Recruiting in the United Kingdom

 Emmanuel Bisi Emmanuel Bisi
June 21, 2024
Published on 

In an increasingly interconnected world, international recruitment has become a crucial element for companies seeking to enrich their talent pool and expand their global presence. However, recruiting in the United Kingdom presents its own challenges. Between British cultural nuances, post-Brexit regulations, and fierce competition for top talent, recruiters must navigate a complex and often unpredictable environment.
So, how can you overcome these obstacles and successfully recruit in the UK? At Expandys, our London-based team possesses deep expertise in the British market and is ready to guide you through this demanding process.



Recruiting in the UK Job Market:

Recruiting in the UK job market involves navigating through a set of strict standards and legal regulations aimed at protecting workers' rights and ensuring professional fairness. Understanding these nuances is essential for companies looking to thrive in this competitive environment.

  • National Minimum Wage: In the UK, all workers are entitled to a national minimum wage, which varies according to age and employment status. This amount is set by the government and adjusted annually by the Low Pay Commission.

  • Flexible Working Hours: British legislation imposes a maximum working limit of 48 hours per week, averaged over a 17-week period. This allows for some flexibility: workers can exceed these 48 hours in certain weeks, provided they compensate with reduced hours in other weeks to maintain the average over the period. It is also possible to sign a voluntary agreement with the employer to exceed this limit, known as an "opt-out agreement." Workers can revoke this decision at any time by giving adequate notice to their employer.

  • Holidays and Annual Leave: Workers are entitled to a legal minimum of 5.6 weeks of paid leave per year, in addition to 8 national public holidays. Leave policies vary depending on the workplace: some allow employees to take time off on public holidays, while others require that public holidays be taken as part of the paid leave. It is advisable to check your employment contract or consult the staff handbook to understand your specific rights.

  • Sick Leave: In case of illness, the employer is not obliged to pay for the first three days of absence unless the employment contract is more favorable. From the fourth day of absence, the employer starts paying statutory sick pay, an obligation that lasts up to 28 weeks. For the first eight days of absence, a medical certificate is not usually required, but after this period, the employer may request one, with the risk of dismissal if the employee fails to provide it.

Specifics of recruiting in the United Kingdom:

Recruitment in the UK is influenced by a dynamic and diverse job market, necessitating tailored human resource management strategies. It is crucial to consider these specifics to succeed in the recruitment process.

  • Speed of Recruitment: In the UK, speed is often considered a virtue in recruitment. Unlike in France, where the process can stretch over several months, it is not uncommon for a candidate to receive a call soon after submitting their CV, quickly leading to an interview scheduled within days. This responsiveness is crucial for attracting and retaining top talent. While the recruitment cycle can seem interminable in other countries, in the UK, it is common for the entire process, from initial contact to final offer, to be completed within a month. This efficiency allows British companies to quickly adapt to market needs and secure the most promising candidates before their competitors.

  • Learning and Development: Continuous learning and professional development are encouraged in the UK job market. Companies that offer training and professional development opportunities tend to attract and retain top talent.

  • Hybrid Working Models: In the UK, employers are widely encouraged to integrate hybrid working roles into their workforce. These hybrid roles allow employees to combine remote work with office days, offering a better work-life balance. Companies that adopt this approach can attract a wider range of talents.

  • Benefits and Well-being: Social benefits, such as pension schemes, paid leave, and sick leave, are important elements for attracting qualified candidates. Companies that invest in their employees' well-being often see improved retention and productivity.


How Expandys can help you recruit in the United Kingdom:

At Expandys, we understand the unique challenges of the UK job market and are committed to providing recruitment solutions tailored to your needs. Here’s how we can help you succeed in this competitive market:

  • Ideal Candidate Profile: We offer personalized advice to define the ideal candidate profile, considering the local market specifics. Our recruitment experts work closely with you to understand your needs and objectives, targeting the essential skills and qualities for your business.

  • Candidate Selection: We conduct thorough interviews for each candidate, using rigorous selection techniques to establish a shortlist of qualified candidates. Each candidate is evaluated not only on their technical skills but also on their ability to integrate into your company culture and meet your strategic goals.

  • Comprehensive Support During Final Interviews: Our support does not stop at pre-selection. We assist you throughout the final interviews, providing practical advice on hiring procedures and employment contracts. We ensure that each step of the process complies with local standards, guaranteeing a smooth transition for the candidate and your business.

  • Preparation of Employment Contracts: We take care of the meticulous drafting of employment contracts, ensuring their legal compliance and adaptation to regional specifics. With our local legal expertise, you can focus on your core activities with peace of mind, knowing that all contractual aspects are handled.

  • Local Accommodation for V.I.E or Employees: To facilitate the professional integration of your employees or international company volunteers (V.I.E), we offer accommodation within our local structure. This service aims to provide a warm welcome and quick adaptation to local life, enhancing their productivity from day one.

  • Comprehensive Post-Recruitment HR Management: Our service does not stop at recruitment. We also manage all post-recruitment HR aspects, including contract management, payroll, social benefits, and continuous professional development. We ensure regular follow-up to guarantee that your new employees are well integrated and thriving in their roles.


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