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Firms forced to compete for top talent

A survey of human resources executives, conducted by specialist recruitment firm Robert Half, shows the balance of power in the jobs market is shifting towards candidates, forcing firms to compete much harder for the top talent.

News Staff Reporter 01 May 2014
— 1 minute read

Over 80 per cent of HR executives surveyed said they are now concerned about losing top employees while close to 40 per cent said candidates are now more likely to knock back a job offer than they were three years ago.


Andrew Brushfield, director at Robert Half said, “it is easy to assume that recruitment is a one-sided process with the cards stacked in the employer’s favour. However, hiring managers don’t always hold the winning hand, and there is no guarantee their preferred candidate will accept the offer”.

When asked to suggest the most common reason why a candidate will refuse a job offer, 29 per cent of respondents nominated a competing offer from another company, while 21 per cent cited unsatisfactory remuneration as the key problem.

“Quality talent is always in demand and companies cannot afford to be complacent with their recruitment strategy. It is important for employers to have a strong understanding of current market salaries in their industry, and in particular, for highly sought-after skills,” he said.

“Failing to offer appropriate remuneration can cost a business dearly, both in terms of lost talent plus wasted time and resources during the recruitment process,” added Mr Bushfield.

Employers are also exploring additional ways, aside from remuneration, to attract and retain staff, said Mr Bushfield.

“Some initiatives we have seen include mentoring programs, training and development, health and wellbeing benefits, flexibility around hours or telecommuting, as well as providing a more positive office environment in a convenient location and with amenities,” he said,.

Mr Brushfield noted that for hiring managers and candidates to make an informed decision, both parties need to be transparent during the selection process.

“As a job seeker, this means discussing career motivation and researching the company’s reputation; and for an employer, being honest about the position and responsibilities, availability of resources, working hours and remuneration.”

Firms forced to compete for top talent
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