A look at the most popular ways to recruit

Reviewing CV in an interview

What is the most popular way to recruit?

The UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES) has carried out its regular Employer Perspectives Survey (EPS). Released this month the survey provides an interesting insight into the recruiting habits of 18,000 employers including their perspective on first time job seekers leaving education.

Since the last survey in 2012 the percentage of employers with at least one vacancy has risen 1% to 49% with Non-Market Services, Accommodation and Transport recruiting the highest number of employees.

Interestingly a high proportion of those questioned used private recruitment through mostly free channels including their company website, recommendations or internal advertising. The most popular was word of mouth with a staggering 30% of employers recruiting this way.

It comes as no surprise that the size of company reflects on the preferred recruitment route, with smaller companies choosing to use free channels including Job Centres and Government Schemes.

Larger employers enjoyed a wider range of recruitment channels with dedicated recruitment budgets possibly playing a part in this.

Getting young people their first job following education is high on the agenda for the Government and there seems to be some improvement in this area with 66% of employers taking on someone under the age of 25. A high number of employers also found that 8 in 10 of university graduates were well prepared for the work environment which goes against the common misconception that they are ill-equipped for the world of work.

As the age of retirement rises, more people are working longer, but worryingly there seems to be some discrimination of this age group as only 3 in 10 employers recruited someone over the age of 50.

Social media has been heralded as one of the top recruitment tools. Using LinkedIn to network with candidates is seen as the way forward but this isn’t reflected in the results with just 4% of employers using social media to recruit under 25’s, a core market you would expect to use this platform.

It’s not a revelation that the most popular way to recruit depends on company size and budget, and free channels are always going to be depended on heavily by smaller businesses. The big surprise was the low take up of social media, candidates are encouraged to maintain a high social media profile but if employers aren’t using it as a recruitment resource, candidates’ efforts could be in vain when targeting some businesses.

As a recruiter we would recommend using the tools that are available to you as effectively as possible, but if you have a limited budget making sure that you have a well written job description and a company careers page on your website is important as 21% of new employees are still recruited this way.

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