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More Than Half of Recruiting Professionals Believe That the Economy Will Improve by the End of 2020

Almost a third of recruiting professionals’ businesses are doing better or the same as last year

Research conducted by Bullhorn, the cloud computing company that helps staffing and recruiting organisations transform their businesses, has found that recruiting professionals are optimistic about COVID-19’s future economic impact. According to Bullhorn’s Global Recruitment Insights and Data (GRID) COVID-19 Impact Survey, only two percent predict a sustained depression that extends past 2021, and more than half (56 percent) expect the economy to improve by the end of the year.

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Almost a third (30 percent) of staffing and recruiting professionals report that their businesses are doing better or as well as they were this time last year. Healthcare and IT staffing agencies were the most likely to observe stable performance and the least likely to suffer dramatic losses.

Bullhorn released its annual GRID repository of staffing industry research in January 2020, following more than a decade of annual trends reports. While the research was accurate at the time of release, the rapid macroeconomic developments precipitated by the global COVID-19 pandemic, and their resulting impact on the staffing and recruitment industry, necessitated this updated survey, which was fielded in North America and the UK in May and June of 2020.

Internal employee retention

Globally, more than two fifths (42 percent) say they have not reduced their internal workforce. The smallest businesses (1-10 salespeople and recruiters combined) were twice as likely (54 percent) to retain their entire team than the largest companies (28 percent). By comparison, the vast majority (82 percent) of UK businesses have laid off at least some of their workforce. While in North America, 46 percent of businesses have laid off or furloughed employees.

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Customer-related challenges

The vast majority (81 percent) of recruiters said that reduction in job requests had been the biggest customer-related challenge since the beginning of COVID-19. Over half (55 percent) cited increased difficulty in winning new customers, while a fifth (21 percent) reported that clients were unable to make payments. The top challenge faced when acquiring new customers was hiring freezes (72 percent) followed by lack of budget (10 percent).

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