Happy Friday!

A round-up of thinking, news, and interesting things for your lunch break.


  • Suzi Fox from our Executive Search team talks about the rise of female leadership in the FTSE top 350 firms. There are two factors at play; government policy and the leadership within the company are linked to a significant increase in the diversity of boards.
  • RESEARCH PARTICIPATION REQUEST. We’re keen to understand how employers think the recruitment landscape will look post-COVID, and what shape they believe their workforces will take. In order to get this insight, we have developed a short survey. We’ll be running a webinar about this subject on 18th June. We want to use the results from the employer survey (along with data from a parallel survey we’re running with candidates) to spark discussion amongst our panellists. The link to the survey is here: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/3MH69GT It’s live now and will run until the end of play next Friday 5th June. You can pre-register for the webinar to hear the results here.

In the UK:

  • The number of young people not in education, employment or training rose in the first quarter of the year. The number of so-called Neets grew by 6,000 to 771,000 in the three months to March, compared with the same period last year, the Office for National Statistics said. This works out at 11.2 per cent of those aged 16 to 24, up by 0.2 percentage points on the 2019 equivalent. Young men were more likely than women to fall into the Neet category. Of the 771,000 Neets in Britain, 404,000 were men and a record low of 366,000 were women. The majority of Neets were economically inactive, with 41.6 per cent saying that they were looking and available for work. There were an estimated 202,000
  • Covid-19 crisis could set women back decades, experts fear. The coronavirus pandemic is having a devastating effect on gender equality and could set women back decades, experts have said on the eve of the 50th anniversary of the Equal Pay Act. In a week during which it was revealed that women are bearing the brunt of extra childcare and housework and are losing jobs in greater numbers than men, campaigners, politicians and work experts said a dearth of female voices at the heart of government also risks putting 50 years of progress into reverse.
  • There are signs of life in the City of London according to Bloomberg. The first wave of returnees will likely be traders, mergers and acquisitions bankers, and other professionals subject to stiff legal compliance and confidentiality rules. They’ll find a radically altered environment. Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc will direct employees through thermal imaging and temperature checks at the entrances of its offices near Liverpool Street station. High-rise office workers can expect similar measures, from restricted access to elevators and kitchens to marked social distance boundaries on the floors to one-way staircases. Most firms will distribute face masks and other protective equipment to employees.

In the wider world:

  • The global plunge in hiring driven by the pandemic may be bottoming out as countries including France and Italy show signs of improvement, according to new data from LinkedIn. But hiring rates remain down sharply from before the outbreak and subsequent shutdowns, and millions of people are still losing their jobs at an unprecedented rate. Among the latest findings:
    • China's hiring rate is now flat from a year ago, after a three-month rebound.
    • Europe is in the very early stages of recovery.
    • The U.S. hiring rate is flat over the past two weeks but is still down around 34% compared with the same period last year.
  • Amazon is to offer full-time jobs to 125,000 of the 175,000 part-time employees it hired in America this year to deal with a surge in demand during the coronavirus pandemic. I talked about Amazon and its investment in staff training in my blog a few weeks ago.
  • 'We are losers in this crisis': research finds lockdowns reinforcing gender inequality. In Spain, more than 170,000 people have signed a petition calling for urgent measures to address the fact that women have been left to bear the brunt of the lockdown. “As a result of this crisis, many women will be forced to give up ‘paid work’ in order to care for their families,” the petition notes, urging the government to adopt measures such as legally enshrining working from home and facilitating greater flexibility.
  • HBR share their 8 Questions Employers Should Ask About Reopening. Including: How can we meet employees’ growing mental and emotional health needs? “Many have suffered profound losses during the pandemic and have not had sufficient opportunity to grieve. Almost all of us have experienced loneliness. There will be more cases of anxiety and depression, and some survivors and their families will have post-traumatic stress syndrome. Access to mental health services was often poor before the pandemic, and needs will be greater now. Employers must step up to this challenge. Most employers in our survey (58%) report increasing access to tele-behavioral health such as audio or video therapy sessions, while 83% report increasing communication about Employee Assistance Programs.”

Things I’ve liked this week:


  • The rise in authentic content as opposed to studio created content can be used to increase trust – use the fact your audience know you’re not editing it to your advantage
  • Increase in NEETS might present opportunities for apprentice and entry level recruitment but those out of work, education or training may need more support in soft skills ahead of their application whether that’s confidence or coaching around transferable skills
  • Working from home isn’t for everyone. Banter and daily contact with colleagues and teammates are really important for creativity and innovation. When people start returning to offices, I think the key point will be around giving employees choice
  • Based on the number of people I saw running, exercising and stretching in London Fields this morning, I expect there is going to be a real backlash around commuting again in the future. I for one, can’t imagine getting on the Central Line in the heat again out of choice!!! Employers might need to start thinking about how they accommodate people travelling to work in a different way (cycling or running) with secure spaces for a bike, changing rooms, and showers, for example.

If you’d like to chat about any of the above or share your experiences, feel free to reach out!