How will election fever affect your business?


OK, I’ll admit it.  I am a LIB DEM.  Calm down please, and stop tittering at the back.  It’s a perfectly normal and reasonable thing for a full grown adult to do, and I won’t stand for any nonsense from you lot about it.

Even bigger than the looming World Cup in South Africa, the impending General Election, probably on 6th May, will be lighting up the newswires and Twitterfeeds for the next 3 months at least.  I personally think that the narrow spectrum of policies represent by the three main parties means that there is unlikely to be much change in the legislative landscape, whichever way it goes.  Labour are no longer socialist, the Tories are no longer hard-line, and the Lib Dems remain slightly to the left of both.  One scenario could see the Conservatives elected, the Scottish Nationalists gaining seats north of the border, and the foundations for independence being laid.  Scots will then be more likely to vote for separation in a referendum, and England would be blue again for a generation.

This is only conjecture, of course, but it is this speculation which will affect the recruiting landscape in a serious way.  At a time when the recovery we are all willing on, remains fragile, certainty and stability are the Baby Bio nourishment the market needs above any possible policy change.  Last year, we saw recruitment firms across the country downsizing, or rightsizing, to match the market that was available to them.  In the first 2 months of 2010, we have seen these firms representing employers who are themselves determined to defy the markets, and lead their way out of recessions.  This is then a precarious predicament which could shortly be met with the limbo that typically accompanies all elections.

As the news reports become more filled with posturing politicians, there is a definite mood amongst business leaders to wish it would all be over with quickly.  For these reasons, I believe the possibility of a hung parliament will be filling recruiters with dread, as it will inevitably prolong the state of stasis during election itself.  Recruiters are a pragmatic lot, and just want to get on with what they do best.  For my part, I just hope it’s all died down before Wimbledon starts.

How will the election affect you, and what are your plans to minimise the disruption?

Stephen O'Donnell is a lifelong recruiter, internet enthusiast, fadgadget and peripatetic writer.

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