Recruitment and “The Fourth Industrial Revolution”
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Recruitment and “The Fourth Industrial Revolution”

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity.”

Charles Dickens quote sums up nicely where we find ourselves in the Fourth industrial revolution. The Fourth Industrial Revolution represents entirely new ways in which technology becomes embedded within societies and even our human bodies. Think robots, self driving cars and 3 D printing….never has the fashion retail sector moved so quickly and with as much impact.

I wanted to therefore share some of the changes that I am seeing in recruitment. My sector is also disrupting and being disrupted. In Aug 2016, Randstad – one of the worlds’ largest Recruitment companies announced it was acquiring, enabling both sides to “feed each other” and knock out some tough competition in 1 fell blow. My industry predicts that it will be easier for workers and employers to engage without any middleman. Given that Venture Capitalists have invested substantial amounts of money into on-demand platforms, Job Boards and Aggregators will compete with Recruitment Consultancies at all levels including head hunting. There will be new and even more fierce competition within the fashion / retail recruitment sector, and at a time where financial economic growth – or lack of means that there may well be fewer roles to fill.

This means that the human touch, thought leadership approach and ultimately coaching skill guide will mark out those Headhunters who survive and thrive. This is a theme that I would like to expand on over the course of our next few newsletters.

Times are also “a-changing” for candidates, my observations include:

  • Fragile markets, leading to CEO’s and Hiring Managers to require previous demonstrable success in the relevant product area, level of market or international territory.
  • CEO’s NOT wanting transferable skills as they navigate “choppy changing waters” with some difficulty.
  • Anecdotal – but there being fewer roles available in the fashion/retail space.

So we all have to work smarter, from a candidate perspective, the expectation is huge…

  • It is suggested that 65% of all kids entering school today will commence employment in roles that do not exist today.  

Key recurring themes when I meet passive and active candidates are:

  • Poorly written cv’s – when Hiring Managers are looking for “compelling world class” documents, that demonstrate responsibility, execution and achievement.
  • A lack of real net – working exposure, leading to lack of holistic business knowledge.
  • Not actively keeping up with noteworthy initiatives, events and news within our sector and the world of business globally. This is certainly an area that I struggle with – given the pace of change.
  • So here’s to entering the 3rd quarter of 2016, and working smarter.

Remember – information is power!