Oil price knock on effects in recruitment

Oil price knock on effects in recruitment


Hi to everyone in the LinkedIn-verse, this is my first article so I would appreciate any feedback either in comments or via a direct message.


As I’m sure everyone one is aware the oil prices around the world have dropped by a massive amount, moving from around $70 a barrel last March to about $40 a barrel March 2016 (information from NASDAQ’s website).


The first knock on effect I noticed, when the oil price started to drop, was an increase from applications from people who work on oil rigs, unfortunately as Newton Colmore Consulting recruit for the Medical Devices and Scientific Engineering fields we were not able to help these people as our clients have very specific requirements.


A few months after this we started to see applications from a number of Oil & Gas companies who offer project management and technology advice instead.  Although a few of our clients work in the Oil & Gas sector they also started to slow down their recruitment focus in this field.


Due to this it is only natural that companies in the Oil & Gas sector would start recruiting their urgent roles directly as it would be easier for them to find candidates, not specifically the best candidates as I’m sure specialist Oil & Gas recruitment companies would have active candidates that a company could not attract directly.


So as Oil & Gas recruitment companies started to find it difficult to successfully fill roles they did the things any company would do, they started to explore different sectors.  I myself have done this in the past when I recruited in the IT sector and the market fell through the floor.  A friend of mine who runs an Oil & Gas division was asking me advice as he had a large group of people working the Oil & Gas sector but only enough work for two consultants.


So this is where the oil price started to effect Newton Colmore Consulting.  My fellow director, Matthew Lowdon, and I have a very good reputation in the market place as we work closely with our clients meaning we have credibility that cannot be created overnight.  However I’ve noticed a lot of Oil & Gas companies add a ‘Medical Devices’ arm to their business, naturally this worries me but not because of competition (the more the merrier) but because these companies may not understand the Medical Devices sector.


When working for none specialist recruitment companies I became used to recruiters who would try and shoehorn an automotive quality engineer into a medical devices role thinking that ISO 13485 was not important. Another occasion, someone I worked with thought a project manager should be considered for a medical devices programme manager role as he had a degree within aerospace and had worked as an automotive engineer for two years.


One of the key things I learnt about the Medical Devices and Scientific sectors early on in 2009 is the recruitment process takes longer, you cannot rush the process as the people involved normally have a scientific mind-set.  With this in mind I have always given new consultants between six and nine months to show worth, where my experience when entering recruitment was three month max before you were given the boot.


If these companies entering into the Medical Devices sector put their consultants under the normal pressure people get in recruitment companies then I envision consultants bugging recruiting companies for feedback ten minutes after sending a CV.  I’ve noticed a couple of these companies using wording from the Newton Colmore Consulting website, which makes me think they are already cutting corners.  We are taking this as a complement as it means we must be doing something right.


Please, if you are entering into the Medical Devices market be patient with your consultants, they will not be a success overnight, please do not cut corners, as you will just add to the negative stereotype recruitment consultants get banded with and do not copy wording from other companies, people will realise you are just starting in the market and this could reflect badly on you.


It will be interesting to see how the oil prices will continue to effect the recruitment sector and I would be very interested to know how other recruiters, HR representatives and candidates are being effected.  So please write your thoughts or stories in the comments, if you want to share but do not want to give away who you are to the LinkedIn-verse please message me and I will write something in the comments instead to protect your identity.


I can only share from my point of view but I expect this is happening to other sectors, rather than just the Medical Devices sector so even if you are from another field please share your thoughts and stories.


Newton Colmore Consulting is a specialist recruitment company for the Medical Devices and Scientific sectors.  If you would like assistance recruiting or help finding a new role from consultants who understand your sector please get in contact;


Andrew Welsh

Newton Colmore Consulting – NewtonColmore.com

0121 268 2240 – enquires@newtoncolmore.com

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