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Recruiting in the corona crisis: Many companies are slowing down the search for personnel

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According to a survey by the e-recruiting platform JobTeaser, 40 percent of companies in Germany are still actively looking for new employees.

In half of the companies surveyed, the budget of the HR managers was reduced or completely frozen until further notice.

The initiators of the survey warn that savings in the recruiting area could damage companies and their reputation as employers in the long term.

Some see it positively and say: After all, 40 percent of companies in Germany continue to recruit young talent despite the Corona crisis. The others, the negatives, say: But that means that 60 percent of the companies are no longer looking for new employees or have at least partially stopped the recruiting process.

Both numbers, the 60 and the 40 percent, are the results of a survey by JobTeaser – a French e-recruiting platform that connects students and young professionals with companies across Europe. More than three million students, 700 colleges and universities and 80,000 companies are represented there.

In addition to students and universities, JobTeaser surveyed 237 companies from eight European countries for the survey. The survey period was April 1-17, 2020, so companies were in the middle of the corona crisis. The results show that the recruiting situation in Germany is similar to the overall European average. Just under a third of European companies are currently still looking for new workers. Companies were surveyed in France and the UK, among others.

50 percent of HR managers have no or less budget available

For half of the German companies, the budget for the search for personnel is either completely frozen (13 percent) or partially reduced (37 percent). The fact that half of the companies that still have the same budget available as before the crisis apparently does not really exhaust this budget is probably because all recruiters have to keep their budget together at the moment – nobody can predict how long it will last Crisis still lasts.

For Jérémy Lamri, initiator of the survey and Director of Research and Innovation at JobTeaser, the numbers from the survey are cause for concern. “During the 2008 financial crisis, many companies stopped their efforts and employer branding efforts for young talent,” says Lamri. “It took many years to regain this bond with students and graduates.”

In plain language, this means that crises in the past have already led companies to save on recruiting. But as necessary the savings in this area for the companies may be – this recruiting stop can damage the relationship between groups and junior employees in the long term.

Companies should not leave the recruiting area unused

That is exactly what Svenja Rausch is afraid of given the numbers. She is Head of Marketing at JobTeaser, for Germany, Austria and Switzerland. “In this country, too, there is a risk of a break between companies and talents due to the drop in budgets and the associated loss of targeted employer branding measures,” says Rausch. Right now, in the crisis, it is essential for companies to “maintain the painstakingly built trust and commitment to high potentials.”

Only in this way can companies emerge stronger from the corona crisis, says Rausch. Strengthening her own brand as an employer now, she says, should cost companies less money and effort than leaving the recruiting area unused – and then having to make up for this failure later. Then, Svenja Rausch believes, building a good employer image will cost companies even more money and effort than it currently does.

Despite everything, many HR teams are positive about the future

It is logical that it is precisely the industries that are now shutting down their recruiting efforts that have been particularly hard hit by the Corona crisis. Above all, this affects the hotel, tourism and retail sectors – where there is currently a hiring freeze. According to the survey, the situation is different in the areas of sales, logistics, transport, agriculture and food industry and digital technology. Those responsible stated that they would continue to hire.

Despite everything, HR managers and their teams remain positive – at least many of them. This also emerges from the survey. 41 percent of European recruiters say they are confident and are in the process of reorganizing their approach. Only twelve percent of HR managers have great doubts about their future viability. And if you add up all the percentages in relation to the whole of Europe, you also get a very positive result, namely: 76 percent of all companies surveyed continue to at least partially continue their personnel search.

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