Accounting & Finance - Market Update Q3

Head of accounting and finance, Brad Gatehouse, and his team give their take on the last quarter and a more positive recruitment landscape.

As with the previous, this quarter saw the implications of CV19 rearing its ugly head, with changes in alert levels and a lock down for the economic hub of Auckland. During the first lockdown, we saw almost 80 percent of our pipeline either go on hold or cancelled completely. However, this time around there was far less uncertainty. Most clients moved seamlessly to working from home and only a handful of open roles were negatively impacted. This quarter also saw some of the roles that went on hold during the first lock down come live again.

Returning Kiwis 

The last quarter has seen a steady flow of skilled Kiwis returning from offshore, having identified NZ as an oasis in the global CV19 desert. Although ‘the virus’ is the most highlighted reason, other themes include the looming elections and social unrest in the US, Californian wildfires, and the ongoing Brexit issues in the UK. Many of the senior talent returning are arriving with money in the bank to invest in not only housing but also businesses. As always, the upcoming NZ election is contributing to our client’s uncertainty and resulting in resistance to hiring.

Local opportunities

Locally based candidates, particularly senior, have become more marketable as the pool remains considerably smaller due to our borders restrictions. Although the volume of live roles shrunk, we have noticed the roles being recruited have our client’s requirements clearly defined and well planned. This reflects a more considered long term view to recruitment which is refreshing.

Candidates are realising if they are unhappy in their current role, it is going to be a long wait to CV19 and with no end in sight any time soon and at least a couple more years of turmoil ahead (based on Spanish Flu). Hence why we’re seeing them become more open to unsolicited approaches. This applies more to senior candidates, as junior and mid-level applicants are still more concerned with their job security.

Ups & Downs

Unfortunately, the last quarter has been tough for many and we have seen several recruitment companies shut their doors for good. On a more positive note and as with most other industries, we are seeing the ‘buy local’ message being applied within the recruitment sector too. This has been great for 100 percent New Zealand-owned, Tribe!

On reflection, this quarter felt a bit like Groundhog Day but with a more positive recruitment landscape. I hope that post-election we will have a couple of strong months of activity prior to the seasonal downturn at Christmas, when recruitment grinds almost to a halt.