Recruitment firm Eden Scott has predicted it is on course to return to pre-pandemic staffing levels as it rebounds from its first loss-making year since it was set up in 2003.

Headquartered in Edinburgh, the privately-owned firm said it will post a surge in profits for the year to March 31 as well as an increase in turnover. Recovery is being driven by growth in the technology and renewables sectors amid severe labour shortages across the wider recruitment market.

Eden Scott is also adding to its own headcount of 41 employees, which chief executive Michelle Lownie said will expand by 25 per cent in the coming year. This would take the firm back to where it was prior to the pandemic, when it had 65 members of staff.

“The pandemic hit recruitment harder than almost any other industry and I am proud of the way we have absorbed everything the last two years has thrown at us and bounced back stronger,” she said. “These results are testament to the resilience, adaptability and agility required to weather the storm and emerge stronger on the other side.”

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Pre-tax profits in the latest financial year are said to be £900,000, up from £394,000 previously. Revenues increased to £10.3 million against £9m the year before.

Eden Scott made its first-ever loss of £345,000 during the year to March 2020 after taking an expected one-off hit on an office move from St Andrew Square to Princess Street. Directors’ hopes for a strong financial recovery the following 12 months were curtailed by the onset of the pandemic which closed down large parts of economy and led many employers to delay new recruitment throughout much of 2020 and into the first part of 2021.

During that period Eden Scott was supported by emergency CBILS loans and the government’s furlough scheme, but rapid deterioration in certain markets forced it to cut 12 members of staff, marking the first redundancies in the firm’s history.

Pick-up in activity has been spearheaded by work in the renewable energy sector where the firm has been involved in several projects such as the growth of the energy and infrastructure team at Crown Estate Scotland (CES), which was responsible for managing the recent ScotWind leasing round for offshore wind farms.

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Eden Scott said it additionally benefitted from increasing activity in the Scottish start-up sector during 2021, with angel investment into these firms up 71% on the previous record year of 2019. Its work in the tech and digital sector included supporting R3 IoT, whose £3.1m investment round last summer led to several hires to aid its expansion into the United States.

The firm also extended its presence in the life sciences sector, supporting start-ups such as Cytochroma, Carcinotech and Dyneval which secured £1.8m of investment and hired seven people across a range of roles in just a few months.

“The jobs market in Scotland has recovered to levels we haven’t seen since the oil and gas boom of 2011-2014 – with recent figures showing the number of open positions outstripping the people out of work – but this time it is the rapid growth of the tech and renewables sectors that are driving the search for new talent,” Ms Lownie said.

“Despite the likelihood of recession, the tech industry continues largely unaffected by major global issues affecting other industries, and Scotland’s net zero commitments mean renewables will continue to grow.”

Eden Scott is owned by its three founders, Ms Lownie, Guy Martin and Chris Logue.