Managing Recruitment and Workforce Planning Through a Recession

Just as the recruitment market had begun to stabilise after the COVID-19 pandemic with an increase in demand for remote working, UK businesses now face yet more economic uncertainty following the recent announcement of an expected recession.

In what is currently a candidate-driven market, how can businesses navigate recruitment and workforce planning effectively as we start to face these new challenges?

Firstly, let’s identify the challenges:

1) Hiring freezes

One of the initial steps many SMEs are likely to take is to halt any plans for increasing headcount in a bid to reduce cost and retain as many current staff as possible. This poses a challenge for business owners who will need to adapt future growth plans and assess their existing talent pool to fill in any gaps.

2) Organisational restructures

Workforce planning and reviewing where cost savings can be made will be commonplace. This in turn will lead to job shortages, a surging number of jobseekers, and higher unemployment rates.

3) An employer-led market

The post-pandemic recruitment market took a dramatic shift to become candidate-driven, and highly competitive. The expected recession could mean employers hold the upper hand as there will be a wider candidate pool to choose from. However, this doesn’t always mean top talent will be available - many employees may favour job security and they will be less likely to actively search for a new role.

None of these challenges are easy fixes and they will need a people and talent management strategy within your business plans.

How IHRS can support you through these challenges: 

An assessment and redesign of your recruitment strategy. As the labour market dynamic shifts, as should your recruitment strategy. We’ll help you to stay on top of market trends and candidate demands to ensure that your recruitment strategy is able to attract the best talent.

Support with workforce planning. Through an analysis of your organisation’s current structure, we can assist with streamlining your workforce and identify where cost savings can be made. If required, we can also support you to navigate any restructures or redundancies.

Improvement of your workplace culture. Managing employee morale and stopping resignations will be key for maintaining engagement and motivation. Let us share our knowledge and experience to ensure your workplace culture withstands this difficult period.

There’s no doubt the news of an expected recession will have a detrimental impact on many UK businesses, so it is essential to start thinking about your future plans now to stay ahead of the game.

Get in contact with us at IHRS today to discuss how we can help you navigate through this difficult time.

Contact us at: or call 07872 118 264

About the author

The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the view of UKGI.

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