2019 is passed and with that comes a time to reflect on the patterns, changes and continuity in the marketplace. The agency scene in our core areas has gone through some adaptations, and consequently clients’ recruitment requirements have too.
A hugely noticeable trend over the last year was how the digital aspect of PR and social media roles has yet again grown. Agencies have shown an increased demand for more digitally specialist roles, and have been much more specific with the skills they want candidates to have, allowing us to be very specific in who we are looking for.
For many of my clients, a struggle they have faced this year has been economic instability fuelled budget cuts from their own clients. This has impacted their marketing and PR spend, resulting in more project-based work, rather than much longer term, guaranteed retainers. This has meant that some agencies have unfortunately had to make some redundancies, shuffle their teams and re-evaluate which intended hires are essential. The positive to be taken from these cases is that such changes have enabled agencies to explore new business opportunities and connect with new clients, broadening their portfolios.
On the candidate side, I’ve noticed that they seem pleased to have more of a relationship with their recruiter on a longer term, and they view the process themselves as less transactional – which is great news for me! Candidates have been evidently more interested in getting our advice, not only about their job search, but about the market and their industry in general. Candidate relationships are incredibly important to us, and we strive to provide the most personalised process possible, so this progression has been great.
We have certainly seen more freelance and contract-based roles being sought after by agencies, with them seeing it to align with their increase in project-based work. This has helped to bring about faster turn-arounds, allowing for a nice quick pace and momentum.
In 2020, I’m expecting to see more contract and freelance roles, and more digital niches like SEO, paid social and PPC becoming even more of a focus for clients. This will give us the opportunity to build more specific digital talent pools to offer our clients the forward thinking, specialist solutions we always strive to deliver!
If you are looking to grow your agency team, or open to new opportunities, get in touch with us and we would be happy to help!