Sixty percent of recruiters think regulators won’t strongly enforce GDPR

17 September 2018, London, UK – Sixty percent of recruiters think regulators won’t strongly enforce the terms of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), according to a new survey conducted by Bullhorn, the cloud computing company that helps staffing and recruiting organisations transform their businesses.

Seventy-three percent said they have seen no impact on the way they use recruitment technology and software four months on from the introduction of GDPR, while a similar number (71 percent) said it hasn’t affected their ability to engage with candidates and clients.

Of the 100 recruitment professionals surveyed, the majority (79 percent) of recruiters agreed that GDPR won’t have a negative impact on the industry in the long-term.

Peter Linas, Executive Vice President of Corporate Development and International at Bullhorn said:

“It’s worrying to learn that a significant proportion of recruiters think the ICO and other bodies will take a liberal approach. If recruiters have seen no impact whatsoever on their use of technology and software, it might indicate that official advice and best practices are not being followed closely enough. We can’t forget that GDPR was introduced for crucial reasons: to reinforce individual data privacy rights and improve transparency around how personal information is used. Penalties for non-compliance are, naturally, very serious.”

Linas continued: “It’s now more important than ever for recruitment companies to work closely with suppliers to understand how to maximise their use of technology, while staying within the boundaries established by GDPR.”

However, when asked about preparation for GDPR, over half (53 percent) of recruiters said they had enough training and support at an individual level, while nearly three quarters (73 percent) claimed that their company was timely and efficient in carrying out its compliance plan.

Additionally, over a third (36%) of recruiters working at firms with a global reach said that their organisation plans to expand its data privacy policy to non-EU markets in light of GDPR, despite the potential challenges involved. The three most commonly cited challenges involved in preparing for GDPR were:

  • Ensuring clarity around the terms of GDPR (58%)
  • Putting new data processing policies in place (56%)
  • Auditing all IT and other data-driven systems (44%)

Linas concluded: “It’s certainly a good sign that recruitment companies are planning to expand their data privacy policies in light of GDPR. This is proof of the regulation fulfilling its overarching aim: to have companies take their customers’ data more seriously on a global scale. Nonetheless, while most took the appropriate measures to prepare for GDPR, more still needs to be done to educate staff and ensure clarity around what can and can’t be done.”

About the survey

The survey of 100 recruitment professionals was taken in August 2018.

About Bullhorn

Bullhorn is the global leader in CRM and operations software for the recruitment industry. More than 8,000 staffing companies worldwide rely on Bullhorn’s cloud-based platform to drive sales, build relationships, and power their recruitment processes from end to end. Headquartered in Boston, with offices around the world, Bullhorn is founder-led and employs more than 700 people globally. To learn more, visit or follow @Bullhorn on Twitter.

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