Estate agencies are currently facing “the worst staff shortage in a generation”, according to recruitment expert Anthony Hesse.
Hesse, who is managing director of estate agency recruitment consultancy Property Personnel, said that finding new personnel in the industry was “challenging” as not as many candidates are applying for jobs in the sector.
He said that the industry “desperately needs to find a way not only to retain the talent we have, but also to bring staff into the profession who have never even considered estate agency before”.
Hesse suggests that recruiters should be more “open minded” about recruiting trainees from outside the industry, and not “exclude those with excellent potential and transferable skills from other professions”.
He also emphasised the importance of paying workers good salaries, and providing a good work/life balance, warning that bad working conditions will “make it harder to retain your top talent”.
He said: “To secure their interest, you should outline how you will help recruits develop and realise their potential. This makes sound commercial sense too – as the saying goes, ‘If you want to grow your business, you need to grow your people’.
“We also need to remember that good candidates will come away from their interviews with three or four job offers. In days gone by, potential employees seemed to be most persuaded by the type of company car on offer. That no longer seems to be so important any more.”
He added: “So if you want to recruit the top people in today’s market, you need to provide them with the support, development, salary and work/life balance that will persuade them that yours is the sort of estate agency they not only want to work for, but also to remain in for some time to come.”