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How to Overcome Recruitment Challenges in 2019

For Hire Sign

The art of successful recruitment is a multi-pronged approach requiring flexibility all the way through. 

It is truly a candidate-driven market with the skills shortage in the UK is causing companies to spend £6.3 billion on temporary workers, higher salaries and further training.

With candidates so reluctant to change roles, how can you overcome recruitment challenges in 2019?

This article will explore both recruitment challenges when working with an agency such as Spotlight Recruitment or when recruiting on your own.


1) Don’t Delay with Feedback

It makes no sense to stick rigidly to an interview schedule that allows for no flexibility for candidates.

The effective recruitment process is not just about having a deadline for the new hire to start, but also understanding candidates’ requirements.

We frequently have clients recruit over several months and then finally decide on a candidate who now has other offers on the table. 

If candidates sense silence they can be left feeling lukewarm about a company that is slow to react with positivity. So keep your candidates updated in the process to keep their interest.

When you meet someone you think ticks the boxes offer them a job within a set time frame, don’t keep deliberating. 

‘No decision’ is not the safest decision. When you have no one in the role, your business can struggle under the pressure.

If you have been recruiting with no success for months, it is a clear signal that something is not working.

It’s time to step back, reassess and form a new plan.


2) Don’t Tick All the Boxes – Offer a Challenge

Good recruiters realise that in order to keep talent engaged and happy there needs to be a learning curve for new hires. 

If you offer the role to someone who literally meets all the criteria and is reassured they can do the job from day one, you risk losing them quickly. 

Ask yourself: “How long would you stay in a new role that was almost exactly the same as your previous role?”

While it may seem riskier offering a role to a candidate that needs more guidance at first, you will more likely end up with a motivated candidate who will stay in a job for longer and have more drive and energy to succeed.


3) Communicate Effectively with Recruiters

Whether you are partnering with a recruitment agency or recruiting solo, keep all the relevant parties updated and informed about your new hire needs, hiring progress, structural changes to the business etc.

Some of our clients who have worked with us for over 10 years are periodically updating us on anything that is relevant to the end goal.

These close-knit relationships have made us an excellent extension of our client’s HR department, which makes the whole recruitment process more efficient.


4) Consider Employee Referral Schemes

Think of all the sources the right candidate can come from and consider offering your existing employees a referral programme to generate new hires.

As your staff knows the culture and goals of the organisation you may find they are highly successful in recommending the right people.

Staff referral scheme can be a cost-effective way to find the right talent but can also generate volumes of applicants who are not the right fit, which is why it may require an effective management system to track and shortlist applicants.


5) Promote Candidates Internally

Discussing Promotion

It can be very costly to recruit with the average cost to employers of replacing a single member of staff at more than £30,000, according to a recent analysis from Oxford Economics. 

The greatest expense, more than £25,000, comes from a loss of productivity caused by the 28 weeks on average it takes for a new hire to learn the roles.

Of course, there is no algorithm to decide which employee gets promoted and which don’t (Google already tried that) so this is purely down to knowing your team and understanding the new role.

With the right training and development, you could promote existing staff and boost motivation all around.


6) Understand Your Market

One of the benefits of partnering with an agency is the knowledge share. 

We advise our clients on salary benchmarking, HR issues, psychometric testing, reference checking, and contracts. In case, you decide to recruit alone, you need to make sure you do it correctly.

Look around at other similar roles and the salary/benefits they offer and make sure your role stands out with a competitive salary.

Ask yourself whether you think you can achieve all the things that you want for the salary early on in the process. 

It can be a huge drain on resources and frustrating for all parties involved, if you spend months searching, reviewing CVs and interviewing only to find out that you are not offering an attractive salary or a package.


7) Take Expert Advice

Recruitment is time-consuming and expensive.

Using an agency such as Spotlight makes the process streamlined and goal- orientated.

According to LinkedIn, 70% of today’s workforce is passive, made up of employees who aren’t intentionally searching. 

As the leading Marketing recruiter, our team is made up of Ex-Marketers who can correctly identify and engage with the right people. 

Recruiting without the help of an agency can make it extremely hard when relying purely on advertising and not on direct search. A recruitment agency can attract candidates in a unique way.


8) Make the Right Offer

When offering a candidate the role, take into account their current salary, their interview process elsewhere (if you have that information to hand), their market worth and exactly how motivated you want them to feel. 

If you offer them the same as they are already on, be prepared to lose them as discussions from that point can be difficult. 

We find many of the offers candidates receive via Spotlight result in a discussion on salary, so don’t take it personally if the first offer is rejected. 

Goalposts can move for the candidate as their interviews progress and open and honest dialogue between both parties can be the start of a positive relationship.

It helps to also know exactly where else they are interviewing, for what salary and what stage they are at, so you have all the info at your fingertips to get the offer accepted.


NICOLA MONGON is the MD of Spotlight Recruitment, the leading marketing recruitment agency in the UK since 2008. Read our 5* Google reviews from candidates and clients to find out more. We are members of the Recruitment and Employment Confederation who ensure member compliance for high professional standards. If you would like to discuss recruitment, you can reach Spotlight on 020 3008 4254 or