How 2018 unfolded for Jenrick Commercial and our prediction for 2019 by Trevor Lee
2018 wasn’t a particularly straightforward year for many businesses around the UK, however despite this 2018 was another steady year for us as a business. We saw our business thrive and peak in 2017, with it being our best year ever, and 2018 saw us level on par with that. So for us as a business having this continuity in strength was reassuring and gave us confidence despite the media advertising otherwise due to Brexit.
In Quarter 4 we did see the usual reduction of volume of candidate’s applications. We do find this to be the norm prior to Christmas, many candidates often put aside looking for a new role in November until the New Year so this wasn’t a surprise. Although we did see a lull in candidate movement at the back end of the year, a point to note is that not one candidate we spoke to advised that they were staying put until after Brexit.
What has been a surprise is that normally we do see higher response of volume on applications and candidates looking for work at this point of the year, following the theme ‘New year, new career’, however applications have been far lighter compared to the start of 2018. This highlights that the war on good, quality talent is becoming even more difficult.
On the flip side the volume of new jobs has been very steady, even rising slightly, since Jan 1st. This is based on our client growth as well as the strong relationships we have formed with our current clients – around 91% of our business is referred of repeat. January and February have been a great start to the year with both placement of permanent and contract positions increasing so we are seeing no slow down with new business.
Where’s the future at?
It goes without saying that Brexit will no doubt shape and define where the market goes. The likelihood is increasing that we will extend the negotiations and not leave as planned on the 29th March. While we are unsure as to how long the delay will be, it could dominate through to the end of 2019 meaning a steady and cautious, if not unpredictable, year.
Whatever the outcome is; a deal as planned, a delayed deal or even a no deal then we do foresee the market to the cautious throughout 2019. Obviously the sooner the decision is made then the more likely it will be that we will see stability in our industry and the overall market conditions of the UK bringing confidence back in and normality taking hold.
As most of our clients tend to sit within either; Technology, Professional Services, Financial Services we definitely haven’t seen any change with new opportunities, however the market is all around confident and if confidence is high then opportunity will flow.
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