Category Archives: Recruitment

All Change!

I’ve been a little quiet of late and now is the time to share the reason why.   Firstly, Indigo Red moved offices.  After a few teething problems with IT and phones we’re now up and running and are in swanky new offices in the heart of Watford town centre. 

Secondly, I have a new job.  Tomorrow is my last day at Indigo Red and I will be joining my new company at the end of the month – after a week of R&R and visiting parents, taking the cats to the vets and having my eyes tested!  I am going back to my recruitment beginnings and am re-joining the Taylor Bennett family to work on a new venture recruiting graduates.  Although I will be working across all industries recruiting fresh faced grads, I will still keep a hand in the PR industry so if you need AEs, give me a call.

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The Good, the not so bad and the ugly

With the launch of VlogYourJob just around the corner, I’ve been scouring the net for recruitment videos already online, and these are the ones I had to share!

The Good:
Connected Ventures put this online and had over 4 millions views, which resulted in countless CVs

http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=173714&server=vimeo.com&fullscreen=1&show_title=1&show_byline=1&show_portrait=1&color=00ADEF

Lip Dub – Flagpole Sitta by Harvey Danger from amandalynferri and Vimeo.

The Not So Bad:
Google.  A little long and very American, but not bad!

The Ugly:
Ernst & Young (in 2001 admittadly)…. I cringed and cringed and cringed….

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Training Course Review – Don’t Become a Frog

A couple of weeks ago, Louise Triance of UK Recruiter asked me if I’d like a free place on Warren Kemp’s training course "Don’t become a frog, 250 tips for busy recruiters", in exchange she asked me to write a piece for the UK Recruiter Newsletter.  So I jumped at the chance.  And here’s the review:

The launch of the latest Harry Potter best seller wasn’t the only interesting thing going on at Waterstones in Piccadilly last recently.   Thursday afternoon saw me and a colleague fighting our way through west-end shoppers to the top floor of the book store to join 35 other delegates at Warren Kemp’s session on tips for top recruiters. 

My colleague had previously been to other training sessions with Warren, and rated him highly, so it was with enthusiastic anticipation that we stumbled into the room for a glass of champagne and a chat with some other attendees before the main event.  It seemed a good mix of experienced recruiters and new comers to the industry with plenty of chat about how competitive the recruitment industry is and how finding new and innovative ways of attracting talent are become more and more crucial.

Cue the start of the session. Warren is a charismatic and personable presenter who engaged the audience early on and kept our attention throughout, although there was a bit of random jumping about from subject to subject but that’s quite a good reflection of the book on which the course is based.  Promising to cover tips on clients, candidates, relationships and “being a better human being” he launched into tips on marketing your services, followed by how to build relationships with both clients and candidates and some handy tips on managing your work load (do the jobs you don’t want to do first, don’t put them off – it’s my new work ethic).  There was a fair amount of audience participation in the day asking for our ideas on what makes a good candidate, job or client and a bit of a “raise your hand if”… type approach (we discovered in one straw poll that 50% of recruiters were on Facebook, 43% on LinkedIn, 10% on ecademy and 0% on Xing, which is a good a representation as any!).

There was an opportunity for a cup of coffee and networking half way through the session (although plenty of us were on the phone or busily tapping away at emails on our Blackberries), and the chance to stretch our legs before finishing the session with some useful handouts on working out client and candidate audits and a quick sell from Warren on a training course in Barcelona (we are tempted!)

We were all given a copy of Warren’s book, “Don’t Become a Frog (250 tips for busy recruiters)” at the end of the day and I found myself reading it on the train home so the subject had gripped me enough to want to find out more.  The tip on how not to be a frog is number 164 for those of you that are interested!  I left the session feeling that there are definitely some tips I can implement at work and I’d recommend both the course and the book to other recruiters who are striving to make the best of their desk.

You can find out more about Warren’s training at http://www.recruitmentmatters.com/

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The Sunday Times 100 Best Companies

Indigo Red will be moving offices in the next couple of months.  My husband, who works for a removal firm, came with me to the office on Saturday to work out how much the move is going to cost us (his labour is free, but I’m not sure I could pay his work mates in kind). In a minor panic that he will realise my work life is not quite as organised as my home one, I had a bit of a tidy up of my desk on Friday.  Among the old interview notes and endless business cards I found a copy of The Sunday Times 100 best companies to work for, 2007.  It’s been lurking there since March as I had intended to blog about it, and somehow had slipped between an old pile of payslips and some HR trade mags.

So anyway, only a mere 5 months late and here I am ready to write about it.

I thumbed through it once more and scanned the list for PR companies.  Only 1 PR agency made the top 100, Hill and Knowlton, who scraped in at number 91.  Scanning through the piece on them there are some things which are unsurprising; the male/female ratio is 36:64 – still a considerably better distribution of the sexes than some agencies, and the average age of an H&Ker is 32.  There is considerable attention given to the free scoff and booze you can get there – free breakfast and free food after quarterly meetings, plus an onsite bar.  However, they score some of the lowest scores in the 100 in terms of work life balance, as nearly half the staff said they felt they spent too much time working.

Still, I wonder what the 88% that said they have fun with their colleagues are up to?

On a slightly different tangent, I also looked for recruitment consultancies.  There are a whopping 14 recruitment companies in the top 100, with Hill McGlynn & Associates topping the list at number 12.  Impressive numbers from the recruitment industry.

As these Best Company rankings are voted for by the employees, it begs the question are recruitment companies better at their own employment PR than the PR experts?

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If you snooze, do you lose?

Sleeping_on_job_5

Louise Triance’s post about UK workers wanting a siesta coincided with a report from Reuters yesterday, that Hungary may be undergoing a referendum on whether or not an afternoon nap becomes a legal requirement for the workplace.  I’m not sure that Hungary’s employers should be too worried yet though, since the fall of communism in 1989 there have been plenty of referendums and only two have passed – joining NATO and the European Union.

Still, it highlighted the work/life balance issue once more.  Back in January, This is Money reported that Britons work the longest hours in Europe.  Our continental cousins work far less hours, in France the average is 38.2 per week, in Germany it’s 39.9 and yet in the UK it’s 43.5.  As a nation, we have a culture of unpaid overtime, and being the last to leave the office can be seen as a badge of status – I’m the busiest person here, I can’t possibly leave on time (although you could argue if you worked smarter, and got your job done during the core work hours you wouldn’t need to stay behind).

Some of the more enlightened employers are now actively encouraging their employees to go home on time instead of burning the midnight oil in the office. 

As a recruiter, when I interview candidates and ask what they would like from their next job, work/life balance comes at the top of a lot of lists.  Flexible working, working from home, 3 and 4 day weeks are all regular requests.  Those employers who are keen to get the best talent, and retain the best people, are aware that offering these benefits can be a huge draw and are often more highly valued than a pay rise.

Still, an afternoon kip would be nice.  Wonder if I could nip off to the boardroom and have a cat nap?

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PR Job Watch takes off!

Pr_job_watch Our Facebook group, PR Job Watch, is really taking off.  We now have over 100 members and with recruitment consultants and PR agencies signing up to advertise their jobs there there may finally be an easy place to see what’s happening in the PR job market.  You don’t have to join if you’re worried about your boss seeing you belonging to a job focussed group – just bookmark it and come back when you need us. 

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Fame at last!

No, I’m not one of the reserve contestants for Big Brother 8.  One head hunter on there is enough don’t you think?  Instead I’ve been featured on Louise Triance’s blog, of UK Recruiter.  Thanks Louise!

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