Rory Strong - Director, DMJ Recruitment
It’s safe to say as we bring 2021 to a close, that it has been a year like no other for companies across every sector. In the aftermath of what has been one of the most socially and economically uncertain periods in living memory businesses have celebrated some success by first putting out fires and then emerging from the ashes of the year with profit and great growth trajectory. Throughout 2021, the job market has also restored itself to a state of great buoyancy with the employers making up for the hiring freeze of 2020.
There is an assumption among candidates that nearing Christmas the market winds down and few are looking to interview or hire; when in reality, the opposite is often the case. Recruitment is enjoying a busy end to the year as, particularly, inhouse companies are recognizing the vacancies that need filling and the lack of time to organize their teams and strengthen them for the new year. With so many vacancies begging for successful solicitors to fill them, the question remains: do the symptoms of this craze aid or hinder the recruiter’s role?
From our perspective as legal recruiters, the hiring craze seems to be producing a mix of positive and negative effects. The rush to fill vacancies lends itself to quicker feedback on candidates, leading to the higher likelihood of retaining them through several interview stages and keeping them warm on a more constricted timeline. Funnily enough the deeply embedded concept of resolutions for the new year tends to also programme people to believe that a new year is a significantly enough time for their next opportunity – prompting more enthusiasm from the candidates’ ends to make changes they too had otherwise procrastinated.
However, the urgency to source the best talent has increased as well from the clients’ end, leading recruiters to hope and pray that candidates will respond to our emails or messages quickly, or better yet, answer the phone, at one of the busiest times of the year. Let’s not forget that all companies are bringing their years to a close, candidates having to expediate work that otherwise will plague them over the holidays, if not properly completed. Not to mention, wanting to take the annual leave they have left over from another year spent waiting for travel restrictions to lift and opportunities to arise. This December people barely seem to be in the office; and when they are, they aren’t leisurely scrolling through emails, sipping gingerbread lattes.
What then is the December hiring crazy – a gift or a nightmare? Ultimately, more activity in the market is a gift, and one that demands celebration. Though filling the many, many vacancies seem to include a few extra seasonal hurdles, our jobs as recruiters is to persevere, and we certainly are striving to do so – if not motivated by the hope of refining and furthering our careers, then by the thought of the extra few gifts our commission can get our loved ones, but I digress... To all recruiters, candidates, and clients alike out there – how have you found the December hiring craze? Gift or nightmare?