''Challenging'' times for procurement job market

23 November 2009

23 November 2009 | Allie Anderson

Finding buyers to fill vacancies remains a challenge even though the market is flooded with candidates, a recruitment specialist has said.

According to Nicola Linkleter, executive director of the procurement arm of global search company Badenoch and Clark, the economic downturn has resulted in so many equally qualified purchasers job-hunting that it makes hiring the right person harder than ever.

"Employers can create retention issues for themselves if they hire overly qualified and over-experienced candidates," commented Linkleter. She added that when filling positions, managers should carefully assess "the precise skills and experience needed to ensure that candidates are neither under nor overqualified for their role".

In the September/October edition of the company's Professional Talent Spotlight, a commentary on recruitment trends in several sectors, Linkleter also noted that a category management approach to purchasing is increasingly adopted in order to achieve cost savings and efficiencies.

She highlighted large central government bodies as taking this approach. "Candidates will need to have demonstrable experience within specialisms such as professional services and marketing to remain highly desirable," she said.

Elsewhere, there is an increasing focus on bringing commercialism into public sector procurement.

Previously, according to Linkleter, candidates have been reluctant to switch from the private to the public sector because of unfamiliarity with OJEU procedures and "process-heavy" procurement processes.

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