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Pathmotion gets more out of Facebook for recruitment

pathmotion-logoOn Friday I was asked if I would do a review of Pathmotion, who see themselves as specialists in social media for recruitment. Obviously there are a lot of people in this space now, but I was keen to have a look and see what they were doing, particularly as it was related to Facebook.

Although I struggle with Facebook personally, one cannot avoid the fact that you need to take it seriously so I am always open to ideas. So I agreed to let David Rivel the co-founder to show me around their application.pathmotion

Very quickly I was impressed and although it is not aimed at recruiters as such, it will give you some thoughts on how to engage with your prospective candidates. The product is aimed at the larger recruiters and the same could be said for the larger recruitment consultancies and if I was to guess this would work particularly well for graduate recruits/school leavers.

I think what stands out from the Facebook app is that it is not coming from HR or the Management but from its own employees, which may scare a few companies. Basically it is using Facebook as a platform to enable prospective candidates to ask questions in an informal context to their employees, basically like a conversation over a coffee.

What actually struck me was not so much in its ability to promote the company, but for a less obvious benefit. That by giving their staff responsibility in the recruitment process, they are at the same time developing their own career.

From a candidates point of view, it will be a good way to get noticed before an interview and I would have thought it would make sense for recruiters to encourage their candidates to participate, as I am sure it would give them an added advantage and help them be more prepared.

All in all there is nothing really I can criticise as the system functions smoothly and apart from the ability for candidates to interact with the company the company can use the viral function of Facebook to promote their vacancies too.

All in all I think the best thing is to take a look at the companies that are already using the system, this will give you a better feel of what is achievable.

·  NHS Leadership Academy: http://career-inspiration.com/by/nhs-graduates

·  Eversheds: http://career-inspiration.com/by/EvershedsLegalTrainee

·  Deloitte: http://career-inspiration.com/by/deloitte-uk 

·  Pinsent Masons: http://career-inspiration.com/by/pinsentmasons

·  KPMG: http://career-inspiration.com/by/KPMGRecruitment

Ensuring Recruiters Comply to Tax Regulations

Accounting Series - HELP!The British recruitment industry is in the naughty corner. Allegations have surfaced that hundreds of agencies are avoiding tax to the tune of millions of pounds. In fact, £390m a year is coming out of taxpayers’ pockets, and lining the profit margins of recruitment companies.

Through non-compliant expenses schemes for temporary workers, recruitment agencies have been pulling a fast one on HM Revenue & Customs. Millions of temps have been exploited in the process. We’re wondering just who is giving these tax avoidance schemes the go-ahead. Who willingly messes with HMRC? If you play with fire…

How This Works 

We bet you’re wondering how these recruitment agencies are getting away with this. Simply, they block out some of their workers’ weekly wages and mark them as expenses, under a ‘travel and subsistence’ scheme. For these expenses, they can then claim tax relief and bank the cash saved as profit. Their low-paid employee receives nothing from this. Employees may not even be receiving the minimum wage, as a result of this tax avoidance, and HMRC will be losing out on £30 per employer, leading to an estimated £390m in losses to public funds.

In failing to pay the correct tax, recruitment companies are cheating the exchequer, and risking penalties from HMRC. They could even lose their gangmasters licence.

Calls For It To Stop

Approximately 250,000 of the 1.3m temps in the UK have been affected by this scheme. Hundreds of recruiters continue to skirt the law. They pursue this avenue to undercut law-abiding recruitment firms, and now there is growing uncertainty in the industry about what’s right and wrong. Of course, no-one wants to break the law, but it’s difficult to stay competitive when your competitors are gleaning millions of pounds in tax breaks.

The Recruitment and Employment Confederation have called on the HMRC to make the rules crystal clear, in a bid to outlaw tax avoidance. However, the HMRC already believes the rules are plain for everyone to see and that the Government will look severely on anyone who is trying to play the system. HMRC published guidelines in 2011.

But still, tax avoidance in the recruitment sector has been described as ‘rife.’ We won’t be seeing a stop to the usual tax avoidance, until someone makes recruitment agencies stop – time to get a tax fraud solicitor on-side! Lawyers have been bombarded with queries from clients, asking if they also will be able to take part in the tax avoidance schemes that their competitors have been enjoying. It’s important that there’s clear guidance here and that every recruitment agency is treated equally.

In some cases, agencies have been pocketing 88% of the tax relief they receive, when they should only be receiving 30%. One pay package showed a worker had been given 12% of the money, when they should have had 70%.

Criminal Records: What Recruiters Need to look out for

Hands in handcuffs on the tableSometimes, it is the employer that loses out massively. Often, this occurs when an employee is working their notice and steals information or tries to harm the company. This is why it has become increasingly common for employers to monitor and block malicious behaviour with software or products. You can often sort the wheat from the chaff before they enter the office by running a background check on their criminal history.  

Of course, not every youthful indiscretion necessarily reflects on the adult in front of you – likewise, not every criminal has a record. That’s the risk you take. You are entitled to ask about any criminal record your prospective employee might have, but there is a limit to how far you can probe.   

Asking about any prior convictions is an invasion of privacy, unless it’s necessary to the position. For example, you will need to run background checks on anyone who is working with children or vulnerable adults. Be aware that not all convictions stay on someone’s record forever – they will disappear from view after a number of years. If your candidate is applying for a nursing, doctor, barrister, accountant, solicitor, teacher, or care role, you are entitled to see both ‘spent’ and ‘unspent’ convictions.  

How Do You Know That Your Candidate Isn’t Lying?  

You can ask your potential employee if they have any previous convictions you need to be worried about, but to know that they’re telling the truth, you will have to request a formal record of their criminal history. This is called a ‘Basic Disclosure’ and the candidate has to attain it.  

In a situation where the employer is required by law to check even unspent convictions, a Criminals Record Bureau (CRB) check is necessary. This check is made through the employer. You will have to register with the CRB before you can look this deeply into a candidate’s criminal background.   

Your Candidate Doesn’t Have A Clean Record 

You are allowed to reject a candidate based on their criminal record. In fact, it may be required by law for you to do so. Otherwise, it’s advised that you think carefully before you dismiss your candidate; especially if they address their previous conviction in the meeting and convincingly explain how they have changed since then (proactively). Sometimes, a troubled youth or small convictions can add to character-building and important life experience.   

Only ask for a conviction history when you’re at the interviewing stage. You can offer jobs based on the condition that their CRB comes back clean – however, in such situations, asking a criminal law solicitor to help clarify any discrepancies  will be your best choice if there is any uncertainty. In addition, often, the most queried cases recruiters encounter relate to driving offences – so perhaps a direct contact with a specialist motoring solicitor will offer better peace of mind.  

What Happens If You’re Candidate Lies? 

You can dismiss your employee if you find out that they lied about previous unspent convictions, as this is a huge breach of trust. However, this doesn’t quite work the same for spent convictions – that would be unfair. Also, if your employee has been fantastic otherwise, will you really want to chuck them for this indiscretion? 


Wasting recruiters time!

Ed Martin of Pandora

Ed Martin of Pandora

I have just finished watching this short video from Ed Martin of Pandora and came away think boy does he get it!

I am sure like many of you recruiters out there, we have had our time wasted by companies who do not understand the value of their staff or how to retain them or lose quality candidates after the offer.

Mind you could say that is good for us too, if no one left we wouldn’t have much of a job to do!

A good recruiter knows that the job is not done after the offer has been accepted, because all manner of things can go wrong including the counter offer. So we keep in touch during this time with the Candidate and client. Now if the client was like Ed we would not need to worry and could get on with placing someone else. Mind you things can still go wrong, but to know you could contact Ed and say Bob has a few issues you know he would deal with it.

Unfortunately most companies are not like this they think that the candidate is just lucky to have a job. Still I suppose you could say at least this way we earn our keep ;)

Anyway enjoy the video, I like his twist on Twitter

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