Finding the right candidate is a challenge in a crowded market

Finding the right candidate is a challenge in a crowded market.


It’s no secret that there are a lot of candidates in the market at the moment.

So it should be easy to find the person you need, right?

Well – maybe.


Hiring at a senior technical level is a complex, nuanced process. It’s vital to boil down the requirement so that you have absolute clarity about what the role will entail and the type of person and skill set you’ll need. The multiple competencies required – business capability, technical understanding, regulatory experience – make it challenging to find one person with all the necessary skills.

And whether or not the candidate is currently working shouldn’t be the determining factor as to their suitability.


The passive process

The temptation in a recessionary market is to advertise the role and wait for the candidates to come flooding in. But that’s a purely passive approach, and there’s no guarantee that the right candidate will apply. Even if you find someone who fits, you haven’t tested the market – you’re just dealing with the best person who happened to land in your lap.

But even so, it’s an incredibly time consuming process. The sheer time involved in dealing with, say, 200 applications, interviewing 20 candidates, bringing 5 back is huge. Although it might feel like a cost effective and productive process, it’s actually hugely expensive in terms of time spent, and it brings no certainty of a successful conclusion. It can go on for months, and often does. And all the while the opportunity cost of the unfilled role increases and increases.


The active process

Working with a recruiter you trust allows you to define your requirements and step away from the process and the noise.

Because finding the right candidate is a challenge in a crowded market.

It may be that the recruiter advertises. But they will also tap into their networks, approach potential candidates in competitor companies, scope the market and present a balanced list of candidates for you to consider. That’s certainly how I set about it. The noise in the market and the number of channels are distractions that take you away from what you need to do – taking a brief, understanding the role and bringing a compelling shortlist from the entirety of the market is exactly what the recruiter’s there to do.


And once we’ve created the list, we’ll continue on; engaging with the candidates, selling the opportunity, highlighting the employer brand, working all the time to make sure that when you pick your candidate and make the offer, it’s accepted. It’s a full time role. It’s my full time role, in fact.


That’s why my customers work with me. Because I save them time and money. I provide them with an excellent route to hiring the right people at the right time.

Ultimately recruitment is like any other service. You pay an expert to do it well because learning on the fly how to do it yourself alongside your actual job is expensive, time consuming and wildly inefficient. It’s why I engage an accountant rather than doing the company accounts and VAT myself. I could google it and save myself the fee – but it would be a false economy.


Hiring technical people who can solve business problems isn’t easy. There aren’t a lot of good candidates around, they have lots of options and the process is high touch.

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  • Client (Head of IT)

    I can't say that I enjoy dealing with Recruiters but Justin changed my opinion - honest, follows the client's lead, does the hard work and not a pressure merchant. Will use him again when I need to recruit.

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  • Candidate – Placed as IT Manager

    Justin is an extremely enthusiastic and dedicated professional. He has a unique knowledge and in-depth experience of the IT sector and candidate market. He provides a credible and commercial resourcing service to the business. Rather than throwing CV’s my way he absolutely gets our vision. Justin has a real knack for understanding the needs of the business and sourcing quality candidates to match those needs. His approach is refreshing and he is an absolute pleasure to work with.

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    Justin is easy to work with with good communication skills. He followed up on interviews and was a good source of advice. I would use him again & recommend him to others.

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  • Client (CIO)

    Having worked with Justin on a number of assignments both at my current organisation and a number of those that I have worked at over the past few years I am please to recommend him and his organisation as an excellent provider of quality candidates to fulfil your entire IT sourcing needs. Justin becomes an extension to your organisation when seeking new talent on both a contract and permanent basis as takes the time to understand your organisations workings before searching for and matching the skills you need. Justin balances the technical, cultural and interpersonal skills of each candidates so the fit your requirements very closely and prepares each candidate before they even walk through your door so they have the best possible chance when faced with attending an interview. Justin fast tracks the process of hiring new staff by only putting forward the right sort of candidates first time so you don’t need to go through hundreds of interviews before finding a shortlist of possible candidates that fit.

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    I have worked with Alastair as both a client and a customer. As a client the service he provided was A1, he listened to my requirements and carefully vetted candidates to ensure they met my needs. He provided great information regarding candidate types and salaries and helped address any concerns I had about individual interviewees. As a customer, he gave me relevant information about the role and ensured I was briefed sufficiently to interview effectively. He sorted contract issues and gave me honest and sage advice. I whole heartedly recommend Alastair and will definitely be using his services again.

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    - Candidate – Placed as Senior Java Developer – Investment Banking, Zurich

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  • IT Director

    I've worked with Justin off and on for 7-8 years and in recent times he has become my "go to" recruiter, having placed 20+ staff, with the businesses I've lead . Finding a recruiter that values the strategic relationship, satisfaction and well-being of his client, over the commission of making a placement, is a rare thing. Combined with Justin's adaptability to the needs of those he is working with, his flexible approach and candidate quality - you have a winner. Justin takes the time to understand the dynamics and personalities within the businesses he is recruiting for and finds candidates that fit the qualifications needs and culture of your business. I'd recommend Justin and Vocative to any technology company looking to find great talent and work with a likeable, professional and effective recruiter

    - IT Director