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a blog by Chris Barrow

Knock your business down and start again - because you can

"The latest jobs data made for incredible reading. The unemployment rate fell to 4.1%. The number unemployed fell to 1,382,000. The number of vacancies in the economy increased to 1,247,000. There were 32.5 million in employment, compared to 32.2 in November 2020.

Whole economy earnings eased to 4.2% from 4.9% in prior months. Real earnings adjusted for inflation CPI were negative -0.9%. We expect earnings to slow further to 3.5% towards the end of year. Assuming our projections for inflation are correct, the cost of living pressures will ease into the second half of the year.

Over half of the vacancies in the economy are in health and social, retail, accommodation and food. The correlation between vacancies and unemployment by sector is significant. The anomaly is in health and social. There are over 200,000 vacancies in the sector with a relatively smaller number out of work compared to the overall sector average. "

The Saturday Economist

Why are there more vacancies in the health and social sector than any other part of the UK economy, even though most of those working in the sector are engaged?

  • Mandatory vaccination;;

  • Low pay;

  • Challenging working conditions;

  • Lack of appreciation.

There's little we can do about the vaccination issue, other than to wait and see if the current pressure for a delay and/or u-turn results in any change.

As for the other three factors - in dentistry we can change the narrative on that today.

  • Fair and competitive pay (and benefits);

  • Flexible working conditions with room to breathe;

  • Genuine appreciation for true effort.

If you are not prepared to enter into that new dialogue, there's a good chance that some existing team members will move on and your recruitment advertising will be ignored.

It was fascinating last night, to share with my clients the story of one of their peers who is opening a private squat in early April.

He is enjoying great success in attracting team members (both clinical and support) as a result of the focused targeting and headhunting of ideal team players and the creation of a benefits package that beats the competition (oh - and by the way - an environment that rewards and appreciates both team and patients).

All of that, by the way, in a new business that intends to be open 7 days a week from day one and has already pre-registered hundreds (yes - hundreds) of potential new patients for their in-house dental plan.

You can turnaround the recruitment and retention crisis and have new patients forming a queue - if you are prepared for some creative destruction of your existing pay structure, employment terms, business model and corporate culture.

There's no time like the present for reinventing your business.

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