, SEEK ANZ.

In another sign of recovery, candidates are starting to feel more confident about their job security. New research conducted on behalf of SEEK shows that job security is now slightly higher among candidates than it was before COVID-19 (67% in early May versus 66% in January).

We are also seeing an increase in the number of candidates looking to move on from their current role. This was almost non-existent during the total lockdown period - as people were concerned about job security and were not prepared to take any risk. There was also the perception that there were no jobs out there to apply for.

Talking to clients, they too are starting to feel more optimistic. This can be linked to the easing of COVID-19 restrictions and the ability for them to start planning to return their workforce back to the office – even if it is gradually. Jobs that had been placed on hold, are now being put back on the market, and many employers are using the current situation as an opportunity to recruit new staff to change team dynamics.

And then there is this…. There’s clear water in the Venice canals, blue skies over Delhi, wild animals are roaming boldy in locked-down cities and emissions have fallen sharply.

For now, where possible and where applicable and in accordance with Government regulations, the only requirement is that we continue to move forward – whether it is by an inch or a mile! Hopefully with Victoria tightening some of its lockdown measures again, this doesn’t affect business confidence too much – we will continue to remain positive.

We would love to hear how your businesses are travelling…. Please send us a comment below. Hopefully your own businesses are starting to see the positive change in the market too.

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