Recruitment lessons from Love Island

The reality television show, which returned for a third series on ITV in June and July, features singles competing to ‘couple up’ for a £50,000 prize. Attracting an audience of two million viewers per show, the popular programme has become a guilty pleasure for many professionals.

But what can recruiters learn from the world of fake tans, infinity pools and bikinis?

Recruitment Grapevine takes a fun look at the comparisons between Love Island and Recruitment.

  1. Reputation is not enough

As a newly created national hero, Marcel Somerville has proved that an illustrious past is not enough to maintain a high rate of candidate applications.

Marcel was a member of the hip-hop group Blazin’ Squad, famed for their 2002 number one single ‘Crossroads’. This brought him initial kudos on the show but he was voted as the public’s favourite male contestant due to his respectful approach to other islanders and his good advice which led him to be nicknamed ‘Dr Marcel’.

Recruiters cannot rely on a well-regarded reputation but must also prove to candidates that they would be great employers with respectful, thorough and interesting application processes. If candidates respect their employers, they are more likely to form strong and lasting relationships (as with Marcel and his girlfriend Gabby, who he met in the villa) which will ensure a higher retention rate.

  1. Don’t put all of your eggs in one basket

This much-repeated phrase has become something of a catchphrase on the Island. In context, it refers to the contestants not getting too heavily involved with their potential partners in case someone else they prefer comes along. Many islanders do not want to settle with someone when the love of their life could enter the villa at any point.

It may be tempting to focus on one particular talent pool or to recruit the first candidates that you see. However, by waiting, and seeing all candidates, recruiters may find an unexpected gem. In the case of Love Island, Camilla initially played it safe and dated Jonny, who broke her heart. Then, by opening herself up again, she coupled with her dream man. If recruiters let past negative recruitment put them off and stop them from pursuing new employees, they may miss potential talent.

  1. Challenge preconceptions

‘You’re 100% my type on paper,’ is perhaps the most used phrase on the Island. For example, when ‘Muggy’ Mike arrived at the villa, he was Olivia’s ‘type on paper’, but she chose to stay coupled with her partner, Chris, despite him being unlike her usual boyfriends.

In the world of recruitment, employers may have certain ideas of their “type” of candidate – with certain preferences for education or employment history. However, whilst these candidates may suit them better ‘on paper’, workplace compatibility does not always follow these rules. Considering atypical candidates may create a stronger dynamic going forward for recruiters who choose unrepresented talent.

See the full article here;

Recruitment Grapevine is the leading publisher for the talent acquisition industry. Executive Grapevine is the European leader in business publishing, information services, marketing solutions and events for the talent management sector.


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