History repeats for recruitment tech companies

QJumpers general manager Simon Oldham

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Kiwi companies are unable to find suitable talent, forcing two recruitment technology companies to adapt rapidly to meet demands.

Recruitment software QJumpers' general manager, Simon Oldham, says New Zealand’s labour market is going through a similar skill shortage to 2007.

“In 2007, New Zealand had close to 65,000 job vacancies advertised per month, and people from all over the world were poaching talent from the country,” Mr Oldham says.

“We had Australian and English companies putting on talent fairs to snare New Zealanders for offshore jobs. This appears to be happening again, with a lot of our Kiwi talent going overseas.”

Mr Oldham says while global trends are seeing companies managing recruitment processes in-house rather than through recruitment agencies, “it’s not working, because the applicants aren’t of suitable quality.”

He says New Zealand companies are heading “back to the future” by returning to agencies, which shoulder-tap candidates not actively hunting for jobs on channels such as Seek and Trade Me Jobs.

But this is causing the process to become disjointed, with some applicants coming into companies’ recruitment software system through job boards, and others being submitted by agencies.

QJumpers’ software, which allows companies to post, manage and track job listings through as Seek and Trade Me Jobs, has partnered with NBR Talent to streamline the process.

NBR Talent is an online recruitment platform that works with several recruitment agencies including Beyond Recruitment, Experis, and Alpha Recruitment, to collate suitable candidates from multiple sources.

The partnership allows clients to reach more of the labour market by streamlining applications from traditional channels and recruitment agencies.

"The end goal for companies is being able to find the right talent, and right now they're struggling with that, so we've opened up a whole new channel and source of people they haven't been able to access," Mr Oldham says.

NBR Talent’s business development manager Richard Webb says the partnership provides a technology platform to ensure companies can access a greater number of talented hires.

“There’s an irrefutable 80/20 split where you’ve got 20% of the labour market actively looking at job boards but it’s quite difficult for a company to access the other 80% of the market,” Mr Webb says.

 “NBR Talent has 20 recruitment agencies submitting candidates onto its platform. Because of how we’ve put together that network of recruitment agencies and how the platform works, we’re able to effectively access candidates that are in that other 80% of the market,” Mr Webb says.

Mr Webb says having a blend of specialist recruitment agencies with their own unique styles of recruiting means there are many different candidate pools clients are able to access.

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Frankly this sounds more like an advertorial rather than a proper assessment of the NZ job market.

A quick search on the QJUMPERS website for IT positions (any speciality) and no location specified (essentially anywhere in NZ) returned a grand total of 6 jobs. I'll say that again 6 Jobs!!!

4 of these I would deem to help desk /it support roles which are not exactly renowned for paying well.

Of the one that actually did specify a salary range (30 - 40K) it was hardly more than the minimum wage given the fact that unpaid overtime would likely be expected.

Skill shortage - what skill shortage?? - Perhaps they meant the willingness to work for low wages.

As for my past experience of recruitment agents - some making the usual stereotypical quips about the Irish and Alcohol on first meeting and subsequently blasely admitting they didn't know much about IT - well, it didn't exactly inspire any confidence in their level of professionalism.

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