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Xcede Recruitment’s top tips for attracting and retaining talent

Xcede Recruitment’s Top Tips For Attracting And Retaining Talent

Every successful business depends on having the right people to drive it forward. Great, marketers, brilliant customer service operators, administrative whizzes with an eye for detail – whatever skillset you require or position you need to fill, you want the best people for the job.

So, we decided to get the views of someone who knows all about attracting and retaining talent. And who better than Imogen Weller, Senior Recruitment Consultant at Xcede Recruitment?

Xcede is a leading European technology, digital, data and analytics recruitment agency which has twice featured in the Sunday Times 100 Best Small Businesses to work for.

Note: Imogen’s insights were featured in our recently published employee benefits survey which gathered the views of 641 start-ups employees – like us, you might be surprised by some of the findings. Read the 2021 employee benefits report here.  

Employee expectations have changed

Every aspect of society has been shaken up by the pandemic and the Government’s response to it. Burgeoning trends pre-pandemic have accelerated at a rapid pace. But what is Imogen’s experience as a recruiter in the digital world?

“As both a recruiter and employer in the tech industry, we’ve noticed a major shift in employees’ expectations. While it’s obvious to point out the increased requirement – and expectation – for homeworking, its impact needs to be fully understood.

“The improved work-life balance many employees have experienced during the pandemic has been an eye opener. Some will be reluctant to return to the daily commute and the rigid work structures of old. Consequently, employers with unnecessarily rigid rules around where their employees work are likely to make prospective candidates reconsider their options.

“We’ve observed for a long time that candidates consider factors beyond salary and career progression – although these two things always have been, and always will be, important. But what we seem to be witnessing post-covid is that flexi-working arrangements have gone from a “would like to have” to an “expect to have”. Forward-thinking start-ups would do well to heed the momentum of this trend.”

Are you a small business owner looking to find the right employee benefits package for your team? At Hooray Health & Protection, we offer independent advice to companies trying to get the right perks at the right price. Use the chatbox on the right or email [email protected] and we’ll be happy to answer your questions.

One perk does not fit all

In our survey of start-up employees, we discovered a wide variety of desired perks. While private health insurance came out top (57% of respondents placed it in their top three most desired), life insurance and extra holiday entitlement were also popular.

It may seem obvious, but it’s worth reiterating: people want different things. Imogen concurs and highlights the importance of gathering the views of your team members.

“Employee satisfaction is not guaranteed by a single perk. This makes it essential to organise fact-finding missions with your team. You need to find out what employees want and then work out the practical means of providing it which benefits both the team and the business.”

One of the most positive findings from our survey revealed that more than three quarters (77%) of employees reported being happy with the benefits they receive. A very similar number (78%) said their views on employee benefits had been sought.

“It’s been heartening to discover that many start-up companies are actively listening to

their teams which, no doubt, has equipped them with the knowledge required to fulfil

their needs,” said Imogen. “While the job is never done – and no doubt there will always be room for progress – it looks like the UK’s vibrant start-up culture is embracing the challenge of giving their employees a great workplace experience.”

Hone your workplace experience

Every business and job role has its unique challenges and quirks. But ultimately, people want to fulfil their potential. They want to do the job to the best of their ability. For an employer, that means providing a positive and supportive workplace environment, and access to the tools and technologies which will help them be at their best.

Imogen expands on this point:

“As a recruiter for tech talent, we often hear the frustration of employees working for a company with outdated technology. A daily grapple with systems and software can become a daily grumble. The talent we work with appreciates access to technology which allows them to express the full extent of their abilities – and beyond. We’ve observed the difference in employee satisfaction when the equipment and software they use becomes an extension of their decision-making and creativity.

“This is just one example which reflects the importance of actively seeking out the views of your employees. This is vital whether it’s related to employee benefits or when it comes to the overall day-to-day experience of working for your company.”

Attracting and retaining talent today

What employees want has clearly changed since the beginning of 2020. The pandemic has evolved individuals’ workplace expectations, but also no doubt made them more mindful of personal – and family – health considerations.

Keeping abreast of general workplace trends is particularly important for recruitment purposes. But as Imogen points out, getting to know the needs of your current workforce is vital for staff retention.

If you need help negating the sometimes baffling world of employee benefits, contact one of our friendly team. We’ll be happy to field all your many and varied questions and advise on the best course of action. Use the chatbox on the right or give us a call: 01273 222805.

Charlie Cousins

Founder and Director of Hooray Health & Protection, Charlie Cousins has enjoyed a career in the insurance and financial services industry spanning over the last ten years.

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