Recruiting professional designers: how to get ahead of a competitor?


If the market is narrow, and experienced specialists are hot and expensive, then the cost of error is high. How to keep or attract a good designer in the midst of a crisis? Elona Balatbieva, head of the human resources department at Metropolis, answered RBCs questions and answers.

Recruiting is a type of activity specific to each industry, with its own secrets and rules of the game. One of the most difficult areas is the search for specialists for the construction industry, or rather, its most intelligent area - the design of residential and commercial real estate.


In the minds of young Russian managers who have not gone through so many crises, there are two mistakes regarding the labor market.

Firstly, they believe that in 2020 a large number of excellent candidates will appear on the design market.

However, this is the wrong point of view. And here's why: no one will fire real professionals. This applies even to companies from the most affected sectors. Under the most pessimistic scenario, such specialists will be reduced last of all. After a period of self-isolation and remote work in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Kazan and other large cities, the business plans to survive. And you need to survive with a strong team.

The second mistaken hope of some top managers is that there will be many inexpensive experienced designers and design engineers on the market who are ready to consider salary offers below the market level of early 2020. This is also an illusion. In our segment, more than 70% of the candidates are men under the age of 45 years. Often these are family people, with children and mandatory expenses for renting an apartment or a mortgage. It is not short-sighted to think that in times of crisis good specialists will agree to work for less. On the contrary, the motivation to earn will only grow, and companies that weed out such candidates may be in the illusion that somewhere there are great engineers who dream of working for an idea and food.


According to the data of the two largest recruiting sites - HeadHunter and SuperJob - in April 2020, the number of vacancies published on their platforms in all sectors decreased by 48% and 33%.

The number of published resumes decreased by 26% and 30%. However, the competition of job seekers still increased: one new vacancy in May accounted for 2.89 resumes versus 2.25 in February.

The situation in the construction industry now looks as follows: as of mid-May, more than 25 thousand vacancies were open throughout Russia. Of these, 15% are in Moscow, 7% in St. Petersburg, 4% each in the Moscow region and Krasnodar region, 3% each in the Krasnoyarsk region, Irkutsk and Novosibirsk regions. The minimum number of vacancies recorded in the Republic of Ingushetia and the Nenets Autonomous Okrug.

The field designing civil engineering projects accounts for slightly more than 15% of the total vacancy in the construction industry. The maximum demand for designers is in Moscow, it makes up almost 24% of the total demand throughout Russia. In St. Petersburg, the demand for designers is also high and holds at 11%. In other regions, the picture is significantly different downward, but it can be noted that in the Sverdlovsk region, Krasnodar Territory, Novosibirsk and Chelyabinsk regions, as well as the Republic of Tatarstan, demand varies from 3 to 5%.

Employers and job seekers

Employers have become more demanding of the job experience of potential candidates.

So, 15% of vacancies are ready to consider candidates with more than 6 years of experience. In 52% of cases - with experience from 3 to 6 years, in 28% - with experience from 1 to 3 years. About 5% of job offers fall on vacancies without work experience. For applicants, teamwork skills, as well as knowledge of special products, for example, AutoCAD, Autodesk Revit, ArchiCAD and others, are still important.

If during 2019 there was an increase in salaries in all areas of the construction industry, now salary offers are frozen at the level of January-March 2020.

This is the situation from the point of view of employers. What about job seekers? Passive candidates did not actively seek work, rather the opposite. Many of them lay down waiting for the end of the pandemic and even refuse to conduct remote interviews, since many are afraid of working in a new company on a remote site, and they dont want to go to work in the office and risk their health.

Six months ago, the priorities of the candidates lined up in this order:

1. Interesting tasks or projects;

2. Team;

3. Salary.

Priorities have now transformed. A stable company (more than 10-15 years on the market) and a salary level came first. Actively searching candidates are not ready to spend their time on small business companies.

Employers whose portfolio of orders provides loading for the next year or two continue to monitor the market and make offers to applicants.

Tips for employers

The current situation clearly shows that companies need to quickly adapt to new conditions, learn to build business processes in a new way, including in HR. It is necessary to be flexible and adapt to the current situation. Here are some tips.

- If you find a candidate that you need for business now and in the future, do not waste time in the hope that the candidate will become cheaper.

Great candidates have no expiration date and there will be no markdown. Do not waste time making a decision. Cool candidates are now flying out of the market as quickly as before.

Waiting in the hope of saving only lengthens the hiring process. This is a bad strategy, because in addition to a frozen market, such companies slow down themselves and lose in the fight for relevant candidates.

- Do not be afraid to hire young specialists if the company has the resources to develop them.

Today, more candidates have appeared on the market with little or no experience at all, but with a good specialized education. In our segment, these are recent graduates of MGSU, SPbGASU, KGASU and other leading universities of the country. Now there is an opportunity to attract the best newcomers, and after some time, after corporate training, get an excellent employee.

- Do not be afraid to work with remote employees, set clear goals and objectives for them.

The trend for remote work will continue. Therefore, it is necessary to develop the competencies of employee management and increase the technical capabilities of such work. In addition, the ability to work remotely is today one of the key factors that increase the company's competitiveness in the labor market.

Read the article on theRBC website