Brexit: What Now for the Communications Industry?

15 July 2016

The recent result of the EU referendum and subsequent political upheaval has undoubtedly left the UK reeling. Even though the result was a conclusive 52% leave versus 48% remain, concerns have been raised as to the impact this momentous decision will have on the British economy. Nowhere is this truer than in London, where 60% of people voted to remain.

But how has Brexit impacted a company’s decision to make new hires, and how can companies safeguard against any negative attitudes that might develop?

From a recruitment consultancy’s point of view, JFL have witnessed a typically British ‘Keep Calm and Carry On’ attitude from many of our clients and candidates. There is a resilience in the communications marketplace which has seen clients calling us up simply to tell us that they are planning to do business as usual, and that Brexit has in no way affected their plans for growth. Candidates are similarly stoic in the face of the economic uncertainty that everyone has witnessed since the result – they are all determined to carry on with their job hunt, and none have paused their search.

We have witnessed this strength and buoyancy across all sectors of the communications industry, and at all levels. Three of our current clients have temporarily paused recruitment in order to see how the land lies in a few months’ time, but that equates to less than 5% of our live positions. This is a very encouraging and positive sign given the possible turmoil that could have ensued.

Brexit and the recent appointment of Teresa May has actually stimulated one area of growth – JFL have had an influx of clients asking for candidates with strong Tory credentials. Companies are looking to bolster their Tory offering, and are actively pursuing these candidates. Similarly clients are on the hunt for Labour candidates who can bring new government networks and knowledge to their teams. 

JFL and our clients firmly believe that there is now, more than ever, a need for effective corporate communications and employee engagement. Businesses in the UK, and particularly in London, need to work hard to create opportunities which will outweigh what we are going to lose to Europe, for example financial service companies moving their headquarters to cities outside of the UK. The priority must be to communicate with and reassure employees that business priorities have not changed, but that there is merely a need to be more flexible and even bring in new staff to ensure that all employees are connected and on board with a company’s strategy for the future.

This is certainly an extremely interesting and crucial time for the UK, but the communications industry is rallying, standing firm and carrying on. If you have any concerns about the effect Brexit will have on your plans for recruitment or your job hunt, give us a call – we’d be happy to talk to you. Similarly, if you are now looking to hire or are actively seeking a new role, let us know by giving us a ring on 020 7009 3500 or dropping us an email – info@jflrecruit.com.

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