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Growth in temp billings hits 6 month high

A recent industry report has shown that contractor demand is on the up while permanent placements continue to fall back, as economic uncertainty continues to impact hiring trends.

The latest KPMG and REC UK Report on Jobs, compiled by S&P Global, showed a slight fall in permanent staff placements across the UK, while temp billings growth has hit a six-month high. 

The report, compiled from responses to a survey of a panel of around 400 UK recruitment and employment consultancies, recorded signs of relative improvement in hiring conditions during March. 

The slower pace of permanent placement growth may be attributed to clients delaying hiring decisions in the current economic climate, and tighter budgets. The corresponding upsurge in temporary placements has seen contractor billings rise at the quickest rate since September 2022. 

Candidate engagement more important than ever

The accelerating pace of temp billings brings into sharper focus the issue of candidate engagement and retention, as recruitment businesses strive to meet the needs of their clients. In the race to fill roles, agencies are faced with talent shortages and diminishing candidate pools. 

There is some light at the end of the tunnel. Another key finding of the latest UK Report on Jobs is that the upturn in contractor placements was supported with a modest rise in temporary staff availability. Yet, even if the people are out there, the costs of resourcing and placing them continues to rise. Advertising vacancies, sourcing candidates, interviewing, ID and DBS checks, screening references…the list goes on, and it all adds up fast.

To increase efficiency, many recruitment businesses are turning to a strategy of candidate engagement and retention. One valuable metric in such a strategy is redeployment rate; the rate at which candidates finish one assignment and are actively redeployed on repeat assignments by the same agency.

The challenge of contractor redeployment

Understandably, the priority for agencies is to solve their clients’ resourcing needs quickly, so they concentrate energy and resource into deploying new people who they know are readily available. The challenge of redeployment is that the agency often doesn’t know when a worker has dropped off an assignment, or there is a delay before they are told. 

While this is not always the case; there are some industries where the line of communication between client and agency is very proactive; it is true of many sectors. This makes it impossible for agencies to capture the trigger point when a worker becomes available for a new assignment… and the redeployment ship has sailed. 

Better data for smarter decisions

At Liquid Friday we have developed a tech solution to the challenge of contractor redeployment. 

The unique Liquid Stride platform is able to provide unique data insights to allow agencies to make faster repeat placements, driving efficiencies and allowing recruiters to focus on other key areas for growth.

Don’t worry this isn’t a sales pitch! But we’d be really interested to hear what you think. If you run a recruitment business, and would like to find out more, please do get in touch with us or download our brochure below. 

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