Whether you are part of the three-fifths of job hunters who are unhappy in their current role
due to culture or salary or find yourself needing a new job due to redundancy or relocation,
job hunting is a part of life, and having the right tools to navigate it effectively can make it a
lot more pleasant!
In this blog, we will be answering some recruitment questions and providing some expert
tricks and tips for finding your ideal job, including
Recruiters are experts in job hunting and networking and usually operate within a specific
industry or niche, making them the best people to contact when you are looking for a new
After all, if you had no experience fixing cars, you wouldn’t just rely on your ability to make
the repairs - you would visit a mechanic, and it’s exactly the same with job hunting.
Seeking out the advice of a recruiter and building a relationship with them can be the
difference between getting an interview and not.
There are over 138 recruitment agencies in Glasgow alone, so finding the right fit for you
and your career is crucial.
Finding an agency that specialises in the field you are interested in is the first step to finding
the perfect recruitment consultant for your journey.
Utilising keywords that are relevant to your chosen career along with locations can narrow
down your potential recruitment agencies.
From here you can check out their website for live roles that they are shortlisting for and see
which consultant is looking after those positions.
You can continue your job search with LinkedIn and connect with the consultant on LinkedIn,
adding a personalised note to the request.
Sending a message through the consultancy’s webform is also a great way to get in touch as
the most appropriate person for your industry will get back to you to discuss further.
CVs should always be tailored to the role you are applying for as it is almost impossible to fit
every single piece of experience you have onto your CV.
During your introductory call, you will be able to go through your experience in detail with the
As they recruit in the sector you are interested in, they will be able to pick out the nuggets of
skills gold that their clients are interested in adding to their team and will advise you on how
best to include them in our CV and cover letters.
This will also allow them to add these to your profile on their system, so you pop up when
they are searching for potential interviewees.
No matter how well the interview went, the chances of not getting the job are still quite high.
Rejections are hard, especially when you have invested time and effort into practicing,
researching, and potentially traveling.
Asking for feedback from the recruiter is an important step that a lot of people don’t take.
Recruiters can follow up with the hiring manager or decision maker to find out why they went
with the selected candidate identify any knowledge gaps and give you pointers on how you
could improve your interview performance, making rejections an almost positive thing.
Take your job search to the next level and connect with our Lusona consultants today!
• Discussing past experiences with the consultant can highlight relevant skills that
you didn’t know to mention, and help to tailor your CV.
• Asking for feedback and learning from it to improve future performances is a
positive way to handle rejection and gets you one step closer to your goal.
Let’s start with a quote.
‘Perfection is boring. Getting better is where all the fun is’. (Dragos Roua).
I am conflicted here. Quarter of a century in recruitment and in the fourth of worrying ‘boom and bust’ cycles over this time I hold rigidly to my view that finding a ‘perfect candidate’ is as hopeful as finding a unicorn. I have told hundreds and hundreds of clients this over the years. They listen but nonetheless continue the search.
We need to clarify the definition of ‘perfect’ when it comes to hiring new employees.
Let’s work on the definition and how best you can fit it.
There are three perspectives in any recruitment process. Yours, your recruitment Consultant’s and the potential employer. To succeed you must always remember this. By ‘succeed’ I mean achieving the opportunity which gives you all the best options and all the best outcomes.
Your perspective should be about opportunity and nothing else. A 20% salary increase sounds excellent – but is it? Imagine your career as a three-dimensional situation. Salary and benefits are but one dimension. The others are opportunity to develop and learn and quality of life. Salary hikes are always a short- lived phenomenon. The market always corrects itself. Then what?
Now, your recruitment expert – assuming they are of the highest quality- which at Lusona they are – wants just these things from you; -
Your potential new employer often is chasing the impossible dream of perfection I mentioned. The best employers are not filling roles in the ‘here and now’. The best employers are planning where you can be in three or five years’ time in their Organisation with their support and direction. A recruiter makes an introduction. The employer makes the decision. The best employers don’t just fill vacancies, they make an investment. In you.
So – have we defined ‘perfect’? No. In recruitment it doesn’t exist. Is there a perfect career? I doubt it. Contentment is possible in all fairness. After all, the majority of people would rather not have to work at all but darn those pesky bills!
Surveys say that 70% of employers will look up candidates on social media, but when it comes to recruiters it’s more like 100%.
And if you think that whatever employers and recruiters find when they search for you online won’t have an impact on whether you get hired, you’d be wrong. 54% of employers say they’ve pulled a candidate from their shortlist based solely on their social media presence!
In a nutshell: Use social media wisely and it can do great things for your career, but use it thoughtlessly and it could do your professional reputation some serious damage.
Here are 8 ways your social media presence (past and present) might be hurting your career – and what you can do about it.
Posting negatively about previous or current customers, colleagues or employers might get you lots of engagement on social media (for all the wrong reasons) but it reflects terribly on you.
Online rants are never a good idea. Sure, they might help you blow off some steam when you’re angry about something, but reacting emotionally and badmouthing people (even if anonymously) is so unprofessional.
Think about it: would you want to work with someone who complains publicly about their job? If you need to rant, phone a friend instead.
If you think employers won’t be looking beyond your LinkedIn account, think again. With a quick Google search, recruiters can easily trace your personal accounts too, and some employers even outsource social media screening for a thorough vet.
You have two choices here: either ensure your account names are fit for job hunting (so no ‘:|AngeL*B*tch|:’ or ‘Big Billy Boy’) or change your privacy settings so that your social media profiles aren’t traceable on search engines.
And the same goes for email addresses and Zoom usernames too!
Again, you might think that posting controversial stuff on LinkedIn gets you lots of attention, but it only attracts the wrong kind of attention.
Posting anything that might be considered offensive should be a big ‘no’ on any social media platform, and try to keep your LinkedIn content particularly professional.
Same goes for posting comments too. Remember that if you comment on a LinkedIn post, that post will appear in the newsfeed of everyone you’re connected with, even if they don’t follow the original poster.
The main lesson here is that if you’re ever second thinking a status update or comment – don’t publish it.
This might sound a bit petty but even on social media, spelling and grammar matters. As much as 66% of employers admit they look negatively on poor grammar or spelling in social media posts.
The reason for this is that it suggests lack of attention to detail. So take your time when posting, and use an integrated tool like Grammarly to keep your spelling and grammar in check. These tools will automatically flag any errors in the status box before you post.
This should be fairly obvious but it’s so crucial that your work history on LinkedIn reflects what’s on your CV.
If a recruiter notices any discrepancies, this looks to them like you either lied to get on the shortlist for a role or that you lack attention to detail – and neither is good.
Spend some time going through your LinkedIn and cross-referencing it with your CV. It could save you an awkward conversation and even improve your future job opportunities.
Got an old Bebo or MySpace account you don’t use anymore? A Facebook account from way back in your uni days?
It’s likely there are a few old social media accounts floating around the web that you’ve forgotten about. And it’s even more likely that these accounts will have profile pics you wouldn’t want an employer to see.
Have a deep search online and delete any old accounts you’re not using anymore. For those accounts you don’t want to delete, make sure you change your privacy settings so the profile pics are appropriate (or at least hidden to the public!).
As recruiters, trust us when we say that the job is certainly not ‘in the bag’ when you get an offer from an employer. Unfortunately, lots of jobs still fall through before start date.
This is why – as well-intentioned as posts like this can be – you should never share any information about a job offer or a hiring process before you start the job.
It’s not unheard of for an employer to retract a job offer because the candidate has posted unprofessionally during their notice period.
If in doubt, just ask your recruitment consultant for guidance. That’s what we’re here for!
We know the advice on social media activity can be a bit confusing. A lot of sources say you should post frequently on LinkedIn to help build your network and reputation as a professional. You’ve probably also been told to comment and engage with other people’s posts as much as possible too.
But there’s a balance you need to strike. If it looks like you spend too much time on social media platforms, posting and commenting at all hours of the day, this is a red flag for employers.
Give yourself a specific window in the day for working on your social media presence (preferably outside working hours) and stick to it.
So now the question is: What does your current online presence really say about you as an employee?
Take some time to look through your social media account web search in public mode to see what employers see (open a new window in ‘incognito mode’ to view this) and make any necessary changes.
If you need some help auditing your social media presence to get ready for the job market, we’d be happy to help!
Contact one of our specialist consultants at Lusona today and someone will be in touch to help you out, free of charge.
There are more women in STEM c-suite roles than ever before. This year already, we’ve seen Scottish Engineering appoint its first female President and Vice-President, and ScotRail hire its first woman COO as it transitions to a new public body.
As a consultant who’s been recruiting for the boardrooms of engineering firms for over 30 years, these appointments feel like a particular turning point (although a very late one, and there’s much more work to be done).
In an ideal world, of course it shouldn’t matter that these important positions are occupied by women. But women still only represent 15% of the engineering workforce, and men still far outnumber women in decision-making positions, so it really does matter.
And while change is certainly happening, it’s happening slowly – and it’s not just a problem in STEM industries either. Representation of women in c-suite roles has increased from just 17% in 2015 to 21% in 2021. And today, just 5% of all CEOs are women.
With the hope that this really does mark a pivotal moment for STEM, I thought I’d take a look at why having more women in leadership roles is so important, and what impact gaining more women in c-suite roles will have on business.
Talking diversity might seem like stating the obvious here, but it’s worth highlighting that appointing more women in the boardroom doesn’t just mean better representation at the top.
More women in management also has a huge impact on diversity hires throughout the whole company. This is why any business that’s trying to make company-wide changes with regards to diversity should consider starting with the boardroom first.
More women in these top jobs also leads to better roles models for young women getting into STEM, especially those just entering the job market. As I mentioned in a recent blog on the engineering talent shortage, only 24% of STEM graduates are moving into degree-relevant roles after graduating.
Women continue to be extremely underrepresented in STEM and striving to hire more women into top jobs in engineering, cloud computing and data roles should be on every hiring team’s agenda. Making a future look tangible for ambitious women in STEM is key to closing the skills gap.
If you think bringing more women into executive positions at your company would be purely a matter of ethics, there’s a lot of interesting data around that might surprise you.
Did you know that businesses with more women in leadership roles are now proven to perform better and make more money too?
One reputable study by the Peterson Institute for International Economics found that having 30% or more women in leadership positions adds 6% to net profit margins. For every 10% added to gender diversity, another report by Mckinsey found this added 3.5% to net profits.
One reason businesses with more female leaders generate more profit is due to higher levels of innovation.
A study of Fortune 500 businesses found that those companies with women in top management produce 20% more patents. Women CEOs make up just 6.4% of Fortune 500 companies, but those that boast more women in leadership far outperform those in the list that don’t.
To say women-lead businesses outperform male-lead ones wouldn’t be such a radical statement today, but it might’ve been even just a few years ago.
The global response to the pandemic made it glaringly clear that we need more women in decision-making roles, as those countries with female-lead governments coped remarkably better with the crisis.
Every year, Fortune releases a list of the world’s ‘most admired’ companies. Something worth noting about all the companies on the list from this year is that they have almost twice as many women in senior management than less reputable companies.
Companies lead by women aren’t just good for business – they’re good for employees too. Research has shown that organizations with more women leaders have a better workplace environment: There’s more transparency, better communication, and the workplace is more purpose-driven.
And if you have employees who are more engaged, inspired and satisfied as a result, this makes hiring and retaining staff a lot easier.
If all of this isn’t enough food for thought, how about the fact that half of Americans (including 46% of men) would prefer to work for a female CEO?
With all these statistics in mind, it’s clearly crucial that STEM industries recognise the societal and commercial benefits of promoting women into these important decision-making roles.
Let’s hope that these recent female c-suite appointments for Scottish Engineering and ScotRail are a sign of good things to come across STEM industries more broadly.
If you’re struggling to attract more women to your roles and diversify your organization’s workforce, please get in touch as this is something Lusona can certainly support you with.
While salary will always naturally be the main deciding factor when a candidate is considering a job move, 60% of job seekers say that employee benefits and perks can determine whether they accept a job offer or not.
The pandemic has had a big impact on the kinds of benefits candidates are looking for in new employers - and the level of expectation too. If you’re struggling to attract candidates to your roles even though you’re offering the market rate, you’re not alone. Competition for talent is tough right now - and candidates know it!
However, if you include the right employee benefits to your compensation package that tap into what candidates are looking for, this will give you a strong advantage and help you stand out as an employer who listens to what employees want.
Here are some employee benefits that will make your roles hard to resist in 2022.
After two years of lockdowns, it’s likely you’re sick of talking about WFH arrangements.
But it’s worth bearing in mind that the working world has changed so much since the pandemic that having the option to work from home is no longer a perk as far as candidates are concerned – it’s an expectation.
Remember that ‘flexible’ doesn’t always have to mean working from home either. It’s just about recognising your employees’ needs and showing a willingness to work around them – provided, of course, that they meet expectations in terms of their weekly or monthly job outcomes.
So for example, flexible start/finish times, compressed hours, flexi-time and job sharing are all options that show you’re willing to offer some form of flexibility to your employees. It’s not a free-for-all, but an opportunity to show you have the kind of workplace culture where you trust employees to get the job done to a high standard and offer some flexibility in return.
As difficult a pill as this can be to swallow, candidates nowadays are looking for ways they can fit work around their lives – not the other way around. Indicating a willingness to recognise and adapt to this will make your offer much more attractive than an employer who runs a tight 9-5 ship.
Having a strict office-based working model will make it hard for you to compete with employers who offer some sort of flexibility, so it’s absolutely worth trying to work out a way you can offer it in some capacity.
When school closures made distance learning the norm, suddenly parents became teachers on top of being employees overnight.
So it’s safe to say, the pandemic hit working parents hard, and job seekers with families will be looking for employers who empathise and offer employee benefits that respond to this.
During the first lockdowns, 27% of businesses reported that they’d implemented ‘non-traditional’ childcare benefits (e.g. childcare stipends and flexible working hours) to support staff with families and 99% of these businesses intend to continue this offering.
And sure, schools have reopened for now, but how employers responded to the situation will still be fresh in parents' minds.
So if a great candidate with a family is choosing between job offers and yours is the only one that doesn’t offer childcare benefits, just think about the impact that will be having on your hiring strategy.
Reports of anxiety and depression in adults have increased 30% since the pandemic. What could you be offering as part of your compensation package that demonstrates empathy with those who have been, and perhaps continue to struggle?
For example, some businesses offer employees the option of subsidised private counseling, mental health days off or even annual subscriptions to counseling and wellbeing apps.
Similarly, wellness initiatives like gym memberships, free yoga classes subscriptions to meditation apps all contribute to building an employer brand that shows you clearly care about staff wellbeing. And what candidate wouldn’t want that?
With the global talent shortage showing no sign of easing up in 2022, as an employer you’ll want to put a lot of focus on recruiting and retaining talented employees.
Providing an attractive package that includes the employee benefits mentioned in this article will play a significant role in attracting great staff, keeping your job offers competitive and ensuring your hires stay happy in the business for longer.
Do you have a friend who works in professional services and is looking for a new challenge in their career?
At Lusona, we’re always interested in working with the best talent on the market - it's as simple as that.
With this in mind, if you know someone who could benefit from our knowledge on the job market, please put us in touch with them.
And if helping your friend find happiness in a new job isn't motivating enough, if we place your friend in their next role, there will be a nice reward in it for you too!
For every candidate you refer to us who isn’t already in our database and we place in a role, we’ll give you a shopping voucher to spend at your favourite store.
To refer a friend to Lusona, you can do one of the following:
We look forward to hearing from you!
There’s a reason why ‘unprecedented’ was Dictionary.com’s word of the year in 2020.
In fact, society has changed so significantly in a short period of time that talking about these ‘unprecedented times’ has even become somewhat of a cliché.
We're still coming to terms with the aftermath of a global pandemic, Brexit, rising inflation, a national skills shortage, international political unrest and our response to climate change.
The impact of all this is that we’re now operating in what’s known as a ‘VUCA’ world for businesses.
But what exactly is VUCA and how does it impact your hiring?
VUCA is an acronym that stands for volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity. It’s a phrase used to describe an environment of constant, unpredictable change that has become the zeitgeist of the last few years.
To break the acronym down, VUCA stands for…
To succeed in a VUCA world, you need to be comfortable with uncertainty. You need to be ready to adapt and open to challenging and reassessing the ‘norm’ of how you currently operate as a business.
This, of course, includes your recruitment strategy and practices too – processes that have worked well for you in the past may be completely ineffectual in this new environment. The key to overcoming this challenge is to take time to understand how VUCA might be impacting your business’s recruitment process so that you can adapt in response.
If this sort of turbulence is going on at a business level, just imagine the impact VUCA must be having on candidates too. Your current and future employees are experiencing the impact of VUCA in ways you might not have even considered yet.
When you’re trying to grow a business in a VUCA world, making the right hires becomes even more paramount to your success.
To continue hiring the right people successfully into your organisation, you need to ensure your hiring process is VUCA-proof. Here are some things to consider:
For the majority of us, moving jobs is a big deal – never mind in a VUCA world where there are many unknowns and question marks over what the future might bring. Meet candidates where they are at both mentally and emotionally: It’s likely they’ll need more assurance and empathy in this new environment than they would have in a pre-covid marketplace.
Provide them with the opportunity to meet a range of people in your business so they feel a sense of belonging from the very beginning. Tell them about your values and what you’re doing as an employer to help your staff to demonstrate that you’re an employer who cares. Be open and honest about your challenges but also the wins you have had. Vulnerability and honesty builds trust.
Having a strong Employee Value Proposition (EVP) is always important in a candidate-led market, but even more so in a VUCA world. What will the candidate get in return for their skills and experience? What’s in it for them?
Don’t expect candidates to understand your EVP based on your branding – these are two very different things. You need to have a devoted strategy to expressing your values, culture and company DNA to let the candidate decide if it’s a match for them personally.
A successful hiring process in a VUCA world relies on a shift in understanding that candidates are sussing you out as much as you are assessing them.
And with Covid-19 now making remote interviews the norm, employers need to go above and beyond to ensure they’re creating a positive candidate experience every step of the journey.
A positive candidate experience includes providing quick response feedback and job offers. Speed matters more than ever in a VUCA world, so you need to move at a pace if you’re going to keep candidates engaged in your process. Slow offers also leave you vulnerable to counter offers from both their current employer and your competitors, so a faster process will benefit you as much as the candidate.
Staying close to your recruiter even when you’re not hiring will help you navigate the job market in a VUCA world. Let them be your market intel - they will know about any changes in the market well before you feel them. Use their expertise to help guide your hiring decisions.
Candidates are overwhelmingly passive when the market is like this so it’s not a situation where you can wait for them to come to you. You need a recruiter who knows the market and your business inside out so they can proactively source the right people for your organisation and be an effective representation of you to prospective talent.
For any process to survive in a VUCA world, it’s imperative that you regularly review and evaluate: What has gone well in your recruitment process in the last 3-6 months? What could be done differently next time?
Adapting your process like this is a form of agile hiring – you work with your recruiter to develop your candidate journey, constantly reviewing and improving it as you go to ensure you’re responding quickly to any changes in the market.
As well as being more agile with your processes, it’s also worth thinking about the kinds of agile qualities to look for in candidates that indicate they’ll perform well in a VUCA world. For example, traits like resilience, curiosity, adaptability and analytical skills become more important typically in this kind of environment.
Let’s be real – it’s likely we’ll be in a VUCA climate for some time, so to stay on the right path with your hiring, you need to recognise and embrace VUCA, not resist it.
By working with Lusona as your recruitment partner, you’ll have experts on your side to guide you through this VUCA market and ensure you make the best hires for your organisation – no matter what the market looks like.
Since 2019, Engineers of all classifications have featured heavily on the Government’s Shortage Occupations List (SOL). Essentially, there just aren’t enough skilled Engineers in the UK to meet demand right now.
And while this is good news for candidates – who now have a lot of leverage in this candidate-short market – it presents a recruitment nightmare for employers.
Engineers themselves are feeling the pinch too: A recent survey shows 37% of UK Engineering professionals believe the current skills shortage will have the biggest impact on their sector in the next five years.
With so many different factors contributing to the talent shortage, it can be hard to know how and where it’s possible to make any impact. While the Government continues to look for new ways to tackle the engineering skills shortage, what can you do as an employer? Here are a few ideas to consider…
If you’re struggling to attract the people you need, look to your employee compensation: are you offering what the candidate really wants, or what the business feels is fair?
Naturally, the first option employers turn to when they’re struggling to find talent is salary inflation, and this has clearly been the case for the Engineering industry in recent years. There’s been an average 10% salary increase for UK engineers in 2021 alone.
But money isn’t everything – employees want more than this. What employee benefits can you offer to attract great engineers? 9 in 10 workers say they want flexibility in their next role. While it’s true that flexible working isn’t the easiest option to offer in an industry like engineering, it’s not impossible.
Have a think about how you could make flexibility work at your organisation. The option of working just one day a week from home could make your roles much more attractive to candidates than what your competitors are currently offering.
A combination of Brexit and Covid-19 have lead to the Great Resignation shaking up hiring in almost every industry; 69% of employees say they’re ready to move jobs. What are you doing to change their minds?
Offering a clear career path and internal development opportunities will not only make your roles more appealing to new candidates, but reduce attrition amongst your existing employees substantially. As much as 82% of employees say they’d quit their job because of a lack of career progression available to them.
So what can you do to ensure your engineers experience a sense of progression inside your organisation? Remember that development doesn’t always need to involve promotion if your internal structure can’t accommodate this. Development can also mean training in new skills that satisfy your employees’ need for learning and self-development, even if there’s no promotion at the end of it.
Research has shown that although the number of undergraduates entering STEM programs is increasing, only 24% of recent STEM graduates are moving into engineering roles six months after graduating. Instead, these candidates are taking up employment in areas like management or teaching.
What is your organisation doing to appeal to younger candidates and to recruit graduates for entry-level roles?
Engineering is perceived by many younger workers as old fashioned and lacking diversity. Men still outnumber women 8 to 1 in engineering roles, while BAME men are 28% less likely to work in STEM. Research has also shown that 29% of LGBTQ candidates also say they’d avoid a career in STEM for fear of discrimination.
Failing to appeal to young graduates presents a problem: A large number of skilled engineers are predicted to retire from the industry in the next few years (for example, 70% of the current nuclear engineering workforce will be retired by 2025). Therefore, bridging the skills gap at graduate level is key to overcoming the talent shortage now and in the coming years.
When you’re competing with many other businesses for skilled engineers in a talent shortage, every minute counts. How can you streamline your hiring process so you’re able to make faster job offers before your competitors do?
For example, could you streamline the interview process so it involves two stages instead of three? Or could you give your recruitment partner more responsibility in managing the initial interview stages so your time is only required when choosing candidates from a final shortlist?
Work closely with your recruitment partner to establish ways you can make the recruitment process tighter and more efficient. This might involve prioritising hiring over certain areas of the business at times, but this will work to your advantage in the long run. If you’re not able to react quickly, you’ll leave yourself vulnerable to counter offers from competitors and current employers too.
For engineering candidates, the only downside of being in such short supply is that they will be getting bombarded daily with comms from desperate recruiters. This happens because employers will leave roles open for any recruiter to fill on a first-come-first-serve contingency basis. This kind of recruitment is counter-productive and is what gives the industry a bad name.
Working exclusively with a reputable recruitment partner will ensure your organisation is represented by professional recruiters you can trust. Reputation is everything, and any candidate who is bothered daily by unprofessional recruiters will likely turn the role down even if it’s the perfect opportunity for them.
Lusona is a recruitment brand that is well known and respected in the UK engineering sector. If you’d like to learn more about how we can help you address talent shortages at your organisations, please get in touch.
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