Tag: Career development

  1. Four Valuable Lessons I’ve Learned as a Recruiter

    I established my own search agency over 20 years ago and over the course of my career, I’ve encountered a multitude of experiences that have shaped my approach and taught me invaluable lessons. Here are four key takeaways that have significantly influenced my journey as a recruiter, that I hope will be of interest:

    1. Communication is Key

    One of the most fundamental lessons I’ve learned is the importance of effective communication throughout the recruitment process. From initial outreach to final negotiations, clear and timely communication is essential for fostering positive relationships with candidates and clients alike. Whether it’s providing feedback after interviews, managing expectations regarding job roles, or simply keeping candidates informed about the status of their application, transparent communication builds trust and credibility. Moreover, active listening plays a crucial role in understanding the needs and aspirations of both candidates and hiring managers. This allows you to tailor your approach accordingly and ensure alignment between all parties involved.

    1. Adapt but Focus

    The recruitment landscape is constantly evolving, driven by technological advancements, shifting market trends, and changing candidate expectations. As a recruiter, adaptability is not just a desirable trait but a necessity. Embracing new tools and methodologies, staying updated on industry best practices, and being willing to pivot strategies in response to emerging challenges are all critical aspects of staying ahead in the game. But be smart, not all new techniques and technologies are all they are cracked up to be and some may well have little impact on your ability to achieve your goals. Don’t always believe the hype – evaluate what will increase your effectivity and enable you to deliver better results. Don’t be afraid to dismiss products and new technology which will have little or no impact on your success.

    1. Build Meaningful Relationships

    Recruitment is not just about recruiting; it’s about connecting with people and making a positive impact on their lives and careers. Building meaningful relationships with candidates and clients goes beyond the transactional aspects of the job; it’s about understanding their goals, motivations, and aspirations on a deeper level. Taking the time to cultivate genuine connections will foster long-term partnerships built on mutual respect and trust. Commit to working with people that value you and what you do, and this will help you achieve a high success rate.

    Furthermore, maintaining a strong network of professionals within the industry not only expands opportunities for sourcing top talent but also facilitates knowledge-sharing and collaboration, enriching your own growth.

    Keep in mind that your relationships are with people and not necessarily with organisations. Always treat your candidates as customers – they could turn out to be your next client.

    1. Know your value and don’t be afraid to walk away

    There will be times when hiring managers or candidates don’t value you and what you do.  These are unlikely to be people you can help so it’s better to walk away.

    Don’t work on roles you are not confident that you can successfully appoint to. Why would you? It’s a waste of everybody’s time and effort and will ultimately damage your reputation and affect your ability to achieve a high success rate.

    Make sure you trust the client and ensure they are serious about the recruitment process. I’ve had the occasional experience of being asked to work on a role when it was obvious it wasn’t going to work; either because the client already had a candidate in mind or were struggling as an organisation and so would be difficult to work with as a recruiter.  Always ask yourself, is this is a suitable opportunity with a suitable organisation that I should recommend to my candidates?

    Stay true to your principles and focus on how you can increase your success rate getting as close to 100% as you can.

  2. How to stop candidates logging off and tuning out

    How to stop candidates logging off and tuning out

    Social media has transformed the way we live, work and communicate.  But with more connections taking place on screen than in person are we in danger of losing the art of conversation?

    From a recruitment perspective we are increasingly hearing from candidates who feel disengaged simply because of the amount of online ‘noise’. They feel constantly bombarded with communications promising them their ‘ideal job’ that in reality are often totally unsuitable roles. And the result is simply making candidates lose interest.

    Too many hirers are relying on generic approaches to attract candidates, but these no longer work in an online world where there is simply so much content and competition to attract attention. Without investing time and energy into really knowing the industry and actually talking to people and getting to know your next recruits, potential candidates are being missed.

    But we believe that nothing beats building real person to person relationships.

    Organisations in all sectors need to get better at getting to know their potential next recruits.  Anyone hiring needs to build and develop relationships in order to understand if the organisation, the role and the individual would be a good fit that would enable both sides to achieve their future goals. Candidates’ needs, strengths, motivators and countless other nuances need to be considered to fill a vacancy effectively; issues that are much better dealt with in person not on screen.

    Ask yourself, as an organisation would you offer a contract to a supplier who sent you a speculative message on a social media site or who posted an advert? Would you as a talented individual in your sector invest time applying for a role that was pumped to you and countless others via social media or online job adverts?  Probably not! A lot more work has to go into building and developing that relationship. And person to person conversations are a vital part of that process.

    If your recruitment methods are falling on deaf ears and you would like to talk to us please get in touch or call us on 023 8000 1153.  Or, if you are considering a career move but want a targeted, managed approach please contact us for a real conversation!

  3. Live well work well

    The rising cost of living is affecting us all (and our bank balances), and it’s also having a marked impact on the employment market; driving more people to look for a new job.
    With more candidates looking to change jobs, employers are having to do more in order to attract the best candidates and retain current staff.

    Benefits packages
    Job hunting isn’t simply about salary and take home pay. Employers are looking for new and innovative ways to improve quality of life for their staff; from offering home and hybrid working options to free food and coffee, healthcare and gym membership. The list of ‘extra benefits’ on job adverts is escalating as organisations compete to attract and retain the best people.
    Supplying employee benefits packages is a growing sector in itself. Perkbox – a global benefits and rewards platform – claims this helps to keep each employee happy, healthy and motivated, and that employee experience and wellbeing is now more critical than ever.
    Promoting mental and physical wellbeing at work have long been recognised as the foundations for a successful business as happy workers are more productive and less likely to leave their jobs or take time off sick.

    Financial wellbeing
    However, in today’s cost of living crisis, organisations are also looking for ways to support the financial wellbeing of staff. With more people worrying about money (and bringing those worries to work with them) it makes perfect sense to extend wellbeing strategies to help staff cope with today’s tough economic climate. The CIPD even suggest that all employers should consider implementing a financial wellbeing policy to let staff know where they can seek help if needed.
    Home working options certainly reduce petrol and travel costs, but may in turn increase utility bills or create the need for a better home broadband connection. Some employers are even offering to contribute towards these costs.
    Many organisations are waking up to the fact that financial wellbeing amongst staff makes good business sense. Providing employees with access to free or discounted professional financial advice helps people keep control of their household budgets as the cost of living spirals. It’s all about equipping staff with the tools to deal with concerns around debt, savings or expenses; daily worries we’re all experiencing that could affect performance at work.

  4. Dive in to a Board role!




    Adrian Moorhouse and Sue Anstiss, board members of Leisure Focus.


    Former Olympic swimmer Adrian Moorhouse is just one of the growing number of people who are offering to share skills and experience on a Board in order to help a local organisation.

    Adrian joined the Board of Leisure Focus – a not-for-profit charitable body that promotes sports in local communities across Berkshire – last year. As a former high profile athlete he’s an ideal candidate to endorse and encourage healthier lifestyles, but Board positions are open to anyone, regardless of skills and qualifications. And as well as giving something back to your local community, volunteering as a Board member often delivers a host of personal and professional benefits as well.

    Adrian says acting as a Trustee is a wonderful opportunity to champion a cause you feel passionate about:

    “I have lived in the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead for over 25 years and have a huge affection for the area. As I am passionate about the support and facilities for health and wellbeing being available to everyone in our community, it made perfect sense to join the Board of Leisure Focus. It’s great to work alongside like-minded people on the Board who really care about the Borough and I am proud to champion and be an advocate for all things Leisure Focus. The role of Trustee has challenged me in that my experience is not specifically from this sector so I am learning and developing new skills. Joining the Board has definitely been a worthwhile and rewarding experience.”

    One of Adrian’s colleagues on the Board, Sue Anstiss, is also well known in the sports and fitness sector. As a tireless campaigner for women’s sport, Sue was a founding Trustee of the Women’s Sport Trust charity. She says getting involved as a Trustee with Leisure Focus was a way to give something back to her local community:

    “I believe passionately about the importance of sport and physical activity for all ages. Having enjoyed the extensive facilities and services across the Borough over the past 30 years – both myself and for my three daughters – I wanted to give back in some way. Helping people maintain their mental and physical health has never been more important and I hope my involvement on the Board can play a part in ensuring our facilities are available for all.”

    Sue urges anyone who is considering volunteering with a Board to go for it:

    “You’ll get back as much as you put in. Come to the role with enthusiasm and be willing to share your expertise and experience. It’s incredibly rewarding to support the fantastic team on the ground at Leisure Focus and it’s a pleasure to watch and support the incredible work they are doing during this challenging time. We’re a small, proactive Board and I really feel as if we are able to have an impact.”

    Become a Trustee

    We are working with Leisure Focus to recruit a new Trustee to join the Board. For more information please download a Recruitment Pack. For an informal chat about the role please contact Phil Foster on philipfoster@oceanedge.biz or call 023 8000 1153.

  5. Feeling stressed?

    Its mental health awareness week, and there’s probably no one on the planet who hasn’t felt stressed at some point in recent weeks. No one knows what the future may hold and that means many people are feeling under huge strain at the moment.

    Financial pressures and concerns about job security are causing many to feel worried and anxious. Yet, despite the lockdown and the resulting uncertainty we’re all feeling, now may be a good time to consider your future career options. You’ve got time on your hands to research the market, hone your CV and take stock of where you want to go and what you want to achieve. Organisations are still hiring even during the lockdown so try and see this time as an opportunity rather than a reason to get stressed.

    Changing your mindset will help to change your stress levels too and hopefully result in an improvement to your general mental health.

    We have outlined some ideas and recruitment advice below that we hope will be useful in the current situation and will help you to turn your worries into positive actions.

    Consider your transferable skills – Many of the organisations we work with are looking for people who can hit the ground running at this time. If you’re looking to move departments or even careers, think about how your workplace skills and experiences can easily transfer to other areas.

    Hone your CV – there’s a lot of people looking to move or find a new job at the moment so that means every advert receives more than the usual number of applicants. Make your CV stand out from the rest with our advice articles on creating an outstanding CV.

    Use the time to learn – if you want to plug any skills gaps in your CV now is the perfect opportunity to undertake online training and research. Keep an eye on the industry and keep your eyes open for new opportunities, sign up to our jobs alert and receive all our latest roles straight to your inbox.

    Struggling to cope with home working? – read our useful guide on how to get the best from your home working experience.

    Don’t be afraid to move to the next level – the lockdown isn’t an excuse to stay in a job that isn’t fulfilling or enjoyable. We are still actively recruiting for clients at this time, so if you’re considering a move talk to us and see how we can help move your career to the next level.

    Choose to be positive – don’t dwell on the negatives, even if it feels like nothing is going your way. Take time to think about the positives in your personal and professional life. Consider your achievements and think about how your skills, experiences and personal attributes could be of value to a potential employer and could help secure your next promotion.