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Recrutiment & Employment Confederation

This economy is full of opportunity, if we get our approach right

Advice for employers

Neil  Carberry avatar

Written by Neil Carberry Chief executive

It wasn't quite the business look I was going for but my two black eyes (sustained by a misplaced elbow during a rugby match - not our latest tussles with government!) certainly meant the #RECLive22 conference on 30 June will live long in the memory!

But it was memorable for all the right reasons too.  We heard from thought leaders across our business community, plus political and sporting heavyweights. You can already watch back the highlights from the day online if you​​​​​​​ pre-registered and our digital guide summarising the key learning points will be available soon.

The message from this year's conference was clear - as professional service providers, this economy is full of opportunity for recruiters if we get our approach right.

But we are at a turning point right now. While labour and skills shortages are nothing new, their prevalence coupled with inflation, surging energy prices and international threats to the supply chain, mean there are growing pressures on clients and the wider economy. So far, we have probably seen half the economic change the pandemic will wreak.

As the WD40 of the labour market - keeping things running smoothly - it’s our job as recruiters to help that change happen. If we get it right then we will build our success on opportunities opened for candidates, and clients that we have helped to grow.

At the REC, our work is all about helping you with that change:

  • We’ve used our record-breaking media profile and research to talk directly to client businesses about the market and the need for people planning to be elevated in their thinking and in their buying habits. Look out for our new report next Monday, which will be full of advice you can take straight to clients – and the costs of not taking recruitment seriously.
  • We’ve launched new business advice week on week to help recruiters with the key challenges you face – from retaining and attracting good people for your own business, to data that you can use with clients, to advice as you prepare for your next corporate transaction.
  • Next month, we're welcoming Greg Savage once again to the REC to share his business critical advice for meeting the challenges that lie ahead - you can book now to hear from this leading adviser to recruiters globally on how to ensure your business thrives in the autumn and into 2023.
  • We’ve used our contacts with Government to explain the role of our industry, and to achieve changes that help you do business – like extensions to the digital right to work system, though we know the work is not yet done on IDVT.  Our new campaign will also have big messages for Government.
  • And we continue to stand up for doing things the right way. This is what makes the REC brand valued with clients, candidates and in Government. Even when, like the last few weeks over agency workers and strikes, it puts us into conflict with the politicians. We’ve campaigned against changing the regulations to allow agency workers to break strikes - because we saw what happened when one or two agencies got inadvertently embroiled in the P&O dispute. And we will support members with what you need to do to protect your reputation as a business.

You can’t be all about standards just when the going is good. That is why they are at the heart of what it is to be a member of the REC. And I want to thank you once again for your support of this goal: 2022 saw the highest ever renewal rate from REC members. We truly value that – we are, after all, your organisation and we are stronger as a community.

If you are taking some time off shortly to have a well-earned break this summer, enjoy it! We'll look forward to seeing many of you again this autumn as we hit the road for our regional CEO and spotlight meetings. And if not before, definitely at the REC Awards in November!  If you haven't attended this in the past, it's a must for the diary and a fantastic chance to celebrate the superstars in your business. Entries are now open.

Yours Aye,


Powering growth in 2023 and beyond

With 40 years of experience, Greg Savage is a respected voice across the global recruitment industry. Join 'Powering growth in 2023' and learn about margins, pricing, metrics, the benchmarks you need, what innovation and disruption in recruitment really means, and much more.