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31st January, 2018


Doesn’t Christmas seem like forever ago?! January is drawing to a close and the year is well and truly in full flow. But what will 2018 bring in the world of recruitment and talent selection? With an ever-changing political climate, economic uncertainty, increasing minimum wages and skills shortages on the horizon, here are the key areas that we at COS see shaping the next 12 months


It’s been well documented in the media recently that the UK is facing a serious skills shortage. Demand for permanent staff continues to grow in multiple sectors including medical, engineering and cybersecurity among many others. This can be seen right across the board, right down to the lower level support roles in both office and industrial environments.

What does this mean for recruitment though? Well, if candidates are scarcer, the ones that are available will be in high demand. The recruitment process must move more quickly for you to secure the right people for your business. We find that working out a full timescale at the start of the process can really help put you ahead of the pack with the best, most in-demand candidates.


Whenever there is a shortage of active candidates, everyone looks to the passive market. Candidates who are not on the job boards or actively applying for jobs might be tempted away for a great opportunity, but the challenge is finding them in the first place!

As an agency, passive candidates has been something of a focus for us over the past 12 months. From social media to local engagement and our own extensive database, we’re leaving no stone unturned to find the best talent.

Also, with a volatile political and economic climate people may look to stay put until things settle down. Therefore, think about what you’re offering your current staff. From salary to pension, benefits to parking arrangements, everything comes into play in a competitive market.  


An uncertain climate creates uncertain people. Candidates 2018become more nervous when looking to leave their current job, with last minute decisions to stay put becoming the norm – better the devil you know, right?

Our job as recruiters, and your job as potential new employers, is to explain why a move might be the best thing for them. More security, better earning potential, more flexible working hours and so on. Whatever you can offer, make sure it’s part of your sales pitch to potential new staff.


The Autumn Budget in November 2017 confirmed another rise in the National Minimum Wage in the UK, with 25+ to receive £7.83 per hour from 1st April, an increase of 33p per hour. With similar increases across the age brackets right down to Apprentices, this is something that we’ve factored into plans for 2018. Consider how these changes are likely to affect you and your business – do you need to put anything in place?


You didn’t think we’d forgotten about Brexit, did you?! IT’s definitely still on the radar and, even though the official Brexit date is still over 12 months away, the next year will be full of things to think about for businesses and individuals alike. Ongoing negotiation is likely to affect the pound and the March 2018 deadline for the transition deal could make for an interesting few months!

In summary, 2018 promises to be an interesting year all round, but one we’re really looking forward to. Here’s to the challenges and successes that are sure to come and, if you need some assistance with your recruitment, you know where we are!

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