What you need to know about the jobs market in 2024

What will increase your chances of landing a job in 2024? A month into the new year, Ed Pritchard from Anderson Quigley gives some expert advice.



A month into 2024, and the job market remains a tough place if you’re considering a new career or role. Following the post-COVID hiring spree we’re continuing to see the fallout from the 2023 lay-off season initiated by big tech companies. The febrile competition for jobs continues, with most roles attracting lots of qualified candidates.

For anyone looking for a new opportunity this year, understanding what recruiters are searching for is going to be essential for a successful application.

One notable shift in recruitment strategies is the increasing reliance on, you guessed it, Artificial Intelligence (AI). AI tools, such as for pre-screening candidates, will only become more prevalent. Whilst some have raised their concerns about the use of AI, when used thoughtfully, AI can enhance equal opportunities by recommending candidates with diverse skill sets and experiences, challenging the traditional norm of qualifications.

Soft skills

In this evolving environment we are also seeing employers place a renewed emphasis on soft skills. It’s no longer just about ticking off technical proficiencies; employers are looking for individuals who can demonstrate leadership, critical thinking, and effective time management.

All things considered, with a touch of planning, it is possible to land that new role or make that carefully considered career change. Successful candidates invest in the application process, rather than viewing it as just another hoop to jump through. Taking the time to research each prospective employer in detail is vital to tailor your CV to fit with the role’s requirements. Nobody, I repeat – nobody – should be submitting generic CVs in 2024. If you want a recruiter or future boss to take your application seriously you need to do your homework. Understand the company’s needs and figure out how you can fulfil them.

Flexible working

We’re also beginning to see a backlash against remote and hybrid working with some companies reverting to more traditional in-office working arrangements. The key with this is to understand your own needs first, how flexible can you be? Communicate this openly to your future employer. In a good recruitment process, there should be time to discuss flexible working and the office culture more broadly. It’s important here to show how your work style ultimately benefits them.

If you’re a job seeker in 2024, invest in each application, highlight your soft skills, tailor your applications to each opportunity and embrace AI – it might just be the reason your CV lands on the desk of your next boss.

*Ed Pritchard is Managing Partner of executive search firm Anderson Quigley.

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