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Why you need an employer brand

– By Andrew Openshaw

Attracting and retaining the right kind of talent is central to any company’s ability to grow and this applies just as much to SMEs as it does to larger organisations.

There are many definitions for employer branding but they all explain a company’s ability to differentiate itself from competitors through a unique Employee Value Proposition (EVP).  A strong EVP will communicate the company values in a way that highlights what makes that workplace unique and attractive to individuals sharing the same values. As employer brands are based on intangible factors such as image, identity, and perception, being able to discover what it is about a brand that creates an emotional inclination and a sense of identification with the company, can prove invaluable to employers. Continue reading →

180 Days

– By Andrew B Morris

Recruiting new talent is fundamental to growth and needs to be part of a well thought-through process that evaluates skills, experience, ambition, culture and values. This is (or should be) a highly objective process, because at this stage, there is no emotional attachment to the candidate or to any decision to appointment them (or not).

When we finally decide who gets the job, we can often feel that we then own the responsibility of being proved right – that we’ve made the right all on this hire. But this obsession with being proved right can sometimes blind our objectivity during that all-important probationary period. Continue reading →

How to get the best bang from your recruitment buck

– By Raj Tulsiani

Every well-managed organisation focuses on maximising value from every part of its supply chain, and recruitment is no exception. This isn’t just about reducing costs; it’s about fine-tuning supplier relationships to ensure that you get the best return on your investment.

But achieving a genuine return on investment from your recruitment supply chain won’t happen by accident: the best organisations understand how to apply and maintain the appropriate level of pressure on their recruitment agencies to ensure that they are underpinning the company’s strategy. And this is important because when you think about it, what’s more important than finding the right talent and retaining it once you’ve got it? Continue reading →

Terms of Reference

– By Jayne Morris

Checking the references of prospective employees is often left until late in the recruitment process, if it’s done at all. But omitting this crucial part of the recruitment process can be a grave error. Checking references is a great tool for deciding between equally qualified candidates, or for weeding out applicants who won’t be suited to your organisation’s culture. It can be very hard to tell what someone is like to work with on a day-to-day basis from a formal interview.

When is the best time to conduct checks?

You don’t want to get to the end of a lengthy recruitment process only to find out your chosen candidate’s references don’t stack up. However, obtaining references can be a time-consuming process and too difficult to do for every candidate in the running. Continue reading →

Case Study: Recruiting using LinkedIn

Adrian Spink is CEO of Company85, an independent IT consultancy specialising in IT transformation and security. Based in London, the company provides advisory, implementation and managed services to FTSE100 clients and public sector organisations across the UK and EMEA. Adrian is a member of Academy Group 1, Vince Tickel’s Central London group.

Why did you try LinkedIn as a recruitment tool?

When we first set up the company five years ago we were unknown, so attracting talent of any kind was difficult and attracting good sales people – who look for a business with a track-record so they can earn their commissions – was even harder. But over time we’ve become well-established and have a visible and successful brand now. It’s important to have that credibility if you want to try the LinkedIn route for recruitment. Continue reading →

CV Humour


Two tribes

– By Andrew Morris

We come across two tribes of people in the business world. The Do-ers who do what they say or agreed to do. And the Talk-ers, who do not.

We know where we are with the Do-ers. They like responsibility and are fulfilled by getting things done and pleasing us. Once we’ve delegated, it’s out of our head and into theirs. Organisations and relationships thrive with Do-ers.

Continue reading →

Turbocharge your sales team

– By Dan Bobinski

If your sales stop, so does your business. And regardless of your company’s structure, the people who perform your sales function need to be nurtured because their job can be a tough one, wrought with failure, rejection, and frustration. To keep salespeople engaged, they need to be encouraged and supported.
Here are some top tips.

1. Give your sales people encouragement and recognition. That doesn’t mean the sort of gung-ho ‘psyching up’ you’d give a sports team, but specific encouragement: “I really like the way you’re doing ‘X’ lately.” That sort of public encouragement is fuel for a sales person’s soul. Mark Twain said “I can live for two months on one good compliment.” Salespeople live on compliments, too. Continue reading →

Measuring up: winning with KPIs

– By Edward Cox

Identifying the correct key performance indicators (KPIs) has significant benefits for any business. But too often these values – which help demonstrate how effectively a company is achieving its key business objectives – are poorly understood and executed, difficult to measure, meaningless, confusing or even in conflict with ultimate business goals.

Working across a range of industries, we have witnessed KPIs that, while appearing sensible, have in fact cost the client hundreds of thousands of pounds annually. For example, a print maintenance services company we worked with had KPIs covering ‘first time fix’, ‘low recall rate within 10 days’ and the ‘number of site visits per day’. At first glance, these KPIs appeared to highlight engineers who were providing a good service. But in actual fact they were hiding a critical metric – how many visits it was taking each engineer to do a job. What’s more, this meant that an engineer could ‘work the system’ by doing temporary fixes, ultimately leading to poor client satisfaction.

Continue reading →

Become your own Chief Energy Officer

– By Celynn Erasmus

Business owners and executives today have to operate within a hyper-challenging space which is constantly changing and which demands an often unsustainably high work-rate. Coupled with fewer resources, these high demands often exceed our capacity, resulting in exhaustion, low energy levels, decreased mental agility, illness and burnout.

What we know is that energy is contagious – and disproportionately so if you’re a leader! If you’re modelling positive, healthy choices as a ‘C.E.O.’ within the workplace, you can be guaranteed productivity and profits will improve. Dr Schwartz from The Energy Project expresses it perfectly by suggesting that you need to become your own Chief Energy Officer so that you know how to mobilise energy on demand. Continue reading →