Women in Office

Recruiters Guide to Furlough

Apr 21, 2020

What does furlough mean?

The term ‘furloughed worker’ is someone who remains employed but, are not undertaking work. The idea is that this is a temporary arrangement, so that workers will be able to return to their jobs once deemed safe.

The government’s most crucial goal was to avoid mass redundancies across the UK and instead encourage companies to put jobs on hold during the disruption. Therefore, they came up with the ‘Coronavirus Job Retention scheme’, otherwise known as furlough leave. This means that all UK employers, regardless of size, can claim a grant from HMRC to cover
80% of employee wages (up to £2,500 per month) who will not be working, but still kept on Payroll. It is back dated to the 1st March 2020 and is for 3 months, with the intent of extension if necessary.

To qualify for the scheme employees cannot continue to work for the employer.  As a result, you may have your access to work accounts and devices revoked. This is to prevent well-meaning employees from doing anything that could be classified as working.

See this as a opportunity

First – you’re fortunate enough to have future job security with your current employer, however, with much more unexpected free time – what now?

This is a great way to really utilize this time to finding ways to undertake some form of personal development. It is a great opportunity to study or attain some qualifications online – this can be recreational or professional. After doing a little bit of research, you will realise how many courses there are online to choose from – allowing you to build on an expertise and knowledge you already have. Or, try something new.

And so, whilst life in furlough may currently seem daunting, you can absolutely utilise this time effectively, invest in yourself and help to advance your individual long-term personal and career goals – all from the comfort of your own home!

Training platforms

Future Learn: A great platform is ‘Future Learn’, they provide you with high quality learning wherever you are, with online courses, programs and degrees created by leading universities, business schools and specialist organizations. Whether you want to develop as a professional or discover a new hobby, there is an online course for all.

Routine – lockdown living

The first thing you need to do is get into a routine – which requires discipline. Do the same things, in the same order every day. Creating your own rhythm for the day, you’ll find that the day is more sustainable, bearable and enjoyable. A great way to start your day is with some exercise, whether that be a walk or jog. It releases great endorphins that will carry you throughout the day. In the day time, you could do some learning either in something your already specialize in or learning something new. Keep busy, don’t slouch around. Get up in the morning, get dressed, have a plan. With the world of the internet, you can be doing so many activities to fill your day. Additionally, make the weekends different – you have to differentiate your time.

Make sure you are drawing the distinction between boredom and lethargy – boredom is when there is nothing to do, whereas lethargy is when there is things to do, but you can’t be bothered. Most people suffer with the latter… but they call it the former because it gets them off the hook.

Mental well-being

The threat of a virus is scary for us all, as well as people facing stressful life challenges. Lots of people have lost their jobs or have had their incomes cut. Social distancing and isolating means we cannot see our friends and family and many people are worried about their loved ones. This is of course, having an effect on everyone’s well-being. Here are a few ways to help with this:

First of all, positivity is key! Do not begin the day by rehearsing all that is out of your control. Instead, begin by remembering you’re alive and there are good things still. Taking each day at a time, and not over-whelming yourself. Begin with gratitude at the start of every day, and say out loud the things you are grateful for in your life.

Practise self-care – it is very easy to slip into bad habits such as sleeping late, spending all day in your pyjamas and eating junk food. But, looking after yourself is essential for your mental health. Exercising, is known for significantly boosting your mental health – you can do this at home or under government regulations you are allowed to go outside to exercise once a day.  

One app that we highly recommend is the Calm App. It is free and has many programs that can help you with anything from sleeping to eating healthier. It has great meditation sessions and it so easy to use!

One of the most important points is being kind to yourself. If you don’t feel up to doing anything – that is fine too. It is important to recognise when you need a break. Relaxing and focusing on positive things, knowing that every effort is being made globally to bring this situation to a close, but it will take time.

A review of your performance at work

Here are five questions to help you define your career goals:

  1. Would I consider myself a leader of a follower?
  2. Am I delivering at work?
  3. Are the people around me helping me to move up in my career?
  4. Am I achieving a strong work-life balance?
  5. Do I love what I do?

Career development goals are important because it helps you to become more evaluative of your performance at work and how you can enhance it. Do you have areas of weakness you can improve on? If you can do a self-evaluation on this it can increase your billing at work as well as your all rounded performance.

How to organise Zoom calls and chat with other furloughed team mates

Whilst in isolation, it is paramount that you try and keep as social as you can. So why not host a video chat with other furloughed team mates? Zoom is a great platform to enable you to do this, here is some simple steps to host a group video chat.

  1. Download the Zoom App
  2. Open your Zoom app on your desktop and click sign in.
  3. Log in using the email and password that you have created, or Google (Gmail), Facebook, or login with SSO.
  4. Click the downward arrow and select start with video, then click new meeting to start an instant meeting.

Must Reads

As a recruitment consultant, you need to stay on top of the latest recruitment trends and practises. Whether that involves, preparing for recruiting millennials or changing talent acquisition and assessment practises to suit the most savvy candidates, the recruitment process is dynamic and in need of continuous learning.

We have put together some of the must-read recruitment books. Some of them are working on the mindset of recruiting, whilst others focus on the skills and art of recruiting. Whilst being on furlough, this is a great time to read a few books that can help you develop your skills as a recruiter for when you get back to work.

The Savage Truth – the controversial recruiter Greg Savage tells his story on his stellar career in recruitment and the lessons he learned in: leadership, business and life, over four decades.

Mindset – A book by Dweck, PH. D., discovered a ground-breaking idea of the power of the mindset. She shows how success in school, work, sports, the arts and almost every area of human endeavour can be dramatically influenced by how we think about our talents and abilities.

On Recruitment – by Mitch Sullivan. The book is a collection of some of the 150 blogs he’s written on recruitment covering areas of the industry such as culture, retained recruitment, assessment, employer branding, job advertising, candidate experience and even employee engagement.

Grit – This book is a MUST read for anyone striving to succeed. Psychologist Angela Duckworth shows parents, educators, students and business people both seasoned and new that the secret to outstanding achievement is not talent but a focused persistence called grit.

Give yourself some goals to hit

 Setting personal goals for yourself (even if you do not reach them) can enrich your life in a number of ways.

Firstly, it provides direction and destination – they give you something to aim for and direct your efforts to. They help guide you to a place where you ultimately want to be in life. It’s a great way to, instead of wonder through life, you can determine where you want to go.

Your goals give you a clear focus on what you believe is important in life. This means that when you set them, you need to really think about what is important to you personally and what you want to accomplish in life. This will focus your attention and truly reflect your hopes and dreams. If you do not set well thought out goals, you will find yourself spending time doing things that are not important to you.

By setting out these goals, this definitive perspective will help in your decision making process. If you know where you want to go – it will encourage you to make better decisions on how you want to proceed, as you have a clear picture as to what you want to accomplish.

Lastly, setting goals helps you take control of your future. Without goals in life, you will find that people drift aimlessly. If you do not have a plan for where your life is headed, you will just go with the flow. However, by having goals you have more control over where you are headed and what you have to do to get there.

Eat healthily, links to easy recipes

Good nutrition is crucial for health, particularly in times like these. You want your immune system to be as strong as possible. Here are some links to for quick healthy recipes that you can enjoy at home.

BBC Good Food

81 Healthy Dinners

Jamie Oliver Recipes


Home workouts

Just because you are in isolation does not mean you can slack on exercise. If anything, this is a great opportunity to build upon your fitness. Exercise is also great for your mental well-being. We have picked out some of the best influencers that strive to inspire and motivate others do up their fitness in the comfort of their homes. Let’s take a look at a few.

  1. The Body Coach – Joe Wicks

Joe Wicks is all about healthy eating and exercising regularly to get into top shape. He is famous for his ‘Lean in 15’ workouts and cookbooks, which are quick and easy to follow and get you great results.

  • Kayla Itsines

Kayla is a personal trainer from Australia and a significant fitness influencer. She has a great app that you can download, where she shows you everything from 3 meals a day with recipes to workouts suited to your environment. She has a free 7 day trail starting now!

Volunteer for the NHS

Many NHS organisations and charities need you help in fighting the coronavirus. There are volunteer centres across the country, and many NHS trusts have volunteer managers you can contacts if you want to find out about volunteer opportunities.

For more information about volunteering in general and to find local opportunities you can visit or contact your local volunteer centre, or search via  https://do-it.org/. Alternatively, you can visit the NCVO (National Council for Voluntary organisations) web page ‘I want to volunteer’ for everything you need to know to get started or you can also search for

volunteering opportunities in your local area on the Volunteering Matters web pages.

List of TED talks and podcasts

The Secret To Becoming Mentally Strong

How To Stop Your Thoughts From Controlling Your Life

Recruiting Brainfood Podcast

The Social Recruiting Show

Recruitment On The Go  

The Recruitment Roller Coaster Podcast

Linkedinformed Podcast

Recruiting Future  

The Rag Podcast

TRN World

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