Tag Archive for Elkie Holland

Abba – A Recruiter’s Lament

Guest post by Elkie Holland from Prospectus IT Recruitment.

I’m sure we’re all familiar with the lyrics of “Ring Ring”  by Abba from 1973.  Listen to it again now and visualise a Recruiter sitting at their desk having advertised their latest job and waiting for the star candidate to call them.

I (recruiter) sit and wait and wonder about you (quality candidate)
It’s a dark and dreary night
Seems like nothing’s going right
(no placements)
Won’t you tell me how can I go on here without you?
(no quality candidate = no placement)

Yes I’m down and feeling blue
And I don’t know what to do, oh-oh

Ring, ring, why don’t you give me a call?

Is this a sad visualisation or a stark reality or perhaps a prophesy about to come true ?

Well, times have changed dramatically in the recruiting world and if Recruiters don’t change with it, they may well be sitting there singing this song.

You were here and now you’re gone
Hey did I do something wrong?

To be honest, the Recruiter may not have done something wrong, but they certainly aren’t doing things right if they’re still stuck with the mind-set of 1973 i.e. drafting up a nice little advert, placing it in the newspaper or trade magazine and sitting back and waiting for dozens of quality candidates to give them a call to tell them how great they are for their vacancy. 

Now I know 1973 seems a long time ago, and most many reading this won’t have been born then let alone been Recruiting at that time !  However, recruiting was still like this up until not so very long ago, except adverts were placed on the job boards rather than in newspapers or magazines.

Tell me, are we really through?
Won’t you hear me cry and you will know that my heart is breaking

The answer to this is that Recruiters are not finished.  They are still needed.

Yes I’m down and feeling blue
And I don’t know what to do, oh-oh

Recruiters need to adapt and move with the times.  Unless you’ve been hiding under rock, then you’ll have realised that Social Media has arrived and it’s here to stay.   Social Media has turned the Recruiting world on its head.  Recruiters are being forced to ‘hunt’ for quality candidates rather than just rely on ad response and waiting for their phone to ring.

It’s not that quality candidates are all hiding or don’t have phones and never reply to adverts but they are now being approached in a variety of different ways.  Therefore, they don’t always need to hunt vacancies on job boards and respond to adverts.  If a quality candidate has a LinkedIn profile, chances are they get a half a dozen or so In-mails a week starting with  ……. “I hope you don’t mind the approach, but I found your details on LinkedIn and wondered if you would be able to help me/be interested in etc”.    They may also have a Facebook profile and have been sent a personal message, or have been contacted via their Twitter account.  So candidates are being served opportunities in more ways than just traditional advertising from recruitment agencies and direct employers !

Won’t you please understand the need in me
So, ring, ring, why don’t you give me a call?

So, if you’re a Recruiter and you’re just sitting waiting for the star quality candidate to call you, then this song could be your song very soon !   Instead of you lamenting that the candidates “understand the need in you” and that they “call” you,  perhaps you should understand the needs of the candidate and go to them.

1973 was a great place to be a recruiter (and so was 1983, 1993 and 2003) but times have changed and you need to change too.  2012 is still a great time to be a Recruiter but you need to adapt to the exciting changes of the time.

To summarise: 

I am not saying job boards are dead, I am saying that Recruiters are no longer needed.  What I am saying is that Recruiters need to do more and get Social if they wish to avoid adopting the Abba song “Ring Ring” as their Lament  !

Guest Post: David Walliams Social Community – Elkie Holland

Source: Indepependent.co.uk

It’s been amazing to watch David Walliams swim the Thames in aid of international charity sports relief. As much as his physical feat has been awe-inspiring, it’s also been incredible to see how people have used social to connect, follow his progress and ultimately raise money for the cause.
Whether it has been following his progress on twitter via a hashtag, leaving words of encouragement on Facebook or donating via a dedicated page, people felt a part of it much more than watching from the side-lines on TV.
Listening to the post event interviews, Walliams has commented on how surprised he was by the number of people who turned out on the river banks, swam in the river, partied in riverside houses and gave their support, as well as the speed at which they gave money, and the amounts at which they gave.
It is another real example of the reach and power of the social channels to mobilise people behind a cause that they want to be a part of. Nobody formally tells people where to be or when, they tell each other and the crowd gets swept up and joins in. Because people have access, they can take part.
This is my video of my day on the river cheering on David Walliams:

David’s epic swim has done a number of things

Looking at the things he has had to overcome (aside from a very long swim.)

  • The aches and pains of swimming from Lechlade in Gloucestershire to the edge of London
  • Battled diarrhoea, vomiting and low energy levels from “Thames tummy”.
  • Struggled with a painful rash where his wetsuit has rubbed his neck
  • Rescued a dog – Cookham Lock in Berkshire
  • Walliams’s wife, model Lara Stone, had to be  from a support boat which became stuck due to the movement of the tide yesterday. She had to be picked up by a boat operated by challenge sponsor BT .

Walliam’s finished the epic swim at Westminster Bridge yesterday  and so far has raised over £1 million. He has also made a lot of people smile in difficult times.

Walliams, 40, said of the support he has received: “I never expected this to catch the public’s imagination like it has – there seems to have been a real carnival atmosphere around. It which is lovely.”

What’s he done ?

David Walliams has done a lot:

He’s raised over £1 million for Sport Relief. He anticipated raising £200k!

He’s created a fantastic buzz and united people in his efforts by giving them something to take part in. Everyone taking part in the streams, sharing his news, progress and updates or adding words of support, had an opportunity to touch and share in his awesomeness. Everything had all the component parts of a real “community” where those involved could contribute by donating their own reach and networks to the cause.

With a very simple call to action, asking people to donate to the cause, there’s a simple end result. The message gets spread and people feel inspired to give. People gave because they got the message, shared in the exploit and most importantly, had a very easy way of doing so. All social needs a simple call to action.

On my part, I’m  humbled  to have witnessed part of David’s epic swim and to have cheered him on, hung out of a tree paparazzi style to take pictures, and paddled alongside him in a kayak. It’s been a lot of fun, and great to be a part of this community.

Walliams made the effort and a great effort that was, and the people, enabled by social took it to a whole new dimension.

(Oh: and Walliams klout went from 36 – 53 over the last week!)

You can find out about Sports Relief and donate HERE

The Apprentice Recruiter Scheme

As Lord Sugar’s hunt for an Apprentice draws to a close, recruitment firms look to tap into the benefits of a new Apprentice Recruiter Scheme, launched last month

Prospectus IT Recruitment’s Managing Director Elkie Holland took a few moments to tell me about the exciting new apprenticeship scheme that was launched last month and why it is the perfect solution to help her company grow:

By Elkie Holland

Prospectus IT Recruitment is a niche boutique agency specialising in the IT market. We have been operating in the IT sector for over 20 years and pride ourselves on our integrity and our straight-talking approach.  The last two years have undoubtedly been challenging for the recruitment industry but in the last 6 months we are really beginning to see an upturn in the IT recruitment market and it is picking up with increasing rapidity.

In response to this new growth we have been looking to expand our team, and I came across the opportunity to take on an apprentice, with an apprentice training scheme that was specifically targeted at the recruitment industry.  On a personal level, I have always been very interested in ensuring that candidates with limited or no experience are given support to find ways of entering the marketplace – after all everyone has to start somewhere!   Over the years we have taken on apprentices in other areas of the business, but until now there hasn’t been a tailored scheme or a structured framework that would have enabled us to take on an apprentice recruiter.

The training and support for the newly launched recruitment apprenticeship scheme that we’re participating in, is provided by Expedient Training Consultancy and it’s the first time a package like this has been put together specifically for our industry.  I think it provides candidates and recruitment businesses with a fantastic opportunity that’s long-overdue in this sector.  The apprentice recruiters will gain 4 industry recognised qualifications during the 12 month training programme, including the REC’s Certificate in Recruitment Practice, so it really does provide a structured learning path which sets them up to build a solid career in recruitment.  The training includes a mixture of both traditional and modern recruiting techniques, including a focus on the latest social media opportunities which is invaluable, and it teaches the apprentice about the ethics and standards, the technologies available to them as a recruiter, the people skills, negotiation skills, sourcing methods and so on.

I think a key benefit of the scheme for us is that when you take on a new consultant, there is immediately a pressure for them to perform and deliver return on investment, and this can sometimes be counter-productive particularly if the recruit is relatively inexperienced and still finding their feet.  With the apprenticeship scheme both parties are signing up to the idea of a structured training programme, and you can really spend some time ensuring that the apprentice is building a full tool-box of techniques that will help them perform, whilst also not only developing best practice but also learning about how we do things here and fitting in with our approach rather than picking up bad habits or questionable ethics in desperation to bring in results.  Initially the base apprenticeship salary is lower than a consultant’s salary which, alongside the structured nature of the programme, also helps take the pressure off the candidate and off the business.  But the apprentice still has the opportunity to earn good money quickly, through good performance and they are motivated and more loyal because they recognise that we are investing in their future.

Expedient have secured funding from the government to provide 150 fully funded apprenticeship schemes to recruitment companies like ours, with opportunities in London, Manchester, Birmingham and Nottingham. We just thought it was too good an opportunity to pass up – the funded recruitment training itself is worth over £6000.  For our apprentice, we are looking for a conscientious, enthusiastic person with good attention to detail and a naturally inquisitive approach.  They will be eager to learn and will be able to demonstrate commitment and initiative through their education or hobbies.  We offer a highly personalised service and pride ourselves on our responsiveness so they would also need to be a real people-person and have good “talkability” skills, as I like to call it.  We have fun here and we ensure that  we “tell it like it is.”  You can’t get better training than joining a specialised agency like ours, learning from the ground up and becoming an industry specialist.  It’s a tremendous opportunity for a newbie to the industry and we’re really proud to be able to offer it.

For further information or to participate in the Apprenticeship Scheme:

If you have been looking to expand your team and are interested in taking on an Apprentice Recruiter to help your business grow, please visit www.recruitment-apprenticeship.co.uk or contact Paul Deen on 0800 612 5402 email paul.deen@expedient-training.org.uk

Alternatively, if you or you think you know someone who has what it takes to be our Apprentice, please get in touch, Elkie Holland of Prospectus IT Recruitment on 01932 269563 or  email elkie@prospectus.co.uk