2022 is the year that many businesses are looking to make up for lost time and ‘crack on’ with their plans for growth. There are challenges to overcome such as the rising cost of living, attracting the best talent and the hunt for specialist roles. The Guild of Architectural Ironmongers has invited SFR Recruitment Solutions, a specialist recruiter to the sector, to talk about recruitment trends. Here, SFR Directors Matthew Robinson and Jamie Smith give their advice and tips on recruiting successfully for business growth in the current climate.
1) Rising cost of living
A greater awareness of overall inflation and cost of living rise in 2021-2022 will naturally cause employees to question the fairness of their salaries as inflation hits a 30 year high as cost pressures continues. Uncertainty whether their employers will increase their salaries in-line with inflation will cause unrest especially as some companies have put a hold on inflationary rises in recent years.
It’s better to keep salaries fair and competitive by making increases every year in-line with inflation so that the business isn’t hit with a massive salary increase all at once. Our advice would be to continuously benchmark salaries in your business and industry.
2) The rise in specialist roles
So far, it’s been a great start to 2022, we’ve seen an increase in specialist roles some of which we haven’t been asked to recruit for previously, with attractive salaries attached to them. What we’re finding at SFR Recruitment Solutions is that large sector players who are looking for an experienced professional are willing to pay more to secure the best talent. It’s important for companies to factor in inflation in salaries annually to stay competitive, otherwise they are at risk of leaking talent.
In 2021, 35% of our placements were architectural ironmongery and 36% associated to access control products. 2021 saw a huge move towards technology with many of our clients embracing new technology in their product offering, offering electromechanical locking solutions, smart home products, and on some occasions enterprise access control systems.
We also noticed an increase in Technical Product Manager and Product Category Manager roles, the advantage being in the business gaining invaluable technical product knowledge. In simple terms adding someone with electromechanical experience or electronic security systems background to a team traditionally trained in mechanical door hardware. This person works alongside the team to add technical knowledge and support to the installers, channel partners and suppliers on an advanced level, this in turn adds value to the offering. After all, we know that offering more hands-on-time, training and support can help influence an installer fit your product on that university project.
This person may have a joint responsibility for both commercial and marketing. They can assist with product literature, product launches, trade shows, market research, identification of market gaps, key value chain drivers, trends and customer profit potential.
3) A focus on vertical growth
We’ve seen a shift in our manufacturing clients towards hiring market specific Business Development Managers to take on specific market verticals such as Education, Health Care, Hospitality and Utilities. On some occasions even more specific such as multiple occupancy living and commercial property.
The idea behind this is to gain a new employee who can focus on an area of the market they consider undiscovered, untapped, with the potential to gain marketing share. Having a sector specialist allows them to gain sector growth quickly or instantaneously.
4) The search for the best talent
Unfortunately, available jobseekers are, more often than not, not seen as the best fit as their motivation is to find a new role, sometimes ‘any role’ creating a ‘forcing a square peg in a round hole’ effect. The more desired candidates are the passive candidates who are working in similar roles within the sector, know instinctively, the companies they would like to work for; however, they’re not actively looking – they need to be headhunted. Here are some tips in our blog on finding the best talent.
5) Keep calm and carry on virtually recruiting!
Even though the Covid restrictions have been lifted, and most people have either returned to the office or are hybrid working on a permanent basis, it’s apparent that remote recruitment is here to stay. Also hiring managers are casting their nets wider to fill skill shortages and, are therefore, employing remote workers - why limit yourself by geography? Also, they’ve found that virtual interviews and remote recruitment actually saves time and resources, and for candidates too, no more booking a day off from work - video calls have become the norm for first stage interviews.
6) A Guide To Salary Ranges and Averages
With the rising cost of living is your company prepared to attract and retain the best talent in 2022?
SFR Recruitment Solutions advises on the following salary ranges and average salaries by job title.
This data has been taken from positions with both manufacturers and suppliers/distributors within the Architectural Ironmongery, Door Hardware, Locking Solutions and Access Control products sector, so very specific to our audience. If this salary information can help a business attract talent or, as important, retain industry experience and trained talent from leaving the sector, then it will have done a great job.