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The Red Hot Recruitment Market Continues…

We are in week 7, (8?, 9 – anyone??!) of the latest lockdown and it is fair to say that most of Auckland has had moments recently where they’ve quietly lost it!  Lockdowns are a rather brutal measure for bringing one problem under control – the problem being that it smashes so many other areas of our day to day lives – freedom and liberties, mental health, economic performance and many other non covid health issues that are not being addressed or diagnosed right now.

So we thought we’d convey a silver lining in this madness.  And that is that the demand for talent has not stopped in this lockdown – in fact, it might have even got busier.

We have just had a few record months – in all stats such as number of jobs in and number of placements.  Contract and temp work (which got smashed last year in lockdown) has pretty much continued, and demand for permanent employees has skyrocketed.

In our Accounting & Finance division – they’ve nearly doubled the number of jobs they are working on compared to last year (when we weren’t in lockdown).

Our Tech team just continues month on month to have their most successful month ever.  They make more placements in one week than they were making in a month a year ago.  It is crazy!!

In Sales and Marketing – it has been a bit more muted than last year (when there was a scramble for online marketing), but we’ve had a couple of biggest months also in there!

Here is some direct feedback from some of our specialists:

Morgan Vincent – Sales & Marketing Recruitment

Recruitment slowed for us in the first couple of weeks of lockdown as clients took stock, and then the demand surged.  Most candidates I am speaking with are looking at a number of roles so the faster a client can move the better.  Now is not a great time for a long process or average communication!

We are noticing there is less of a personal connection – which is to be expected when you’ve done a recruitment process completely online.  What this unfortunately means is some candidates are ghosting (they are going off-grid, and often it is because they have taken another role) – we don’t normally see this and we believe that with the lack of personal interaction, they just don’t feel that bad by letting people down.  We’re having to make sure we are addressing this with candidates upfront so we don’t waste time.

Further – the exhaustion and frustration out there mean that many good candidates are putting a search on hold until they have the energy to start to look again (this will impact those organisations looking to hire in the short term).

Overall, however, the good news is that there’s much less uncertainty this time around from employers.  If you’re a good candidate in Sales & Marketing and have the energy and enthusiasm to look for a new role right now – the choice is yours!

Olivia Howse – Accounting & Finance Recruitment

Last year – accounting & finance recruitment took a hit – particularly in the contractor market.  This year – well it is a different story!  IFRS, transformation projects and systems implementations are common and this has meant that good candidates are in high demand.  In the permanent recruitment space – there has never been more demand – in fact in the past few weeks we’ve had a number of clients calling back saying “in fact, instead of one management accountant, I’ll take two if you can find them”.

Candidate sentiment is good in A&F and most good candidates are aware that this is an opportune time to move (as long as the company is of course solid and performing).  Generally, the demand is coming from the larger organisations with solid balance sheets and long term horizons where this lockdown is a blip rather than a success or failure proposition.

Clients we are working with are quick to act and take our advice on how to proceed right now – and as a result, we are having some of our most successful placement months ever. While there is a talent shortage, our depth of networks and experience in the market is assisting us right now as we’re able to access hard to find people.

Sarah Quintal – Technology Recruitment

The tech sector is continuing to have an extremely strong demand for experienced talent.  As a sector, we’ve been sorely affected by closed borders and many candidates leaving last year to return to their home countries.  Coupled with strong intent from some of our largest companies around tech transformation projects – demand is super high and talent supply is at one of its lowest levels ever.

This of course means that rates and salaries have been escalating in the past 4-5 months, with the only slight relief being lockdown, but it looks to continue as organisations compete for talent.  Counteroffers are the norm currently and it is common for candidates to have up to 5 job offers at any given time.  Clients are responding with quick processes and ensuring they are paying market rates.  

We seem to have month on month of our busiest months ever, so it doesn’t look to change anytime soon while the borders are closed.

About the author

Angela Cameron - CA, CPA

Executive Director

A chartered accountant by qualification, she is a recruitment leader by nature.

  • Dilhan

    March 17, 2022 at 10:06 am

    Great analysis and Insights

  • Dilhan

    March 17, 2022 at 10:07 am

    Great analysis and Insights on the NZ job market

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