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The Independent Automotive Aftermarket Federation

Glen Callum Associates calls for ‘skills-based hiring’ strategies to navigate aftermarket recruitment challenges

Date: Friday 21 June 2024

Glen Callum Associates, a leading automotive aftermarket recruitment agency, is addressing the ongoing talent shortages in the sector by providing practical advice and innovative solutions, sharing insights on how businesses can overcome recruitment challenges and thrive in today's competitive landscape by adopting a ‘skills-based hiring’ strategy.

The current recruitment market presents significant challenges, with the UK unemployment rate at 4.4 percent and an estimated 904,000 vacancies between March and May 2024, which is 12 percent above pre-COVID levels[1].

Additionally, 93 percent of hiring managers express concern about continued talent shortages[2].

Glen Callum Associates advises that an effective solution to these talent shortages is adopting a skills-based approach to hiring. This method prioritises a candidate’s skills, adaptability and potential over traditional job titles or industry experience.

Skills-based hiring evaluates candidates through practical tasks and scenario-based questions, focusing on both hard skills, such as data analysis, and soft skills, like communication and leadership.

The approach has been implemented by 40 percent of UK recruiters and has led 43 percent of businesses to shift their job adverts to focus on skills and competencies rather than qualifications. What’s more, 20 percent of businesses have removed degree requirements from job adverts[3].

In today's competitive landscape, the top skills that stand out to SMEs include a good work ethic, with 38 percent of businesses valuing this trait highly. Following closely, 37 percent prioritise team players, while 31 percent value quick learners. Confidence is key for 27 percent of SMEs, and the ability to work under pressure is crucial for another 26 percent. Additionally, 26 percent of businesses look for candidates who are a good personality fit for their company.[4]

Kayleigh Bradley, Senior Recruiter at Glen Callum Associates, said: “Skills-based hiring offers numerous advantages. It reduces the time to hire by streamlining the recruitment process and decreases hiring costs by lowering expenses associated with lengthy recruitment phases. This approach also improves diversity, attracting a broader range of candidates from diverse backgrounds. It enhances talent attraction by drawing in candidates who are genuinely interested and engaged.”

Importantly, companies with solid skills-based hiring practices see a 17 percent increase in employee retention and a 23 percent increase in productivity, according to a 2023 study by Deloitte.[5]

To implement a skills-based approach, businesses should consider removing degree requirements from job adverts to attract a wider pool of candidates, advises Glen Callum Associates.

Updating job descriptions to emphasise the skills required for the job and providing a clear list of responsibilities, rather than an exhaustive list of previous experiences and qualifications, is also crucial, the specialist urges.

Additionally, using skills-based assessments, such as online tests or scenario-based questions during the interview process, can be highly effective. While this approach may not be applicable to all positions, it is an efficient way of recruiting for many roles.

Bradley added: “At Glen Callum Associates, we understand the importance of broadening the talent pool by recognising transferable skills from allied industries. This not only addresses the skills gap but also brings fresh perspectives and innovative approaches to our sector. By adopting a skills-based approach, businesses can attract passionate and capable individuals, contributing towards a more diverse and dynamic workforce.”

For more information on how Glen Callum Associates can help businesses navigate the recruitment landscape, please contact Glen Callum Associates at or visit the website.




[3] Hiring Trends Index: a look at the recruitment landscape of Q1 2024 | Totaljobs