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.
Today Morgan Hunt unveils its new branding and website. The new brand replaces a visual identity that has been the face of the company for over 15 years. The new brand reflects who we are as a business, the people within it and how we work today.
Our new website brings with it a fresh, easy-to-use interface and new features, which gives candidates the tools to find the right job and for clients to find out about the full suite of solutions that Morgan Hunt offer.Why the change?
A lot has changed over the last 15 years, that rate of change has particularly intensified over the last 7 months. The modern and inclusive imagery reflects Morgan Hunt’s standing within its markets. It positions the business as the recruitment partner supporting jobseekers that look for a sense of purpose in the work they do. We connect them with organisations that can give them purpose and help them realise their potential, in an environment that reflects their values and allows them to make a difference.
The website augments this message, enabling us to share our story and our services in an engaging way. The site is modern and bright, but most importantly it provides important information to job seekers and employers, as well as a powerful job search function to help our customers find the most relevant and suitable job vacancies for them.
Having a person’s profession as the main search category supports our belief that many skills within the public, private and not for profit sectors are transferable. We trust this will encourage people to explore opportunities that they might not normally consider, whilst making it easy for jobseekers to find the jobs they are familiar with.What does our new brand mean?
The rebrand brings with it a huge visual change. This includes a new logo, colour scheme and visual language.
Our new logo acknowledges our heritage in its design as it is a modernised take on our previous mark. The upward pointing lines represent how we have changed, but the familiar square element symbolises that the family values that the organisation was built upon are still present. The outer lines create an arrow but can also be interpreted as ripples. These signify a strive towards progress, innovation and creating positive change for our clients, customers and the wider community.Our Mission Statement: Inspiring working lives through purpose and opportunity
The change goes much further than just the visuals. We truly believe that when we place someone in a job where they add value and have purpose, their role is more fulfilling. The needs of our candidates and clients are the most important thing to us and we aim to provide both with solutions that inspire them and enable them to inspire others around them too. We are proud to help organisations find the talent they need to grow and make a difference. And we are privileged to help talented individuals make a difference and build meaningful careers.
Managing Director, Dan Taylor commented,“Our new brand authentically communicates the business we are today. It is bright and bold and reflects the passion that our people have for making a positive difference in their work, in supplying organisations with expert staff to help them achieve their goals”.
If you’d like to find out more how we can support you as a jobseeker looking for your next role, or as an organisation seeking the right talent, please email us at [email protected]
Morgan Hunt’s Managing Director, Dan Taylor, appeared on BBC News yesterday evening to discuss the recent fall in employment figures. As a follow up to that interview, Dan shares with us some further comments about the outlook of the current job market.Taylor comments – “In the world of rolling, wall to wall news its really hard to get across the nuances of such a complex situation, here are some of the key points to contemplate when evaluating the recent employment figures".
British Chamber of Commerce data suggests that 29% of British firms are planning to reduce headcount over the coming months. That information needs to be tempered against the fact that 59% of firms plan to retain their staff and 12% are looking to expand.
Furthermore, 25% of all companies are looking to hire through this period, a mixture of expansion and replacing staff.
The Association of Professional Staffing Companies (APSCo) also reports that despite the seasonal low hiring activity across July and August, the number of interviews taking place in July was 6% up from June. Morgan Hunt forecasts that that increase will continue month on month until the end of the year.
The number of people employed in contract or temporary roles in July increased by 7%.
Taylor adds, “Whilst this is a challenging market, plenty of roles and opportunities exist. And this picture is likely to improve as we move into the Autumn.”Given the current climate, how candidates prepare themselves for opportunities in the job market is essential. Over the coming days, Dan will elaborate on what candidates need to do to maximise their chances of success, which we will share via the Morgan Hunt LinkedIn page.Share this content with anyone you think might need it and follow us on LinkedIn for further job search advice.
We are now over 3 months into lockdown and as we consider how business may change drastically in the future, we took the opportunity to reflect on what changes we have experienced as a result of Covid-19 so far. We spoke with our Head of IT, Gezanfar Masud, about how he and his team successfully enabled Morgan Hunt employees to work remotely in only a matter of weeks.The Challenge
Mobilising a centralised workforce of 200 people within an organisation with a culture of office working. Only a handful of staff had ever worked remotely and home based working was usually authorised on a case by case basis with a fairly strict policy. Therefore, for most staff, this was a brand new experience and they had numerous questions around how they access systems, telephony, the CRM etc. In addition to this (because of the fact that Morgan Hunt did not have a mobile workforce) we had very limited resources in the form of loan laptops and mobile phones, which would allow people to work from home. Most people had a laptop at home that was fit for purpose, but many users own Apple Mac’s which was unsupported with our Citrix workspace environment. However, we overcame this technical challenge with a workaround. Morgan Hunt also extended a loan fund for staff to purchase a suitable laptop device to allow them to work from home. Our Managing Director, Dan Taylor, allowed us as the IT experts to lead this project and our COO, Keith Widdowson, was recently appointed and very new to the organisation. Keith had many questions around how people would work remotely and how to access systems etc, he offered good advice regarding collaboration and BCP. Fortunately, by design we have ensured that staff can access systems remotely and most of the necessary ‘how to’ documentation already was available. I had to create new documents for our newer systems i.e. Telephony. Although we communicated to our user base at an early stage via emails and by directing staff to our knowledgebase, the uptake was slow as staff were waiting for direction from the Senior Management Team (SMT). There remained significant uncertainty as to whether or not the office would be closed as the SMT awaited official government guidance. Once the announcement was made, the IT Team had a huge influx of tickets and staff who wanted telephony and remote access set up for them. The team performed admirably to get this done under pressure. We held an IT surgery for all staff to attend and we addressed any questions or configurational issues with devices or user set up.The Solution
We granted users remote access using our External Citrix Gateway. As part of our testing phase a few days beforehand, we asked various teams across our business to work from home to test performance. Feedback was not great to begin with and I engaged with our Citrix experts at Soft Cat who advised that our gateway could not handle 200 users due to bandwidth restrictions. As a result, we invested in a more powerful gateway which can handle the increase in bandwidth and additional traffic. This now offers a seamless and improved user experience. Feedback was positive as the changes were instant. Implementation of the solution was straightforward and the fact that we have inhouse Citrix skills was highly valuable at this time.The Benefits
Decentralizing the workforce was no mere task, but the fact that this is something that us in the IT Team embed in our service design made this process much easier for us to execute. I always knew that we had the capability and tools already in place to do this. Our change was not so much a technological shift, but more of a cultural shift, which was adopted due to the unprecedented situation that we all find ourselves in with this Coronavirus pandemic. In a way, it was a catalyst. Our success meant that all Sales and Support staff have access to their full desktops, network resources and telephony via our hosted telephone platform; NFON. Had this occurred 6 months ago, we would have been in a bit of a tight situation and it would certainly have taken longer to deploy. The fact that we mobilised so quickly meant that we potentially had the edge over our competitors who may have been in earlier phases. Continuous service improvement is in the heart of everything that we do. The next phase for me is to roll out or newer Citrix environment which will allow improved collaboration and better performance. I will also be improving the security posture of our environment, which is secure, but we always strive to do more.Lessons & Takeaways
I would have liked to have deployed the mobile telephone app in a staged manner with better testing, however, the timeline did not permit this so we were forced to do a big bang approach. However, that said it has worked for most users. This is still one area that needs some more work to get the service to the high standards that I expect for my user base. I am working tirelessly with our suppliers to achieve this. I think we need to invest in mobile working as a whole and provide our user base with the necessary resources to work outside of Citrix using our VPN. This will allow them to use local resources on their laptops/computers which they currently find challenging due to restrictions that we have imposed within Citrix as a result of security and company policy. All of our suppliers were very supportive and acted professionally to our sometimes reactive demands. This is down to the fact that we treat all of our supplier relationships as a partnership which brings out the best in everyone. Special thanks to BtL, Access Alto, Soft Cat, Blue Saffron and all of my colleagues and staff at Morgan Hunt who have been very supportive throughout.
We are digitally prepared for any upcoming challenges and we’re very much open for business, dedicated to supporting our clients, candidates and internal employees thrive in these unprecedented times.
One way we're continuing to offer the highest levels of service and work responsibly is by offering teleconferencing and Skype interviewing for candidates and clients. Essentially we’re ready to partner and support you in your search for a new job or a new employee, whatever the circumstances. Dan Taylor, Managing Director, says:
"These are uncertain times for businesses but we're dedicated to maintaining our work and support for our clients, candidates and internal employees to the best of our ability. We're offering reassurance and guidance in what can only be described as a totally unique situation and we're constantly monitoring updates and advice from the government to ensure safe and sensible practice."
Our operations will continue to run as normal, so please don't hesitate to contact us if you need our help and assistance.
The College awarded its exclusive recruitment contract for the provision of temporary and permanent staff to Morgan Hunt, a specialist recruiter to the public sector.The contract was awarded through a tendering process with the Crescent Purchasing Consortium (CPC). The CPC is a purchasing group designed to ensure organisations, including Further Education Colleges, can engage with suppliers who have already proven themselves to offer best value for money, provide efficiencies and demonstrate sector expertise. Morgan Hunt has a long track record in attracting and finding professionals for Further Education institutions. From operational roles to academic and senior positions. This heritage and deep understanding of hiring for staff across all grades and functions was important for its appointment on this occasion. The College has an enviable reputation as one of London’s most successful colleges and in its most recent Oftsed inspection, the College was judged to be ‘Good’ in all that they do. It was important therefore to continue to access the best staff to uphold their great status and continue its journey to ‘Outstanding’.
Luke O’Neill, Education Director at Morgan Hunt, said; “Our recruiting and sourcing teams are not only working to ensure we attract those with the required skills but we are also mindful that we meet the important requirement of ensuring the institution remains as an ‘inclusive college’. We work to attract candidates from neighbourhoods in the proximity of the College to reflect the diverse nature of the local community”. Lynne Griffin, HR Executive at Waltham Forest College adds “Employees are central to our organisation and having the right people in place, underpins our success. Our mission is to deliver outstanding technical and professional learning, which raises aspirations, develops skills and creates futures. Partnering with a specialist recruiter empowers us to efficiently and proactively attract talented people to our organisation”. Lynne further comments; “As a centre of learning and being amongst the top 3 biggest employers within the borough we have an active role to play by offering our students and employees access to opportunities that are both inspiring and beneficial. The College is a great place to work with benefits that appeal to people with different motivations and life circumstances. We work to enhance our employees’ personal development, health, wellbeing and finances. After all, we are located in the London Borough of Waltham Forest who has been awarded the first ever London Borough of Culture, from the Mayor of London”.
We are proud that the Institute of Fundraising (IoF) has agreed a partnership with Morgan Hunt to exclusively provide a free year’s Individual Membership to this forward-thinking body. This offer is available for all candidates who successfully secure a new permanent fundraising role through Morgan Hunt’s recruitment service and is valid from the 1st July 2019.*
“We approached the Institute of Fundraising with the proposal of providing our candidates with a great on boarding gift in the form of a year’s membership to this great organisation. We know from our work in other sectors that access to the latest best practice, a network of industry peers, tools and guidance encourages professional development and fosters a collective sense of duty to their sector. The response so far from the fundraising professionals we speak to on a daily basis has been extremely positive.” comments Frazer Thouard, Director, Morgan Hunt.
“For the employers Morgan Hunt work with, this further confirms our sector expertise and commitment to finding them the best calibre talent to deliver value to their clients and end users.”, adds Thouard.
Adam Bryan, Director of Partnerships and Innovation, the Institute of Fundraising explains “As the professional membership body for UK fundraising, this initiative champions our goal of supporting fundraisers through leadership and representation; best practice and compliance; education and networking. Working with Morgan Hunt helps us reach the many candidates who turn to this recruiter to continue their fundraising career. Signing up to a membership when embarking on a new role will set them up with the right support to make a great success of their next position.”
If you are a fundraiser looking for a new permanent opportunity please get in touch with our fundraising recruitment team on 0207 419 8900 or email [email protected]
*Terms and conditions apply
On the 9th May 2019, Morgan Hunt welcomed David Beeney, from the mental health consultancy firm ‘Breaking the Silence’ to discuss with HR professionals how to approach offering support for mental health needs within an organisation. With 4 out of 10 suicides reported as unexpected from people who know the victim, poor mental health can go unnoticed until it is too late.David has first-hand experience of being an employee hiding his struggles with his mental health across a 30 year career in the training sector. He gave real life examples to illustrate just how an employee’s feelings can materialise in non verbal ways. It could be manifest as a person finding it difficult to speak in a public environment, not completing tasks or just doing things differently to their usual style.The workplace may not be the source of anxiety but may exacerbate feelings of stress or being overwhelmed. Employers have a duty of care and, in most cases, managers within organisations want to help a member of their team but many people mask their problems and fear appearing vulnerable in their professional life. David explained some key ideas around positively helping employees to share their anxiety and advice for HR about working with them to improve wellbeing and offering assistance.What are the signs to look out for?
Nonverbal cues are very important. When individuals feel mentally unwell, they may change their behaviour. It can be avoiding situations, becoming less responsive, appearing distant or not actively listening, for example. If the employee has been in the organisation for an amount of time, changes may be more subtle. What we say and how we express ourselves in words also has a role. A person may have become more aggressive or indeed the reverse. They may avoid conversations or keep their interactions short.How do you help without offending?
Prepare managers about the seriousness of mental health. From an organisational perspective, interactive training sessions can help. This is particularly useful to prepare managers for what they perceive as awkward conversations. In this scenario, leaders are taken out of their comfort zone to explore their own vulnerability and conversation techniques to find a common ground for sharing issues that are core to a person’s mental wellbeing.Make mental health an open conversation
Mental fatigue can happen to anyone, so the promotion of any Employee Assistance programmes across a company is vital if this forms part of your employee benefits. Campaigns to raise awareness, with free materials from organisations such as Mind, can also raise awareness of the mental health and reduce the perception of it as a taboo subject.Use the right language
Employee issues should be escalated to HR where appropriate, so the education of managers is paramount. HR may be able to help in joint discussions using the right language to encourage an employee to share their concerns.What next?
Treat the mental and physical challenges in the same way. Get your leadership teams on board and share the message to encourage employees to be able to alert you to stress before it impacts their lives. Being open about mental health is good for everyone.
Here is just some of the excellent feedback we had from previous attendees of David’s Masterclass: “Excellent speaker, thoroughly thought provoking, thank you Morgan Hunt for running this”“Spectacular, inspiring human who has changed my thinking about a way forward with wellbeing in my organisation” “Thought provoking and relevant to the workplace” “David was an incredible speaker and the way in which he shared his personal experiences was extremely humbling”