Summer is here and while in the south of Europe, we are melting, we prepare ourselves for our yearly hibernation, or in this case, “summernation.” Everything seems to stop. Nobody picks up the phone or responds to messages. Hiring managers become mojito managers. September looks like a distant rain cloud!
It is true that we have seen a tendency in the last few years of more activity in general and recruitment, in particular, during summer weeks. Historically, at least in Spain, August was a month off, and nobody was working, not in the offices anyway. But more and more, we are adapting to modern times, and it is not strange anymore to take a week off here and there, and some of them may not even be in summer. It is common too to have a small team covering holidays so that there is always someone ready to help if necessary.
In our case, we have many international clients with operations in Spain & Portugal, so they are not used to “summernation” and expect to recruit people in August too 🤣. On the other hand, the job market is more and more internationalized, so while it is strange for a Spaniard not to have holidays in August, it is not for a Dane or an Argentinean, just to name two.
Something that amazes our international clients too when they arrive is the existence of the “Summer Schedule.” Generally, in Spain, companies have a shortened schedule during the summer and end operations at 2 or 3 pm. This is not because we are especially lazy 😉 but because of the hot temperatures we have to endure down here, so having an extended afternoon off will help to hide from it, maybe going to the beach or pool to refresh a bit.
Normally, the workload is declining too, so it is a good time to reward employees with some extra time off and/or take advantage of doing some training courses, offsites/team buildings, etc.
Tied to this concept, there’s a similar one all year long: Friday afternoons off. Again, ending at 3 pm on Fridays is not uncommon in Spain, quite the contrary. Many corporations offer this to their employees, so they work a bit extra from Monday to Thursday to enjoy a Friday early exit that will extend the weekend and allow them to do more with their spare time.
Those two concepts are critical in IT Talent Acquisition. Some people will reject an offer just for that reason alone. Trust us, it has happened to us before.
We know this may sound shocking at first, especially when you have operations with clients in other markets, such as the UK, where they not only finish at 5 pm Monday to Friday but they also follow GMT and not CET.
But if you really want to compete in the crowded IT talent market, it is something that you have to offer, period.
Data shows that recruitment processes start declining around June. We can corroborate that. There is less response from candidates overall. But we have seen that the ones in the market are really motivated. With fewer people fishing in the pool, there is plenty of talent for everybody, even if many fishes are “summernating.”
We are well aware that after the calm comes the storm. September is unfortunately not that far away, and the last week of August, teams will slowly but surely be coming back. Maybe there’ll be a lack of hands. Maybe some people left to start a new year somewhere else. Maybe new business plans require more workforce.
Don’t leave until tomorrow what you can do today. Before the “ohmygods” and the “whatdoidonows” come. You are going to need talent, and you know it (Julio Iglesias-like).
Many candidates are open to go through the processes now and start after the annual leave. As a company, it is a very good way to establish a healthy relationship from the beginning. On the other hand, most companies we know of have no problem whatsoever respecting the holidays candidates already have, as they know bookings and stuff should be done beforehand but knowing that they have signed the person they need in advance is a great peace of mind.
How can NBS help you with summer hiring?
As we have stated many times, we are not here to reinvent anything. In summertime, we are going to get less response from potential candidates. But it is true that many of our prospects come from our network, and we have regular communication with them. So, we may know if they are open, at least, to hearing about new opportunities. This is very helpful because starting the conversation is often the most difficult step for us recruiters.
Summer is coming. Beware of the tan walkers. Become King in the South.
Have a nice one, and see you on the other side, hopefully. Cheers! 🍹