Lacking Labor

I work in a recruitment agency.  I am finding out that not a lot of people know exactly what recruiters do, and though I am not here to talk about what we do I will say that the gist of our job is to sell people…at least that is how my co-workers phrase it jokingly.  So, people are our products.  We evaluate, pre-screen, and interview candidates to make sure that our company clients are getting the best and most proactive employees they can.  We are not alone either since Grafton Recruitment (where I work) has six top competitors, Manpower, CPL Jobs, Adecco, Hays, Randstad, and PeoplePlace, all located in the Prague area.  Essentially, there are seven of us recruitment agencies and we are all after one thing: a good quality candidate.  Sounds easy enough, right?  Actually, there is a lot challenges behind this.

The biggest challenge is that the Czech Republic actually has the lowest unemployment rate in the European Union at around 3.5%.  That means that 96.5% of everyone living in the Czech Republic has a job already.  Seven recruitment agencies competing against each other in Prague does not sound like such an easy feat now, does it?  So, our agency has to do what all the other agencies have to do: outsource.  We connect with and contact candidates in other countries and try to persuade them to move to the Czech Republic.  (Our job is both to sell the city of Prague and our candidate selection to our clients.)  It is not always an easy job, but Grafton is still thriving as a recruitment agency.

Another challenge is the language requirements of our clients.  For example, I just learned today that German speakers are rare and in high demand.  While reviewing a poorly written CV with my supervisor, I would have wrote the person off and put them in the reject pile.  However, my supervisor pointed out that because the candidate spoke German, which is surprisingly hard to come by, we had to select them.  This blew my mind to think that some language abilities weighed more than the actual qualifications of the candidates themselves.

With all these complications though, Grafton still remains that top of its industry by being one of the largest agencies present in six countries across Europe.  So a little lack of labor never slowed us down.