New research finds that companies may not be doing all they can to take advantage of the talent influx, despite having an ever-growing pool of candidates to choose from. 

Arctic Shores, a company which provides behaviour-based assessments, has found that there is a significant opportunity for HR to grasp the top talent but may be currently failing to do so.

Almost half of companies (48 per cent) reported receiving more applications as a result of COVID-19 when recruiting. In addition to this, this seems to be working to HR’s advantage as around two-thirds (66 per cent) said they saw an improvement in candidate quality.

Despite this, around a fifth of businesses (19 per cent) found that access to top talent was the biggest challenge for 2021, showing that organisations may not be honing in on the talent that is now at their fingertips.

In addition, only less than one in 10 companies (7 per cent) are sending all the candidates some form of feedback. Although this may prove difficult with the growing number of people that are job-hunting, this allows companies to stand out as caring employers who are committed to providing candidates with a positive recruitment process and ways to improve.

The research also moved on to analyse hiring processes in 2021 and what this would entail. Two-fifths of companies (40 per cent) asserted that 11-30 per cent of their hires were going to be for new roles, illustrating the potential for companies to improve diversity, both of people and thought, within their firms.

A further half (50 per cent) of those surveyed said they would be hiring remote workers this year. It appears that many HR teams have now adjusted to remote working as remote working constraints were not cited as a top challenge for this year.

However, only a third of companies (33 per cent) reported that remote interviews have provided better hiring outcomes. Almost half (45 per cent) stated that that the results obtained were the same as in-person interviews whilst a fifth (18 per cent) confessed that they had worse hiring outcomes than before.

Robert Newry, CEO and co-founder of Arctic Shores, said:

This is an incredibly busy time for hiring managers, but we now have an opportunity to help the unemployment crisis. Companies are being faced with swathes of talent, and candidates going out of their way to be creative and clever about the application process, but organisations don’t have the processes to sift through and respond.

Talent Acquisition teams in growth companies are under huge pressure to fill roles quickly – the average time to hire in such companies is 30 days, which doesn’t give time to manage this increased level of candidate applications. The focus has been almost entirely on the efficiency of processing the volume to the detriment of candidate experience and opportunity for all. The requirement for 2021 will be to digitise the recruitment process so it’s also more inclusive and respectful of candidates.

*To obtain this research, Arctic Shores surveyed 250 business leaders, heads of talent acquisition, and HR directors.





Monica Sharma is an English Literature graduate from the University of Warwick. As Editor for HRreview, her particular interests in HR include issues concerning diversity, employment law and wellbeing in the workplace. Alongside this, she has written for student publications in both England and Canada. Monica has also presented her academic work concerning the relationship between legal systems, sexual harassment and racism at a university conference at the University of Western Ontario, Canada.