In a bid to stay ahead of their competitors, businesses have received a timely recommendation to leverage their hiring schedules.

This advice comes as the number of people searching for jobs in the UK experiences its first increase in over two years, following a slump in hiring activities across the country.

FDM Group, a company dedicated to bringing people and technology together, has advised organizations of all sizes to seize the hiring slump as an ideal opportunity to access top talent and align with their evolving tech needs.

Recent research conducted by KPMG and the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) indicates that job seekers have surged for the first time in 25 months, mirroring the decline in hiring trends nationwide.

The slowdown in recruitment can be attributed to economic uncertainty and delayed decision-making by firms. However, in an era where technology is evolving at an accelerated pace, businesses require skilled professionals to develop and implement these advancements.

Sheila Flavell, Chief Operating Officer at FDM Group, emphasized the importance of talent acquisition during economic slowdowns:

“While periods of economic slowdown may appear daunting, they also present unique opportunities for businesses to prioritize talent acquisition. The recent surge in job applicants signifies a shift in the labor market dynamics.”

Flavell added, “Organizations that embrace hiring during these times will benefit from reduced competition, access to a diverse pool of top talent, alignment with evolving tech needs, and a boost to their employer brand and future-readiness.”

Here are five reasons why the present moment is ideal for initiating hiring efforts:

  1. Access to top talent amid reduced competition: By commencing hiring endeavors now, companies can tap into a highly skilled talent pool without facing intense competition from rivals. With reduced competition, businesses may find it easier and less expensive to attract top talent. Furthermore, negotiating favorable salary and benefits packages can help reduce recruitment costs in the long run.
  2. Alignment with evolving tech needs: During an economic slump, it becomes particularly crucial for organizations to invest in technology that enhances efficiency and business productivity. Hiring top talent skilled in fields such as AI or machine learning enables businesses to automate processes and boost productivity. Additionally, capitalizing on talent acquisition now allows businesses to future-proof their operations, ensuring they possess the necessary expertise to hit the ground running when the economy rebounds.
  3. Promotion of diversity and inclusion: Diversity and inclusion have emerged as integral pillars of successful organizations. Actively hiring during an economic downturn enables businesses to capitalize on the diverse talent available in the market. Inclusive hiring processes that tap into alternate sources of talent can help organizations fill their specialist skills gaps, going beyond traditional sources such as universities and colleges. By reaching out to underrepresented groups, including individuals with disabilities, those with extended career breaks, and those from low-income backgrounds, businesses can create a more diverse workforce that is better equipped to tackle the complex technological challenges facing companies today. Additionally, a diverse workforce strengthens a company’s reputation, attracting a wider customer base and improving employee engagement. Building a diverse talent pipeline during this opportune moment will yield long-term dividends.
  4. Capitalising on upskilling opportunities: During a hiring slump, professionals actively seek opportunities to upskill and expand their knowledge base. By actively hiring, companies can tap into this pool of motivated individuals who are eager to acquire new skills and advance their careers. Offering training and development programs to both existing and new hires not only enhances their capabilities but also improves employee loyalty and retention. Building a culture of continuous learning and professional growth sets businesses apart from their competitors, making them more attractive to both current and potential employees.
  5. Strengthening the employer brand: The manner in which companies navigate challenging times significantly impacts their employer brand and long-term success. Taking proactive steps to build talent pipelines during an economic slump sends a powerful message to both internal and external stakeholders. It demonstrates an organization’s resilience, forward-thinking approach, and commitment to its employees. A strong employer brand attracts top talent, fosters employee loyalty, and helps create a positive workplace culture. By seizing the hiring opportunity now, businesses can fortify their brand and gain a competitive advantage in the market.





Amelia Brand is the Editor for HRreview, and host of the HR in Review podcast series. With a Master’s degree in Legal and Political Theory, her particular interests within HR include employment law, DE&I, and wellbeing within the workplace. Prior to working with HRreview, Amelia was Sub-Editor of a magazine, and Editor of the Environmental Justice Project at University College London, writing and overseeing articles into UCL’s weekly newsletter. Her previous academic work has focused on philosophy, politics and law, with a special focus on how artificial intelligence will feature in the future.