What did we learn from Bullhorn's Global Recruitment and Insights Data?

Bullhorn’s report looks at 2021’s priorities and predicted challenges for 2022. More than 4,000 global recruitment industry professionals were questioned from a broad range of regions, perspectives and industries. Read on for our key takeaways from the report. 

Top Challenges 

It comes as no surprise that talent shortage was the number one global challenge, with 46% citing it as so. With the job market picking up post-pandemic and the workforce shrinking, recruiters are struggling to fill roles. The personal mental health impact of the pandemic saw a sharp rise in early retirement resulting in a younger and smaller workforce. There’s also the impact of people staying in education longer, with further education becoming more accessible over the past few decades. Gone are the days of school leavers joining the full-time workforce at 16. 

Somewhat surprisingly only 11% said uncertainty over the economy was a fear. Reports suggesting 2007 style recession started at the start of 2020 but, during the summer of 2021 it was reported the economy was bouncing back better than expected. So, are people sticking with the keep calm and carry on attitude that got us through 2020. Or is this naivety? 

Top Priorities 

Coinciding with the talent shortage, 36% cited candidate acquisition as their top priority. Hardly surprising that recruiters will be pulling out all the stops to get the best candidates in their corner. We’ll be seeing tech playing a massive role in solving this problem and bridging that gap between personal connections and automated time-saving techniques. 

Only 21% are focused on winning new clients, for the first time in a decade, this is not a top-three priority. This could be due to the shift away from contingency recruitment. Agencies ask for more money, in turn, to work exclusively with the client. This partnership model means agencies get more revenue whilst also providing a better service.. 


49% predicted that technology investments will increase in 2022. It would appear that after a rollercoaster in 2020, the recruitment industry headed into 2021 cautiously optimistic. Those who had done well the year previous were looking to invest in new tech to continue the trend. For those trying to get back on their feet, tech was an attempt to inject a new lease of life under better circumstances.  

What’s next? 

To conclude, using tech to solve the candidate shortage is on everyone’s mind. 84% of businesses have a digital transformation strategy in place, compared to just 25% in 2019. So if your business doesn't have one, perhaps it should.

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