It’s a new year, so it’s a time that many people think about trying something new. For you, this might mean exploring new job opportunities. In this article we’ve outlined the best ways to approach finding a new job in 2022.The current state of the market
Firstly, to know how to navigate the job market, it’s important to understand the current conditions.
Last year the market was turbulent because of the pandemic, but by the end of the year the market was strong. The unemployment rate decreased by 0.4 percentage points on the quarter to 4.2 per cent by the end of October. More people were back in work, including those who had been on the furlough scheme until it ended in September.
This general market trend also applied to public sector employment where the number of employees increased in September 2021 by 0.4% in comparison to June.
Yet, at the same time, the number of job vacancies continued to grow as the effects of the pandemic began to soften and organisations looked to expand. Between September and November, the number of opportunities had increased to more than 1.2 million. However, by November the rate of this expansion had begun to slow somewhat.
This increase in vacancies was paired with a skills shortage due to hundreds of thousands of people leaving the workforce during the pandemic, meaning employers struggled to hire new staff.
For jobseekers such as yourself this means that, for now, the market continues to be led by you. Jobseekers have a greater range of opportunities to choose from and have more leverage to demand the conditions they want. Further benefits for jobseekers include increases in starting pay due to the imbalance between supply and demand.How to job search in 2022Update your CV
A straightforward CV that outlines your most relevant and recent experience is key to finding a new job. And although there are plenty of jobs out there, you’ll still be competing with others, so you want to have the best chance of standing out.
Here are some best practice guidelines to follow:Update your CV with your most recent experience and achievements Include up-to-date contact information Add a short profile at the top of your CV outlining your skills and positive attributes Make sure it’s easy to scan (hiring managers and recruiters are busy people) Ensure it’s not longer than 2 pages Don’t include photos Double check your spelling and grammar
Ideally, you should tailor your CV for every job you apply for, but having a good template as a starting point will save you time and can be used if you don’t have time to customise it for a specific vacancy.
When tailoring your CV, read the job description and include relevant keywords that apply to your experience to ensure your CV is searchable in hiring managers’ and recruiters’ systems.
For more guidance on how to write an effective CV, read our full CV writing guide.Write a well-crafted cover letter
A cover letter isn’t always necessary as part of an application. We don’t require them at Morgan Hunt for example. However, other companies or job boards often require them, so it’s worth doing. And even if they’re not necessary, following up your application with a cover letter can be a good way to differentiate yourself from other applicants.
In a nutshell, your cover letter should explain the why behind your application. Why you think you’re right for the job and why you’re interested in that specific role or organisation.
You can read our guide to learn how to write an effective cover letter.Finding the right jobs
Given the number of vacancies out there, there’s more than enough to choose from. So how do you find the best ones, or the ones you’re most suited to? We recommend using a variety of methods to support your search which will give you exposure to all available opportunities and allow you to pick right ones.Make your searches specific
When searching for jobs on Google or other websites, use keywords related to the type of job you want and the responsibilities you’d like to have. Being specific and using more keywords will narrow down the number of results, so you’ll only see the most relevant jobs for you.Use a recruitment agency
Having a recruitment consultant working for you who understands your skills and what you’re looking means you’ll be put forward for suitable roles without having to do the heavy lifting yourself. This can save you a lot of time and effort.
Another benefit is that many employers don’t advertise roles themselves and will exclusively use recruitment agencies, so using an agency can get you access to jobs that are not being advertised.Set up job alerts
Job alerts are another great way to automate your search. Google Jobs alerts are especially useful as they will pull jobs from across the internet and email them to you. To set these up, perform your search in Google Jobs. Next, turn on job alerts at the bottom left of the page.
Many other sites, such as job boards, support job alerts too. You can also sign up to Morgan Hunt job alerts to be notified about the best and most recent public sector jobs.Update your LinkedIn profile
LinkedIn isn’t for everyone or every type of profession, but for most it’s a great way to network with others in your current or desired industry and set yourself up to be contacted about opportunities.
You should update your LinkedIn profile like you would your CV by including your most recent and most relevant experience. With the extra space you have to work with on LinkedIn you can also include information about your specific interests, career aspirations or other skills you have.
All the information you provide in your profile summary and experience is searchable by other people on LinkedIn, so recruiters will be able to find you for relevant vacancies they’re hiring for.Practice for interviews
It goes without saying that to get a job, you will need to interview for it if your application is successful. This is your opportunity to sell yourself, so being confident is important. But interviews can be nerve-wracking, so to avoid making mistakes you will later regret, practice for your interviews.
You should research the company and the role you are applying for, not only to demonstrate your interest in the job, but to help you come up with your own questions for things you’d like to know more about. Asking questions in the interview reflects well on you and will help you decide if the role is what you are looking for.
When it comes to answering their questions, make sure you prepare for general questions beforehand. You will want to provide relevant examples of work you’ve done that match the skills they’re looking for, so make sure you’re familiar with your experience. Writing all your experience out can be a helpful exercise to do this.
Here are some examples of basic interview questions you might face:Tell me about yourself What are your strengths? What are your weaknesses? What do you think makes you right for this job? Where would you like to be in your career five years from now? What attracted you to this company/organisation? Now go find your next job
By applying the tips in this article, you’ll be able to navigate the current job market with ease. Use them and we’re confident that you’ll find the right job for you in no time.
If you are looking for support in your job search and are interested in opportunities within the public sector, why not explore the vacancies we’re currently recruiting for or submit your CV to us through our Quick Drop CV tool – it takes less than a minute.
On 23rd March 2021 Morgan Hunt hosted a webinar on developing an inclusive hiring strategy. We were joined by Amarjit Singh Basi from the Black FE Leadership Group, Ann Allcock from Marshall E-Learning, and Kira van Niekerk from Thomas International.The session covered both the importance of having an inclusive hiring strategy, as well as the practical steps to implementing one. Watch the full recording below.
During the pandemic the market was such that redundancies and furloughing were high, resulting in fewer jobs and more people unemployed. As the grasps of the pandemic slowly lifted, expectations were that market conditions would return to normal. But to the suprise of many, the situation flipped and we are now experiencing a skills shortage in the UK.
Job vacancies in Britain are roughly 20 percent higher than before the pandemic. Employers are on the search for people to fill their open positions, and there are still many seeking work, but the jobs don't align with what people are prepared for or want to do.
The current market conditions were explored further in an article by the New York Times, in which Morgan Hunt's Managing Director, Dan Taylor, provided comment on the situation. When asked about the company's experience as a recruitment agency, he said "This has been a very quick bounce. In six months we went from struggling to find jobs for candidates who are registered with us to a situation where we just can’t find the specific skilled and experienced staff we need".
Image from The New York Times. Photographed by Tom Jamieson for The New York Times.
One example of the difficulties faced by employers is when Morgan Hunt was helping a public housing association hire a senior fire officer. Two people were ready to accept the job, until a department store offered higher pay, causing the candidates to pull out from the senior fire officer position.
The pandemic has affected every part of society, but young people face a particularly uncertain time as they look to enter the job market, come to terms with ongoing furlough or recent redundancy.
Morgan Hunt have partnered with The Youth Group to offer the skills and experiences of our staff to mentor a growing number of young people who are seeking knowledge, advice, and support.
Dan Taylor, Managing Director of Morgan Hunt said “It comes as no surprise that the wonderful Morgan Hunt staff have voluntarily given up their time to help young people. Their experience and listening skills will prove invaluable to young people who may not have access to someone who can help and support them. It is another visible extension of the company’s desire to live our mission by inspiring working lives”.
More information including how you can register to become either a mentor or mentee with The Youth Group can be found on their website.
On 25th March 2021 Morgan Hunt hosted a webinar jobseeker wellbeing and resilience. We were joined by Alastair Smith-Agbaje (CEO of Lambeth & Southwark Mind), Dorothée Bonnigal-Katz (Frontline Clinician at Lambeth & Southwark Mind) and Suzanne Penny (Career Coach and L&D Expert. During the session we shared advice for jobseekers on how they can protect their mental health and remain resilient in their job search. Watch the full recording or read our summary below.
Covid-19 has significantly disrupted the UK job market. As most organisations prepared to meet the challenges of the pandemic, growth plans were halted. Normal hiring levels reduced significantly and restructuring in many organisations led to redundancy for many people. As a result, the competition for available roles has increased dramatically, and it is taking many jobseekers longer to secure work.
Although job markets are beginning to pick up, there are many who are still struggling with their job search. The effect of which cannot be underestimated. The experience of submitting applications for tens (sometimes hundreds) of jobs, attending interviews and facing rejection takes its toll on an individual’s wellbeing and ability to stay motivated.
As a jobseeker it is important to take care of your wellbeing and mental health so that you can continue to perform at your best. If you are showing up to interviews stressed, anxious and defeated, it’s more likely that it won’t go the way you hope. You’re far more likely to make mistakes and not communicate the value you can bring to your potential employer. So what can jobseekers do to ensure they don’t burn out?Dealing with stress and anxiety
As well as feeling stressed or anxious, you are likely feeling tired from your job search. When you feel this way, the best thing may be to take a short break. It is important not to put too much pressure on yourself and to listen to what your body is telling you it needs. However, if you decide to take a break, you should still retain some structure and routine to your days. This will help you to still feel productive and positive. It also ensures you don’t lose your momentum. Don’t forget to include healthy habits like exercising and socialising with others.
Dorothée Bonnigal-Katz, who is a frontline clinician for Lambeth & Southwark mind, highly recommends doing something creative as an antidote to stress and anxiety. Having a creative outlet puts you on the side of love and life, helping to enrich and bring positive emotions into your day.Dealing with rejection
Rejection takes its toll on us as individuals. It makes us question our self-worth and if we’ll ever make it. But it’s important not to dwell on these feelings.
If you were made redundant, remember that it is not a reflection of your skills and expertise. It was the role that was made redundant, not you, so have confidence on your ability. If you were rejected after an interview, know that you were invited to the interview for a reason. Someone saw something in your ability, which should give you confidence.
Viewing the interview as a learning experience can help change your perspective too. Focus on the elements of the rejection that you can control by using feedback to identify areas of growth and improvement.
If you have faced numerous rejection, you may want to take some time out to deal with the feelings of stress and anxiety, as well as build up your resilience again.Building your resilience
Resilience is a resource which we build up and is then drained through the challenges we face. When we feel our resilience is low, we know that we need to take the time to build it up again.
The origin of the word comes from Latin, meaning both rebounding and recoiling. Resilience is our ability to bounce back, but in order to do so we must recoil from time to time. To do this, take a break from the tasks that have been draining you. Remember and reflect on positive reinforcement you have received from others. This will be help you rebuild your sense of value and self-worth.
Negative thoughts, which come as a result of stress, have an impact on how we feel and behave. But improving your mood can be as simple as telling yourself positive stories and affirmationsHow to remain positive when job searching and interviewing
After having many knockbacks and feeling like you’re not progressing, it can be difficult to remain positive and determined in your job search. To combat negative thoughts that might arise, try creating a mind map of testimonials and positive comments you have received. Refer back to this whenever you need a confidence boost.
Remember that although you have may have receive rejections, you have been invited to interviews because the hiring managers like what they see. With this in mind, try to relax in interviews and focus on emphasising the elements of your CV that your interviewer liked. And don’t forget to be prepared for your interviews. With preparation comes confidence.
Lastly, if you’re feeling anxious in an interview, view it is an opportunity to see if the organisation is a right fit for you. By changing your perspective, the interview becomes an opportunity for you to find the right fit for you. You’ll then feel enabled to have a relaxing conversation about what both you and the organisation bring to the table to determine if it’s a good fit.
By applying the tips above to stay positive and resilient in your search, your chances of getting the job will be improved as you’ll be able to bring your best self to your interviews. However, a positive mindset isn’t all you need to stand out in a competitive market. Here are some tips on how to improve your chances of getting the job:Refresh your CV on job boards every 7 – 14 days. This will improve your chances of being found by recruiters and employers. Join groups on LinkedIn Join a job search group Network with others in your industry Take online course and develop key skills Do some volunteering to fill your time and gain experience Do some form of interview and career coaching
Overall, it’s important to stay positive and hopeful. A negative mentality will not help you to achieve your goals. Pay attention to the areas that you can improve and listen to yourself if you feel like you need a break. Good luck!
If you’d like to speak to a recruiter for career guidance or help finding your next role, get in touch.
On 24th February 2021 Morgan Hunt hosted a webinar on the power of team coaching titled ‘Building inclusive teams for growth’. We were joined by team coaching experts Lucy Widdowson and Paul J Barbour, who shared how team coaching can be used to develop inclusive teams which benefit from increased performance.. Read the summary of the webinar below or watch the full recording at the bottom of this page:
Following the events of 2020, the importance of diversity and inclusion for organisations is being recognised more and more. Organisations are becoming actively engaged in building diverse and inclusive workplaces as a result of demands from staff for greater representation, but also due to the proven benefits for organisations. Benefits include:Winning the battle for talent Improving employee satisfaction Improving the quality of decision making Increasing innovation and customer insight Improving the company’s brand image 33% higher profitability (McKinsey, 2018)
It is clear that, for organisations, there is a lot to be gained, but how can improved diversity and inclusion be achieved? There are several factors that influence the diversity and inclusion of a workplace, but Lucy Widdowson and Paul J Barbour suggest developing more inclusive teams through team coaching is a good place to start.
When we talk about the diversity and inclusivity of teams, what do we mean? Diversity describes how team members are different from each other, improving the range of ideas and perspective brought to the table. Inclusivity, however, describes the style of interaction (the actions and strategies) that help people feel included, which is essential for effective teams and organisations. Diversity improves the variance of ideas, but inclusivity is what enables these thoughts to be shared.
The diversity of teams can be improved through recruitment, whereas inclusivity can only be built through a focus on the interpersonal relationships of teams. In order for team members to feel included, psychological safety and trust must exist within the group. Individuals must believe that the group is a safe place for interpersonal risk taking. Only then can members feel truly comfortable to contribute and share their ideas.
So how can inclusivity be improved? In the team coaching sessions that Lucy and Paul run with organisations throughout the world, they work with teams to develop empathy and to determine the shared purpose, values and beliefs of the group. Empathy leads to understanding and having shared goals ensures the group moves together in the same direction. One exercise they encourage people to use to build empathy is to watch the news, then try to understand a person who has an opposing view to you and think about what you would say to them.What is team coaching?
“Coaching that helps teams work together, with others and within their wider environment, to create lasting change by developing safe trusting relationships, better ways of working and new thinking, so that they maximise their collective potential, purpose and performance goals”
Building psychological safety and trust can be achieved through a number of team coaching methods and exercises. Through their work, Lucy and Paul have defined 7 characteristics of high performing teams. These are:Purpose – (Why do we do what we do/ who do we serve) Identity – (How do we want to be known) Values & Beliefs – (What do we need to value and believe in to achieve our purpose?) Awareness – (How aware the team is of how they interact with the rest of the business and what the areas of development within the team are) Relatedness – (Psychological safety, building relationships, trust, enabling open and honest conversations) Ways of working – (The processes and rhythm of the team e.g. decision-making effectiveness) Transformation – (How the team continues to learn, grow and innovate)
For improving inclusivity, Lucy and Paul recommend focussing on the awareness and relatedness. Here are some exercises you can use to maximise these characteristics:Have everyone say something at the beginning of a meeting Practice ‘non-violent communication’ (This means listening beyond what people say to understand people’s needs) Practice conversational turn taking, which increases collective intelligence and team performance Encourage more positive conversations by replacing “but” with “yes, and” to build on people’s ideas rather than shutting them down People are naturally averse to feedback so before challenging someone’s point make sure they feel supported
Paul and Lucy also suggest using scenarios to open honest conversations about how people would respond. Through this people can feel safe to share without judgement, as well as be corrected if their response could be improved. Here are some scenarios for you to use and discuss with your teams:Scenario 1
Amy in a team meeting uses an incorrect terminology for a colleague in another team saying ‘Jo the blind person’. What do you do?Scenario 2
Every time Amin makes a suggestion, another team member Tom ignores them and speaks over them. What do you do?Scenario 3
You have a culture of all going to lunch together when in the office or spending time chatting informally when working virtually at the end of the day on a Friday. Ray doesn’t join in. What do you do?
By applying some of the techniques, you can begin to create more trust within your teams which will improve communication and performance. If you would like to learn more about team coaching and how it can be used to develop high performing teams, Lucy and Paul recently published their first book titled “Building top performing teams”. You can purchase a copy via the links below.
Kogan PageAmazonPurchase through local US & UK book stores
On 27th January 2021 Morgan Hunt delivered a webinar on diversity and inclusion titled 'Celebrating different perspectives - Why diversity matters'. We were joined by diversity and inclusion experts Carmen Morris, Amarjit Singh Basi and Hannah Manyewu to outline the benefits of diverse and inclusive workplaces, the challenges facing the implementation of D&I and how these challenges can be overcome. See a summary of the webinar below or watch the full recording at the bottom of this page:
Diversity and inclusion have been at the forefront of many people's and organisation's minds since the events of 2020. The Black Lives Matter movement shone a light on the importance of equality for all people in all areas of life. The need to be treated equally is vital within the workplace, as it's a place where people spend most of their days and lives.
In our webinar, our speakers outlined that there are many benefits to be gained from creating diverse and inclusive workplaces. Fostering these kinds of professional environments helps people feel more comfortable. As a result, they are more engaged in their work and with the people around them. Collaboration improves, as does their productivity and effectiveness. As a whole, job satisfaction increases, barriers that in the past made work difficult are reduced and the performance of all employees is boosted.
It's hard to argue against improving the wellbeing of your employees, but there are many benefits to organisations too. Improved employee effectiveness and productivity improves the overall performance of the business. Many studies have shown there is a strong positive correlation between diversity and inclusion and business success. Beyond this, D&I practices foster strong and supportive cultures that people want to work in. It makes retaining talent and attracting skilled people to your organisation much easier.
But how do you begin improving diversity and inclusion? It has to start with senior leadership and management. Boards must authentically buy into the need to improve and understand the challenges that the least privileged people in their organisations face. This requires leaders and managers in an organisation to speak to the people affected and take the time to hear about their lived experiences, the barriers they face and any areas of improvement they have identified.
But the role of leadership doesn't stop there. Next, they must put what they have learnt to action. Improving diversity and inclusion is about creating a change in culture which must be driven from the top down to be authentic. Representing marginalised groups within management is an important step that ensures all perspectives are heard and considered.
Leaders and management aren't alone though. Setting the culture requires buy in and support from all functions of the business. Management must take ownership of this process and invest in the development of staff at all levels. Through this, employees throughout the organisation will gain the knowledge and understanding to make this change in culture effective and, most importantly, permanent.
In the past year we have seen an increase in the number of diversity and inclusion job roles. The creation of positions with this specific focus signals a promising commitment to improvement, however it is important that these appointments are not just tokenistic. These job roles must be thought out and organisations should at least have some understanding of their areas of improvement or what they want to achieve. Otherwise, businesses risk destroying any credibility they have in wanting to promote diversity and inclusion.
For people in these roles, there are a number of factors that will determine their success. Most importantly you should have a direct line of communication to the board or senior leadership team. If this doesn't exist, it is unlikely your role will have the impact that is needed to create change within the organisation. D&I advocate Hannah Manyewu suggests that your definition of success should be based on achieving results through others. Your aim should be to mobilise internal groups across all functions, build momentum and interest in improving D&I and ultimately hold leadership accountable.
Recruitment is also critical in creating diverse and inclusive workplaces. Hiring people from different backgrounds shows a commitment to improving the diversity of the workforce and brings in new perspectives and ideas which can help an organisation thrive. To practice inclusive recruitment, businesses should understand their employer brand and how it is perceived by potential applicants. Through this you gain insight into how you may have to improve how you communicate your employer value proposition to appeal to a diverse range of applicants. Fair and unbiased recruitment methods such as psychometric testing and blind application reviews are also useful tools to make the hiring process as inclusive as possible.
Since last year we have seen a lot of progress, but it is just the beginning. It is important to acknowledge that change doesn't happen overnight, but organisations must begin taking the steps to create more diverse and inclusive environments. Our speakers Carmen, Amarjit and Hannah hope that in the next year we will continue to see more leadership and executive roles filled by people with diverse characteristics, increased publicly visible commitment to the cause and real accountability to change through evidence and case studies.
Find out how you can improve internal diversity and create inclusive workplaces. Contact Clare Keniry, Head of Diversity & Inclusion at Morgan Hunt – [email protected]
At Morgan Hunt we welcome and celebrate different perspectives to help our organisation, our clients and our people achieve long lasting results. We are committed to promoting racial and social equality both within our own business and our broader community.
We understand what a crucial role the recruitment process plays in attracting diverse talent to any organisation. We want to work with you to make every step of this process as consciously inclusive as possible.
The objective of this webinar series is to support organisations to attract the best diverse talent, practise inclusive talent selection throughout the recruitment process and to retain diverse talent by building an inclusive culture.Our Upcoming SessionsWellbeing & Resilience: Advice for jobseekersThursday 25th March
Get advice and tips from wellbeing professionals at Mind Lambeth & Southwark and career coach, Suzanne Penny, to help you stay resilient in your job search
Speakers: Alastair Smith-Agbaje, Dorothée Bonnigal-Katz & Suzanne PennyREGISTER NOWAttracting diverse talent to your organisation with inclusive recruitment methodsDate to be confirmedCOMING SOONRetaining & developing diverse talent to build an inclusive cultureDate to be confirmedCOMING SOONOur Completed SessionsCelebrating different perspectives – Why diversity matters
In our first webinar in the series we dicussed the need for diversity and inclusion and why it should matter to all organisations. Topics covered included: the benefits D&I provides, the current challenges in creating diverse and inclusive cultures and how these challenges can be overcome.
Speakers: Carmen Morris, Amarjit Singh BasiREAD SUMMARYBuilding inclusive teams for growth
Learn how team coaching can be used to create more inclusive, open and collaborative teams which improve performance and wellbeing
Speakers: Lucy Widdowson, Paul J BarbourREAD SUMMARY
Children and young people across the UK have had their lives turned upside down by the coronavirus pandemic. Almost every young person has had to adjust to dramatic changes in their education or employment, routine and home life. So it's important that as individuals and organisations we understand those challenges. And even more so important that we know how to support young people through them.
On October 13th Morgan Hunt hosted the webinar 'Youth Mental Health during Covid-19: How to support under 25s', helping to increase awareness of this issue and provide a learning opportunity for attendees. The online session was hosted by Clare Keniry, Technology Recruitment Director at Morgan Hunt. We were joined by guest speakers David Beeney and Jack Parsons.David Beeney
David is the Founder of Breaking the Silence. He has established himself as one of leading advisers in the UK on how to drive employee engagement through an effective wellbeing programme.
In 2018, David was proud to have been listed in the top 101 influencers globally on employee engagement, he is also a qualified Mental Health Counsellor affiliated to the BACP (British Association of Counsellors and Practitioners) and a Trustee for mind.
He specialises in creating cultures of trust that are free from the stigma of mental health that are all inclusive.Jack Parsons
Jack Parsons is an award-winning young entrepreneur, public speaker and subject expert on Youth and is publicly known as the UK’s Chief Youth Officer.
Jack has been honoured awards over the last 3 years including Young Digital Leader Of The Year, The 100 Faces of a Vibrant Economy, Most Connected Young Entrepreneur, 50 Top kindest leaders and Top 10 UK Young Entrepreneurs to Watch.
Jack's personal mission is to knock down doors for others to walk through after having a tough upbringing and lack of career support from the school, learning from failure and being motivated to make a real impact for young people.
Jack is currently the CEO of The Youth Group which is building the world’s largest most connected marketplace and community for young people with one aim: to help improve the odds for young people across the Commonwealth to achieve their full potential in work.
In addition to running The Youth Group Jack advises a number of organisations and figure heads on young people, including governments.Key Learnings
Young people are just as concerned about their futures as they are about their current situation
Individuals and organisations need to lead the way in normalising and encouraging conversations around mental health
Cultures need to be created where young people feel comfortable being themselves
Look for any change of behaviour in young people you know as this might signify that they're struggling with their mental health
To initiate a conversation, ask genuinley how they are doing. Asking how someone is feeling out of 10 makes it easier for the person to give a clear idea of how they are.
Sharing your own struggles and vulnerabilities gives others permission and comfort to share theirs
Plan to have others with specific expertise around when a conversation about somone's mental health becomes more serious. Saying the wrong thing in this situation could be dangerous
You can watch a recording of the full webinar below.