There can be many reasons why IP’s often struggle to recruit
the quality staff they need. Some of
these can be easily addressed, whereas others less so. Here are just a few we feel can often be
overcome, before embarking on the recruitment process:
Are you offering market rates? A lot of our clients only recruit occasionally and so it can be hard to gauge what your competitors are paying. Market rates have been increasing, certainly at administrator level where significant increases has been seen recently (see our example later in this blog). Just because your current staff are paid less than market rate, that shouldn’t deter you from offering new recruits what they can get elsewhere. However, if you don’t keep up with market rates, you could eventually lose some of your current team. GGT can help guide you on appropriate rates.
If you have a high staff turnover, this should alert you to a problem that may need addressing. Insolvency is a small world and you can be sure that potential recruits worth their salt will know that you struggle to keep good staff. They will ask themselves if you can offer the secure position most candidates seek. GGT can help you assess the root cause and advice ways to rebuild your reputation.
Holidays and benefits
Do you just offer the basic statutory 20 days plus bank holiday? If you do you may find it hard to attract staff used to more generous entitlements. If your employees can earn additional days, either as a reward for good work or in lieu of overtime, you will become more attractive to a new recruit. The same applies to other benefits such as pensions.
Insolvency often requires long and unsocial hours working. If your staff have to travel a distance to get to work, this can adversely affect their personal life and their motivation. So can you offer some working from home? Can you offer flexible hours? The more flexible you can be the more attractive you will be to a new potential recruit. Plus, you may find productivity may increase too. Candidates often ask GGT if a potential employer will allow flexible working, even part time working. Be prepared to be flexible to secure the best candidates and to retain the best staff.
Qualifications and experience
If you can support staff through exams, not just CPI/JIEB, maybe accounting qualifications too, this will attract the brighter, more ambitious candidates. Support can range from paying the exam fee to paying for study leave. But, often it is the day to day experience on offer that makes or breaks a candidate’s decision. If you only offer limited experience, box candidates in and limit their options for the future, you may not attract the best staff. A broad base of experience gives you a much more rounded, versatile candidate, as well as a candidate satisfied that their career options have not been limited too early in their career.
In the current market there is huge demand for experienced insolvency administrators but very few around. In the short term, there is little you can do about boosting supply, but you can make yourself more attractive as an employer by taking some of the steps we have outlined above. In the medium term, you could help increase supply by training your own staff, and moulding them into a shape that best works for you. If IP’s had continued to train recruits straight from school or university over the last 8 years as they had previously, we wouldn’t have todays shortage at administrator level. GGT can highlight the need for investment in trainees, but GGT can’t force IPs to grow the mighty oaks the profession will desperately need tomorrow from the many potential acorns available today, only IPs can do that.
It’s a very competitive market out there at the moment. We recently had one client who simply raised administrators salaries by £5k pa to beat his competitors attracting good staff! That might be a one off, but we suspect that it is a sign of things to come! GGT Insolvency Recruitment will happily help any insolvency practice that is looking to recruit. We offer guidance and suggest solutions to try to ensure that the match between the IP and the candidate is the best and for the long term. Just contact Geoff or Sheona on 0333 577 5705, or email firstname.lastname@example.org or Sheona@insol-jobs.co.uk or visit our website www.insol-jobs.co.uk