“Eighteen months ago I had an idea to help recruiters and employers to find industry specific, available candidates,” says Robert Kenward (pictured), founder of newly launched recruitment platform TheHub.Jobs.
This year it did not take long before Kenward’s idea accelerated and soon materialised following the impact of Covid-19 on the events job market.
The centralised CV hub or ‘people hub’ as he calls it, is an area for jobseekers to upload their CV free of charge which uses a parsing software and is confidential and secure.
Also using a “revolutionary” cloud-based Software as a Service (SaaS), the site aims to make job hunting easier within the event, MICE and experiential industries, as well as ensuring employers know there is a pre-vetted set of applicants. A monthly ‘Pulse’ check refreshes the talent pool and only shortlists candidates still looking for work.
“It’s about the user experience and how the three users [job seeker, employer, recruiter] would integrate with the platform,” Kenward said. “There’s lots of job boards out there that are clunky, depend a lot on paper and not very secure. Whereas a SaaS platform is working for you 24/7 and it’s not time dependent.”
As we look towards 2021 and the much-anticipated return of live events, Kenward said exhibition organisers need a broader range of skills, which also suit the needs of virtual and hybrid events.
This includes an understanding of online data within events: “It’s now about how to look at online data in order to streamline that experience, otherwise no one is going to show,” he said.
A stronger focus on audience participation also is key in the exhibition world going forward according to Kenward, as well as “understanding planning skills, the technical side and almost moving over to producer territory.”
“We have seen that virtual doesn’t really suit the exhibition side. Hybrid will, but that has to be much more production led.
“If exhibitors are going to do a hybrid event, they almost need to take that physical event and scrap it.
“To do that you’ve got to be a content creator, a creative, a planner, and a producer. They’re all morphing the skills that people have at the moment.”
The return of live events will also mean a large number of roles need filling next year. Kenward is remaining realistic about the return of live events but suggested exhibiters also need to be realistic when recruiting talent.
“Next year we need to get back on our knees, and then the year after we can get back to our feet,” he said.
“You might not need the volume of people next year, but you’re going to need people that can do more than one skill.
“People aren’t going to have three years online event experience. Organisers need to stop focusing on how many years of experience someone has, and instead focus on what they can do.”