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Businesses redesigning jobs

One in three businesses are redesigning job roles, with ‘soft’ skills critical to post-lockdown recovery according to research by international recruitment consultancy, Robert Half UK (

The survey of more than 1,500 executives found 29% of employers were currently redesigning roles in direct response to the impact of the pandemic; while 41% say that ‘soft’ skills will be key to dealing with ongoing COVID-19 uncertainty, and other in-demand skills including digital and technical with a focus on IT and business management will be critical as firms look to ensure agility and resilience moving forward.

The top in-demand ‘soft’ skills include creative thinking (38%) and agility (36%), highlighting the importance of innovative, flexible teams to help businesses recover post-lockdown; while effective communication (35%), strong leadership (33%) and strategic thinking (29%) are also in high demand.

Demand for technology roles, including network architects and developers, has risen as many companies upgrade or expand their IT infrastructure and online revenue capabilities in response to shifting consumer demands and remote working.

In finance and accounting, Robert Half UK is seeing an increased focus on candidates with digital operations and data analytics experience, as well as a rise in demand for credit and cash control roles as businesses seek to automate and streamline their finance functions through cloud based systems.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way many of us do business, both now and in the future,” says Matt Weston, Managing Director, Robert Half UK.

“Remote working has enabled talent pools around the world to open up which, for some companies, means that existing employees with key skills can be redeployed in the short-term to deliver business-critical roles.  For others, however, changing customer demands and new working patterns have meant skills gaps have suddenly appeared – for digital transformation and e-commerce, in particular.”

“As companies within the UK seek to embrace change and build more agile, adaptable workforces, we are seeing many businesses redesigning traditional job roles to meet current day demands,” continues Weston.

“Effective permanent, temporary, and interim hiring strategies can help bridge these gaps by upskilling teams with the required specialist competencies and behaviours needed.  Now is the ideal time to redesign job roles, retrain current employees and consider new combinations of permanent, temporary and project-based staff in order to build a smart, flexible staffing plan to supercharge your post-COVID-19 recovery.” 

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