Soundbites: July/August 2023

“In your sector(s), what skills do too many candidates lack?”

Dominic Morton

London managing director, Forsyth Barnes

“Although the market has been affected by current economic/geopolitical situations, I wouldn’t say it was unexpected. Larger organisations will always be impacted more; smaller oganisations, who are potentially more nimble, are able to adapt and thrive. As a result, three of the most in-demand skills we have seen are adaptability, flexibility and relationship building. The surge in working from home has created challenges for firms to foster an environment that encourages collaboration and team work. The ability to form relationships and work effectively in a virtual environment is vital in today’s world. Those are the types of candidates who are highly sought after.”

Anjum Rajan

Managing director, Vira International

“The skill most lacking is multi-tasking. Multi-tasking and perpetuating a positive attitude are of critical importance for hospitality workers, who often work long hours and must be prepared to jump in wherever it’s needed. Workers who rise to this challenge without exhibiting negativity are more likely to succeed; however, this skill is in decline. Another important skill that is lacking in the hospitality industry is customer service. Hospitality businesses rely on positive customer interaction and experience. With the younger generation often interacting via technological devices, customer service and satisfaction has declined.”

Sam Spoors

CEO and founder, Talentheads

“The skills shortage in the UK is spreading. What was once confined to sectors such as housebuilders, construction, hospitality and healthcare is now noticeable in areas such as technology, digital and specialist engineering positions. One area that is focused on more recently is AI knowledge. This is particularly prevalent in the tech sector, but also with roles such as business development, sales, marketing and automating processes in manufacturing, engineering and retail. Companies are asking candidates whether they are up to date in their knowledge of AI and – and many aren’t equipped to answer such a question.”

Image credit | iStock

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