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How Recruitment is affected by Coronavirus

21 Mar 2020

It feels as if the UK is coming to a halt - many industries have stopped trading: pubs, restaurants, gyms, theatres, and lots of people are already out of work, or in a massively vulnerable position because of coronavirus. 

So, what's happening with recruitment? Is anyone recruiting during the pandemic? 

The short answer - yes! 

Clearly those industries affected by the coronavirus will have stopped all hiring activity. But, look at where other industries are thriving because of the behaviours of the general UK population. 

Stuck at home for the most part, people are online: shopping, gaming, gambling, sorting out their much ignored admin or researching how to handle home-schooling for the kids. If they are heading out, they are shopping for groceries and essentials to keep stocked up for the forseeable future.  

Industry leaders know every business will be affected somehow by this virus, many in a bad way, but some in a good way, financially at least.  Those leaders know life will return to normal at some point. People will still plan for retirement, decide to move elsewhere, and make decisions to move on from their employers. So, plans for recruitment still have to be in place. 

There are still hundreds of thousands of jobs vacant in the UK.  Many, as you would expect, can't be filled right now because a sector has ground to a halt, but many others can and will be recruited to. 

Those employers who can't appoint just yet are holding off on giving start dates but making offers nonetheless. Some employers are starting people in their roles because contractually they feel they must, but are not giving the employees any work because of the situation caused by coronavirus. 

But, there are employers with vacant roles who are advertising, interviewing and appointing people to start work, and for the most part, they're doing it remotely.  Technology nowadays allows interviews to take place by video, and it works! OK, you can't shake hands at the start of end of it, but the conversation can take place, eye contact can be made, skills can be assessed and people are still being offered new jobs. 

So, how can they start work? 

Sensible employers who have been meticulously planning have now reached the stage where new recruits can start adding value. They can be onboarded remotely if necessary - video tools such as Zoom or Microsoft Teams are playing a vital role in this, and people are feeling positive about the experience.  And then of course there are some employers who have enough meaures in place to bring people into a workplace safely from time to time. 

Recruitment, onboarding and training is happening in office-based roles, customer service type call-centre roles, finance, admin and all other sorts of jobs where employers have the technology to onboard and train their staff remotely, and allow them to be effective employees despite the virus. Communication tools are playing a vital part in ensuring new starts feel part of the team, and feel valued by their employer, and employers are starting to find that fixing someone to a desk, in an office, isn't as necessary as they had thought! 

So, if you're feeling despondent about starting a new career search, then don't. There are opportunities, work still needs to happen and jobs still need to be done! Have a look online to see what's around for you - we have over 100,000 jobs listed across the UK and in all sectors.  There's no harm in looking! Click here to see all jobs at