Business Travel Talent Trends in the UK

Lynne Griffiths


Hiring rates are slowing

This year we are seeing a slower pace of recruitment, as the business travel industry settles after the frantic pace of recruitment post pandemic. Rebuilding staffing levels and teams was the priority and now that this has been achieved, recruitment priorities are more specific, strategic and business plan led.

However, it is still a candidate market and employees still hold the power to demand more from their employers when it comes to salary, flexibility, and benefits. But this power balance is likely to start levelling out in the coming months.

Volatile candidate market

We have seen an increase in candidates accepting job offers, even signing contracts and then withdrawing, having received a lucrative counteroffer or other new job offer. This is why we are continually highlighting the need for recruitment best practice and “best behaviour”. That means having a planned and structured recruitment process in place; being timely; engaging with the candidate at every stage, even after offer acceptance up to prior to start date; sharing company and job information and values; and ultimately being focussed on achieving a great candidate experience. The recruitment experience speaks volumes to the candidate about your values are and what type of employer you are and will be and they will share this with their friends so giving the best impression is essential to be a travel company employer of choice.

Weathering the economic challenges

As the cost-of-living crisis continues to squeeze everyone’s spending power, employers must take an empathetic approach to help their employees. This can also require an individual approach, which can be team led, to find out which initiatives will be of most help. This can be both financial and in terms of working conditions – e.g. vouchers, childcare incentives, subsidies or more flexible working times – to name but a few.

Trends in what business travel industry candidates value

  1. Flexibility – Flexible work arrangements (i.e. when and where you work)
  2. Compensation – Excellent compensation and benefits
  3. Advancement – Opportunities for career growth within the company
  4. Security – Job security including probationary period terms and conditions        

Employees have always wanted to feel valued and now, more than ever, candidates are looking for corporate travel industry companies that not only value them but which also share common ethics and morals. These values are what drives a business and they help everyone to work together toward a common goal. Sharing company values and inspiring buy in and alignment to those values is not just a hiring strategy – it’s key to ensuring you retain your best talent as well.

Internal mobility increases employee retention

Employees who make an internal move – through either a promotion or lateral change – are more likely to stay at their organisation longer than those who stay in the same role.

Start the progression discussion on Day 1, producing a professional development plan and ensuring that reviews are regular and effective. Again, investment isn’t just financial, here it is about time, structure, authenticity and focus.

Company Culture

Company culture and reputation is inextricably intertwined and a great rule of thumb is “happy employee = happy customer”!

Employees want to feel part of the company and with so many travel industry companies now offering hybrid or home-working opportunities, employee engagement is vital. It is at these social events where working relationships are nurtured and the company culture and reputation are enriched. Use office working days to their fullest –not just to check emails and attend performance meetings – set up idea sessions, training, mentoring …. and something sociable to encourage and allow the team to laugh, learn, engage, socialise and bond.

Sirius Talent Solutions is the only recruitment agency dedicated to the business travel industry. We focus on the full talent lifecycle – recruitment, development, and retention. Our mission is to source the best talent for our clients and then help them nurture and retain that talent.

Our services consist of: recruitment, training solutions, corporate mentoring programmes, coaching, extensive outsourced HR services, outplacement support and employee engagement.

Please get in touch to discuss our talent solutions for your business needs: +44 (0)1932 562007 or [email protected]