An update on talent and recruitment within the Leasehold sector

There is no doubt that 2022 has seen several changes in hiring within the Leasehold sector, ranging from flexible working to candidate demands. With this in mind we asked Will Kirby, Principal Consultant in Leasehold Management at deverellsmith some questions on the transformations he has been seeing, along with how this has altered the way we attract top talent.

With the undoubtable increase in flexible working, how has this altered the way you attract top talent?

Flexible working has truly made its mark in the modern workspace, and it’s not leaving any time soon. In terms of head office staff, I haven’t spoken to a single candidate in the last year that does not want the opportunity to work flexibly within their role.


The pandemic proved to both employers and employees that we can work at the same standards at home, showing companies aren’t putting themselves or their employees at a disadvantage if they are letting their employees work remotely.

In fact, there are multiple advantages of offering flexible working, such as saving employees both time and money on a commute, meaning they can be more productive with their time. Additionally, it offers a healthier work life balance, meaning employees overall happiness will benefit and working will become a more positive experience.

Those with a flexible working policy in place will be able to attract top talent faster and more efficiently, as this is what most candidates are looking for within their next role. Those who don’t offer this are at a huge disadvantage as I have witnessed, candidates can 100% find it elsewhere.

Have you noticed a change in what candidates are looking for within a role in the past year?

I have certainly seen a shift in what candidates are prioritising in a role in the past year.

Some reoccurring themes I’ve noticed are:

- Clear career progression: Candidates want to know how they can progress in the business. They are no longer satisfied with simply getting promoted due to a senior member of the team leaving, they want to see a distinct progression plan in place. Some great advice is to have frequent conversations with your staff, to ask them specifically how they would like to progress and tailor their progression plan personally to them.

- Flexible working: As mentioned above, flexible working is here to say, and almost every candidate is now looking for flexible working opportunities within their roles.

- Moving away from large portfolios: I have realised that the most common reason for Property Managers leaving their job and in a lot of cases, the industry, is down to workload brought on by oversized portfolios. This has meant that more candidates are looking for a smaller number of units and buildings.

What 3 top tips would you give your clients to retain their top employees?

1. Make the time to talk: Ask your employees two questions; what are you happy about? and what are you unhappy about? This will already put you in a better position to retain your staff

and achieve a lower attrition rate. Being aware of these answers will help you meet their needsand strengthen your working relationships and the business as a whole.

2. Review property managers workload: As mentioned before, the biggest reason for Property Managers leaving a role is down to a hefty workload. I would encourage employers to have

monthly sit downs with PM’s and just ask the question, “What are you not enjoying about your job?”. This will help you understand the changes that need to be made to increase their overall happiness and ensure they are not being overwhelmed.

3. Implement training and development programmes: Across London and the Home Counties, average salaries have increased dramatically. This is due to hiring from competitors, as candidates won’t move for the same or lower salaries, meaning average salaries are increasing. My advice to help control wage inflation is to start hiring at entry level and implement training programme’s offering a platform for Property Managers to succeed. This will also allow you to position yourself as a company that can set new starters up to succeed as opposed to the sink or swim mentality.

Overall, candidate demands are constantly changing, and what they are looking for in a role will most likely, never stay the same. Making sure as an employer you are keeping in touch with what candidates and current employees want, will ensure you are attracting and retaining the best talent for your business.

If you would like more information about the best ways to attract and retain the best talent in the market, you can head to our website or get in touch with Will Kirby to discuss in more detail.


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