Estate agencies face the worst staff shortages in a generation, a senior recruitment figure has claimed.
Property Personnel chief Anthony Hesse says the key problem is that there are fewer people applying for jobs within the industry than used to be the case, and that estate agencies must now work harder to retain good staff and persuade fresh talent to consider working in property sales, lettings and management.
Official figures back up his claim. Latest data shows that, while general employment levels have been rising, the number of people employed in estate agencies and property auctioneering has plateaued at between 50,000 and 55,000 people over the past seven years.
Hesse (pictured, left) claims that estate agencies will have to change tack to address the problem.
This must include considering candidates from outside the sector, ensuring existing employees see a clear career path, developing talent, paying people what they are worth and offering a reasonable work/life balance.
“Just because they haven’t been an estate agent before doesn’t mean they don’t have the makings of an excellent one in the future,” he says.
“We 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. If you want to recruit the top people in today’s market, you need to 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.”