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RCSA President, Nina Mapson Bone, reflects on 2020

As we draw into Christmas of 2020 I couldn’t be prouder of our industry. Our member firms have risen to the challenge of 2020 with resilience, courage and an ability to adapt that really does show how great we are. Clients and candidates alike have come to depend on us this year in a way that perhaps they didn’t need to in previous years.

Candidates, many of them needing work now more than ever, have been helped by us in the thousands, no in the hundreds of thousands. Recruitment firms have been responsible for placing over 114,000 people into jobs since COVID hit.

Clients, who have also entered this unknown territory, have called upon us for advice, asked our opinions on how to structure their businesses and sought our help where many great candidates have been nervous to leave a secure role.

Our partners also rose to the challenge. Many working with our members to find ways to keep their partnerships going in tough economic circumstances, many going above and beyond contractual obligations and showing the true value of the word “partner”.

And our teams, our teams who have done the hard yards, who have been in lockdown, some for significant parts of the year, who have adapted to working from home, to video interviewing, to meeting clients over a screen. They have had to counsel and give courage to those looking for work. They have had to keep their energy and momentum up to ensure the relationships with their clients are strong and will endure this shock. And they have done an outstanding job of it.

This pride in our industry has made me reflect. It has been a turning point in the year for our sector. A point where we truly have lived up to the word “consultant” in our titles of “recruitment consultant” and shown a shift in gears from the transactional price led recruitment that previously pervaded our organisations. It is this pride that I want us to cherish, and encourage through into 2021. We have an opportunity to shape our industry as we come out of COVID and a moment to really share with the wider community the intrinsic value and professionalism we all know to be true in what we do.

It is for this reason that next year we will be kicking off a campaign – “Retain your Recruiter - Professional fees for a professional service”. A campaign to help our members get paid properly for the work they do; a campaign to help our clients get the best assistance in finding the right candidate for a role, not the fastest one; a campaign to assist our candidates in knowing they will be represented professionally at all times.

It is time to take our pride in what we do to market!

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