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5 steps closer to a winning team in 2020

After a fantastic year with a double up from the Tigers and Springboks, I got to thinking about how the business sector builds ‘winning teams’. How do they go about finding and securing their talent, and critically, how do they decide whether new employees will be a positive addition to the overall team dynamic?

We all know how quickly one bad apple can ruin the entire barrel…

For most businesses, their people (or human capital) represent a significant investment. Therefore, considering both the cost and non-financial impact of a poor hire, it always intrigues me that a lot of business leaders still don’t perceive value in a solid and robust search process.

If you look ahead at what you envisage your team will look like as you adapt to changing conditions, will you pay credence to talent pooling? Or is your hiring mostly reactionary? The best teams I’ve worked with are constantly looking ahead and assessing their strengths and weaknesses with an eye to plugging the gaps.

Do you try to do your own hiring to save the cost of a recruitment fee? Even if you have an outstanding internal recruitment team, there will be instances where the pure breadth of their focus may mean a lack of exposure to a particular talent stream.

There is no doubt that the war for truly exceptional talent is increasing, and I believe that more than ever, hiring managers are starting to realise the value of a search partner with proven results in their sector. I am consistently finding that more organisations and internal recruitment teams are aligning themselves with a trusted and proven search partner – not for every role, but certainly where they want to ensure the best results in a highly competitive and skill short sector.

With all of this in mind, the real issue becomes how to select the right executive recruitment firm for your needs? Here are 5 points to consider when evaluating the right partner:

  1. Legacy – a firm with good history and reputation
  2. Results – a firm that can demonstrate success through past work and client references
  3. Partnership – a team of consultants who not only excel at what they do, but also genuinely have your and your organisation’s best interests in mind
  4. Research capability – there are varying degrees of quality when it comes to research; true research capability involves much more than LinkedIn
  5. Value – a lower fee doesn’t necessarily signify the best value; a thorough process, good consulting, and the best possible hire (and post hire care) will deliver greater returns

It sounds daunting (and it can be), which is why you need to engage the right partner. Nothing beats the feeling and the results of securing an outstanding addition to your business. I look forward to helping you build a high-performance team who will be kicking their goals into the new year and beyond.

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Posted in Accounting & Finance, The world @work

Dipping my toes in the ocean: A celebration of my first 10 years in Australia

In November I celebrated my 10 year anniversary as a proud Melbourne resident. My arrival here from South Africa coincided with the GFC, which has given me pause for thought around the 10 year economic cycle, and what I’ve seen in the local recruitment market during this time.

In my first year here, my beloved Tigers (yes, I have an AFL team) came second last to the Demons (substantial improvement since then). In my other passion, the Springboks had just won the World Cup (not so much improvement). I was also working from a small office in Mount Waverley recruiting Accountants in the South East (nothing wrong with that, but most would agree Collins Street is a substantial improvement).

The recruitment landscape has changed drastically in the last ten years, with some substantial players downsizing and others disappearing, while a number of newcomers quickly established themselves and continue to go from strength to strength. The market for talent continues to become ever more competitive, with the top-drawer operators demonstrating the value in building strong relationships, providing exceptional service and reducing hiring risk with a robust methodology.

Recruitment trends

Other trends have been the evolution of internal recruitment capability within medium to large organisations and conversely, the rise of the RPO (recruitment process outsourcing) model, with an increasing number of organisations ramping up this function. Whereas talent acquisition was previously limited to larger corporate organisations, increasingly SMEs and smaller businesses have added recruitment to their HR functions. This has delivered mixed levels of success. With no clear winner between the internal team and an outsourced or RPO model, a number of businesses have sought to return the function in-house. In the mix, professional recruiters like me have enjoyed the opportunity to partner with internal recruitment teams, especially on senior assignments and hard to source specialist roles where exploring the passive talent market is essential.

Sector trends

The industry landscape has seen some other big shifts, with sectors like Manufacturing and Print taking a massive hit. Technological change, including AI, robotics, automation and digitalisation is one of the factors at play, but the impact of globalisation and government policy on a whole range of issues, from tariffs and trade to employment regulations, has suited some more than others: Ecommerce, Education, Advanced Manufacturing, Engineering, and Food & Agribusiness are all growing well.

In the recruitment sector, a trend towards higher volume/lower level recruitment activity was obvious over the last decade. What is becoming increasingly clear, however, is that there will always be tremendous value for organisations in developing meaningful relationships with talent and the consultants who have access to diverse professionals across broad as well as niche industry networks.

I have been extremely fortunate to have met some outstanding people in the last ten years – clients, candidates and colleagues – and have thoroughly enjoyed watching their careers develop. In many instances they have become valued connections who continue to inspire me and others with their achievements. It has been an exciting ride!  Now working with Geoff Slade and the team at Slade Group (Geoff recently celebrated 50 years in business), I realise that the last ten years is just a drop in the ocean. Here’s looking forward to the next ten years in the world @work. Thanks to all of you for your valued support and friendship over the last decade.

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Posted in Accounting & Finance, The world @work