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Recruitment tips in a changing environment

The UK employment rate was estimated at 75.8% in December 2022 to February 2023, 0.2 percentage points higher than September to November 2022. The increase in employment over the latest three-month period was driven by part-time employees and self-employed workers.

Growth in average total pay (including bonuses) was 5.9% and growth in regular pay (excluding bonuses) was 6.6% among employees in December 2022 to February 2023. Average regular pay growth for the private sector was 6.9% in December 2022 to February 2023.

In January to March 2023, the estimated number of vacancies fell by 47,000 on the quarter to 1,105,000. Vacancies fell on the quarter for the ninth consecutive period and reflect uncertainty across industries, as survey respondents continue to cite economic pressures as a factor in holding back on recruitment. 

If you are looking to recruit just now there are a number of actions you can take to make your business attractive to new staff. In addition to reviewing your pay and conditions to be as competitive as possible, these include:

  • Tasking recruitment as a permanent process
  • Regularly asking existing staff, customers and suppliers for introductions
  • Offering incentives for referrals
  • Make sure you are running constant online social media and local advertisements
  • Embracing flexibility in hours and location in your business
  • Introducing a “Golden Hello” and loyalty bonusses for length of service (typically one to three years)
  • Advertising testimonials from existing staff
  • Using government initiatives for apprentices
  • Make your company and the job sound as attractive as possible by outlining the position to sound prestigious and challenging. These two factors are big incentives for bright potential candidates
  • Knowing that Job satisfaction comes from feeling respected and having the opportunity to learn new things and excel in the face of obstacles when advertising the role
  • Convey your businesses personality so potential employees get a feel for what it would be like to work for you

Recruiting new employees is a lengthy process so to stand out “be different”! For example, some employers are now offering “Wellbeing leave” in addition to the usual holiday package.

Useful guidance on the procedures for recruitment can be seen in the ACAS guide “Recruiting staff” which can be seen here: Recruiting staff (

See: Labour market overview, UK - Office for National Statistics (

May 12, 2023