Previous Categories Arrow
Next categories Arrow

Skill vs Culture?

Is there a shortage of skill in certain sectors or a shortage of flexibility?

In my years of recruitment, I have been fortunate enough to work with a range of successful companies, from start-ups to Corporates. I enjoy working with everyone.

To this day, many clients have followed me, hiring managers still call for help. Why?

People buy from people as we all know, years of working together allows you both to understand each other and ultimately how you both work and what works for you.
They know you understand how they work, what they like, and that you can sell the business as they would to potential talent, and spot the right person.

Being blunt, to the point, and sometimes being too truthful (I’m sure those of you who know me would agree), having sheer grit and determination and maintaining a “Never giving up” attitude will get you there and your contact will trust that you will get their role filled.
This attitude has often been the case and the frustrations come when clients have a “non-flexible” spec and a role that “John” has been doing for ten years.
Just because “John” took on more responsibilities than he needed to during his 10 years does not mean more “John’s” exist, at least not straight off the bat! Filling someone’s boots is not always possible.

Why do clients struggle to hire and recruiters struggle to fill the role?

I genuinely believe there is a shifting mindset, the classic job spec aka the “wish list” is not as important, sure – skills and experience count, but more and more attention is being paid to personality and cultural fit.
Managers have become more flexible and are now looking to train and develop rather than expecting all areas to be ticked on day one. Which is the way it should be.

I have read/overheard scaremongers saying there is a shortage of Cyber Security / IT Security skills in the current market – Rubbish, there are always capable candidates out there – In my opinion it’s more that there was/is a shortage of companies, or more to the point managers, who should be leaders/teachers/ educators, willing to develop and nurture and actually teach their staff – This has so many benefits, keeping staff interested, healthy, happy, accredited, productive and most importantly retained – allowing the business to be more profitable!

One company specifically blew my mind in terms of flexibility. The owner was a genuine guy, he didn’t want people to tick all the boxes – he wanted to train and develop staff in an industry that everyone wants to get into – Security.
He would specifically say “do not send me people who can do this job – get me people that have some skills and fit my culture, I will do the rest”.
This one client, he never lost any members of staff I placed – why would they leave if they fit, they fit.

Ultimately it is our responsibility as recruiters to understand the candidates we work with (as well as clients) in more detail. I am not just referring to their CV, recruiters should care about personality and soft skills, this will open many more doors….

Of course, it’s not possible in every industry/sector, times are changing, people are changing we need to work together and change a preconceived perception that job specs rule and the “John used to do this” attitude.
Be honest with your hiring manager or HR / internal contact – we know they don’t have all the skills, however, we think you should talk to them because they fit the ‘person’ you told us you were looking for….

It does come down to your relationship with the hiring manager / internal / hr contact – if they trust you as they should then they will listen and take advice – if you don’t have that relationship you need it, so try something different it may help build a relationship and establish trust!!

We have all been there – with roles that haven’t been filled for an age and you seem to be going round in circles – some just waiting for that nugget to appear.
Grab the role by the horns and recognise something needs to change, Consult! We love to call ourselves Consultants so be consultative. We know what the market looks like and what skills are available, pass this info on – the client may not be aware – you’re the expert and they’re paying you for this service!

It may not work in all cases but when it does, that sense of achievement and pride when you have built teams and helped a company grow into a successful organisation is amazing, and nothing develops trust like delivery

If you don’t try and change something be prepared to go round and round……

Close the form

Drop us your CV to be added into our candidate database.


Thank you.
Your application was sent successfully.

Please check your email for a record of your application.