Between us, we have years of experience of recruiting leading marketing talent for some of the best companies around. In our regular blogs, we’ll aim to give you an insight into how the world of work, works…

What transfer deadline day can teach us about recruitment

For football fans everywhere January represents a chance for your club to transform their fortunes with an inspirational new signing. Unfortunately, as the Sky Sports News team prepare to don their yellow ties, hope often turns to despair when yet another overpaid also ran fails to make the impact that your manager promised.

While football definitely exists in its own bubble, the fortunes of the 92 professional clubs also demonstrate some broader business truths – first and foremost that people are the lifeblood of all organisations. If you don’t have the talent you simply can’t compete – just ask Aston Villa fans!

Just like trying to find a striker who guarantees 30 goals a season – trying to attract the top marketing talent into your organisation can be an uphill struggle. The entire market is hunting for the same skills and attributes as you – digital, SEO, PPC, customer experience, Product Management represent just some of the specialties where demand outstrips supply. It’s vital to understand these market dynamics before commencing your search for the next game-changing addition to your team.

Recruiting in this environment is about compromise and mind-set. The market is jam packed with roles that have floated around for several weeks or months. These positions stick out like a sore thumb to candidates and quickly pickup metaphorical ‘warning’ tags to potential new applicants.

So where does the fault lie when after countless CVs reviewed and multiple rounds of interviews a business has failed to identify that superstar player. Well in my opinion, if you’ve reached this recruitment impasse you have two key questions to ask yourself –

1) Has your attraction process been considered & strategic enough to attract the best? (and briefing 5 different agencies is a guarantee that this isn’t the case!)

2) Are you looking for reasons to recruit or reasons not to recruit?

Point two is often the most salient – I see organisations reject fantastic candidates on only the most minor of concerns and the hope that someone better will come up if they continue searching. This search for absolute perfection and unwillingness to take a risk and invest in potential invariably leads to unfilled roles and your competitors cashing in on your hesitation.

Just as with football, businesses must recruit based on ability, potential and attitude rather than in hope of instant results. There is some fantastic talent out there and with the right mind-set going into a selection process you can build a winning team for the future!


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