Demand for office support staff strengthens in City

Employment prospects for Executive PAs and business support staff in the City are looking bright for 2010. That’s according to Crone Corkill the specialist office support recruiter.

Despite the downturn hitting the financial markets hard, demand for good business support staff in the City remains strong and talented executive support professionals are in short supply. In the last few weeks in particular, many candidates have started to receive counter offers and multiple job offers.  Additionally, as conditions slowly improve, the recruiter says that it is beginning to see an increase in staffing budgets. “City institutions are starting to convert temporary hires into permanent positions, showing that that head count freezes on permanent hires are lifting. This is very encouraging for candidates who are going into temporary positions in the hope of going permanent” says Helena Gray, Managing Consultant from Crone Corkill’s City team.

Many businesses are losing out on the best talent though, Crone Corkill warns, due to over lengthy hiring processes and candidates registering with multiple agencies to try and secure the best position in what has been a tough market.

“The shortage of good, solid career PAs and secretaries within the banking sector is an ongoing problem,” say Lee Dempster, Operations Director from Crone Corkill.  “Many businesses assume that in the current climate they have their pick of top calibre candidates but this just isn’t the case – this type of candidate is always in short supply, they may be being well looked after by their current employers and aren’t willing to move. Good candidates will be able to secure several interviews and choose the best option offered to them but with the lengthy recruitment processes that the recession has created, many are snapped up before other employers have made an offer.”

 “Confidence is definitely returning to the City. Business support roles within equity research is another area where we’re seeing roles come back as the market picks up. With October to December showing the highest level of temporary and permanent jobs registered by some distance, it is looking like 2010 will start off in a more positive footing than any time in the last year”.

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