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The Dark Side - Sept 2012 The Dark Side - Sept 2012 Document Transcript

  • Dark SEPTEMBER 2012 WANTTww TO KNOW w. the WHY?Why theGirls ‘r’ SEE winning! PAGE 11 Secrets, Lies & Hard Work! Inside this issue: Inside this issue: Spam, Spam, Spam Still Frustrated Girls, Girls, Girls Factoring Who? Stress Test! Clare & A Few “Myths” The Power of Three!
  • EDITOR’S NOTE Girls won, Boys....lost! 2012Why do girls always seem to win?In arguments about cooking, knitting or decorating,that seems fair enough, (lol!) but why do the fairer sex Why is this TRUE?seem to be winning everything else too these days?!No such thing as a glass ceiling in recruitment it wouldappear as we boys are definitely having to take it on thechin – as the girls turn up the heat, generating moreprofits, turnover and business than the tough guys withthe stubble and the dodgy attitudes. (or is it?!)Well, apparently it really does all comes down toattitude and commitment. GIRLS ON TOP - Page 11The girls are working harder, remain more consistent inwhat they do and are more prepared to ‘get their handsdirty’ when it matters. Take a look at the ‘Girls, Girls,Girls’ article in this edition of TDS and see what youthink. Today’s SpecialElsewhere, we are still being warned about theEurozone and the ECB & whatever else. Is it just SSG or Regular Stuffall we all getting a little sick of this phoney war on the 11 Girls, Girls, Girls!causes of the problem? I am beginning to hate all of thehype, the worry and the anxiety eroding the basic will to 4 19 The Stress Testpush on and get things done.It seems it is getting harder to do the same things and 15 What’s New?yet we all have to keep plugging away. 18 Grumpy Cat Nonsense!Having said all of that, the News Section this month ispacked full of great little stories about the successes 18 Pop’s Pantrythat keep flowing from the ventures we support –profits rising, babies being born and new toilet 8 Launches!configurations being installed (thanks for that oneBarnes Frank!). 14 Don’t ForgetIn addition, it is brilliant to read about Big Sky Additionswho go from strength to strength (see ‘On the Couch’)who having decided unilaterally that the recession is Serious Bitsnot for them have seemingly found the solution to thelarger economic issues surrounding us all – just ignoreit all and ‘hit the phones!’ 6 Factoring!So, all in all we are faced with the same situation as wehave been facing since 2008 – rubbish economy but 17 Employment Mythslots of reasons to push on and ignore what happens on 23 Chris & SpamWall Street & in Brussels and make sure that you getout of bed and make a placement!That’s all it takes guys!! The Power of Three! info@ 1. All the contents of The Dark Side are only for general information and/or use. Such contents do not constitute advice and should not be relied upon in making (or refraining from making) any decision. Any specific advice or replies to queries in any part of the publication is/are the personal opinion of such experts/consultants/persons. 2. The information in The Dark Side is provided on an "AS IS" basis, and all warranties, expressed or implied of any kind, regarding any matter pertaining to any information, advice or replies are disclaimed and excluded. 3. The Dark Side and its associates shall not be liable, at any time for damages including, without limitation, damages for loss of any kind(but excluding personal injury or death caused by negligence) arising in contract, tort or otherwise from the use of or inability to use the publication, or any of its contents, or from any action taken (or refrained from being taken) as a result of using the publication or any such contents or use of information contained in the publication. 4. No representations, warranties, or guarantees whatsoever are made as to the accuracy, adequacy, reliability, completeness, suitability, or applicability of the information to a particular situation. 5. Certain references in the publication refer to third parties over whom The Dark Side has no control or connection, business or otherwise. Material Submitted by Others Some sections in The Dark Side contain materials submitted by users. The Dark Side accepts no responsibility for the content, accuracy, and conformity to applicable laws of such material, and any views or opinions expressed by such third parties are those of the author alone, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the owners or publishers of the Dark Side. Effect of these Terms These terms constitute the sole basis on which the Dark Side is published and made available and supersede and replace all prior or contemporaneous understandings or agreements, written or oral, or any implied terms which might otherwise apply. 3
  • Key Justin and Sam worked together for 3 years • Home Based Facts • Two Owners before setting up Big Sky Additions, working in the local Norfolk market in • 2010 Launch • Temp & Perm ig ky B S additions Accountancy Search & Selection Accountancy & Finance. • Finance & Accounting MOTIVATIONS So, what made you decide to SYOB? Why did you NIGGLING ANXIETIES make the transition from Employee to Business Expectation Reality Owner? For all of the rhetoric & seemingly Expectation Reality endless discussions, was it money, freedom or Freedom & Autonomy 8 8 perhaps the children which finally made you ‘get Legal Formations 8.5 8 out of recruitment & into business’? What did you expect and what has been the reality? Accounting Issues 8.5 8 Financial / Earnings 8.5 8 The Tax Man 9 8 10 10 ? Long Term Ambition The VAT Man 9 7 Increased Family Time 9.5 9 Sourcing Vacancies 8.5 6.5 Reduction in Commute 7.5 9.5 Personal Cash Flow 8.5 8.5 Escape Office Politics 8 9.5 Personal Isolation 7 6 A Difficult Employer 6 7 Restrictive Covenants 8 6.5 Technical Issues 7 7 The ‘Right Time’ 8.5 9 And before you made the big decision to SYOB, what kept you awake at night? What were the Staying Organised 5 4.5 Prove Doubters Wrong 7.5 8.5 awful worries, the ‘niggles’ you couldn’t escape? Has the Tax man been friend or foe? Did your Impact on your Family 6 6 Work / Life Balance 8 9 Restrictive Covenant hold you back? What about Making Placements 5 5 cash flow? Technology? Do you have more time 5.5 5.5 for your family? Has it been tougher than you Shorter Working Day anticipated? Room in the Market 5 5 50 WORDS ON WHY! 50 WORDS ON WHY NOT! For us, we didn’t have any doubts about the concept Justin: my main aim was to achieve freedom and a better of going it alone but what was holding us back were lifestyle – not to have to save up the chores for the weekend, to blend work and non-work tasks over the full week. the mechanics of running a business – these were the elements that made us doubt whether we Sam: it was the chance to be financially secure – with a young should be doing this. We both wanted to family, the thought of working for someone else for the rest of concentrate on the recruiting side and we were not my life filled me with dread – I was bored where I was, I so confident on how to go about actually starting needed to try it and was confident that I could succeed and building a business. 8 A: Without a doubt, Cash 8 9 Biggest challenge? A: Overall we are very Flow and everything A: Certainly we both Major upsides? So far, so good? 10 that goes with that 10 10 happy with how things element of the business enjoy the job now and have gone – we have had a has been our biggest get a huge amount of challenge. We want to good solid start and we are increase the number of satisfaction from doing it for proud of what we have vacancies coming to us ourselves – we have the without us chasing after achieved so far – there is them and achieve a freedom to work how we still a lot more to do. consistency to the billing – want to work and are not we have very high billing months and then not so high restricted in any way. – our challenge is evening this out.4
  • 5 RUNNING YOUR BUSINESS We wanted to find a company who could help us 10 “Getting family andWhy choose SSG? with the mechanics of starting Expectation? Reality? and building a business so that we friends on side wasn’t could concentrate on recruiting. We an issue - our chose SSG principally because we met David and got on well with him challenge was to show Making Placements 5 5 – we really bought in to him and our clients that we when we needed to reconnect with could compete ” SSG, he was there to help us. Work Routine 7 7 7 Personal Cash Flow 6 8 10How was the launch? Once we had managed to get out of Norfolk through the Personal Routine 7 8 Big Sky snow, the launch went well and we found it pretty straightforward – it additions would have been ideal to have met Distractions 7 7 the team before the launch date as Accountancy Search & Selection the day itself was pretty full on but it has all worked out well. Feeling Isolated 8 6 Family Support 9 9 10 The Cash Flow forecasting Candidate Attraction 7 8Most important support that we have implemented 10 recently with the help of the Toolkit has been very useful and we “Long hours, high are getting a huge amount out of the stress - these aren’t a Client Attraction 8 7 meetings we are having with David. His recent support in a mentoring negative, we do it capacity has been invaluable and we because we love it. ” Working Hours 8 8 can see our business starting to grow. Stress Levels 8 9 ADVICE FOR OTHERS? BIGGEST MISTAKE? LONG-TERM GOALS? The main thing is to have confidence in your We think that possibly we have been too Justin: to be in a financial position that for own ability – if you can visualise yourself impatient at times and that has led to sometimes few years I wouldn’t need to work if I chose running your own business then do it! Have not being guarded enough when we come not to and to be able to look back and to a good support network around you and across business advisors at networking events – have been a success. we have been at risk of being sucked into making make sure you have enough money to Sam: without a doubt, financial freedom – the wrong decisions sometimes. Our growing survive for 6 months being able to do what I want when I want, confidence in the business now means that we think we should be more aggressive when we provide for my family and be proud of the know we are in the right! business and what we’ve achieved. We have been What to do Next? working with Big Sky for a Take the Challenge? couple of years Why not Volunteer to be Clare’s – passionate next with Last about their Clare? Words market and the In Sam’s opinion: area that they Surely, it is much better to serve, they are step forward and take a hitFootball Rugby Neither carving out a niche for themselves for the team than to be within the Accounting and Finance relentlessly tracked downEastenders Corrie Neither by a seemingly pleasant &Rock Opera Neither space. Some adjustment to the services fair minded pseudoJogging Crisps Neither that we provide and the addition of a Psychiatrist?Wine Beer Neither mentor has proved to be just what the company needed to kick-start a new To take part, please contactLiterature DVD’s Neither period of growth. Although Justin feelsCasual Suited Neither CLARE ARMSTRONG he has lost his ‘baby face’ features to theUK Hol’s Overseas Neither stress of running a business, we are 01442 200 957Glasses Contacts Neither confident that he and Sam will achieve clare@supportservicesgroup.tvHistory Sci-Fi Neither their goals. 5
  • Darren’s Helpful Hints Factoring : What is it? The first consideration for any temp client pays in the agreed terms of 14 days And the bank do this for free?!?! recruitment business is how am I going to so you get your £100 from Temp Client Ltd pay my contractors? in week 4. Well No! This is before Insurance, getting However this is after the wages have been The example above has deliberately timesheets signed, filling the vacancy and paid leaving you with a shortfall. ignored the fees that the Factoring all the other steps to running a temp desk. company charge for providing this The factoring company agree that service. And why is that I hear you ask? because you have raised an invoice of These can be split into 2 charges £100 in week 2 they will lend you 90% of The short answer is that if your temps that (£90) in week 2 as a result. Service charge don’t get paid you have no temp desk. Therefore you use the £90 to pay Joe This is the charge to you for the bank The slightly less short answer is that you Bloggs in week 2. “running” the facility. pay the contractors before you get paid by the client to cover those temp So now you are at the point of where you The service charge is worked out as a payments. have borrowed £90 to pay Joe Bloggs but percentage of the invoice value that you your client owes you £100 which will raise. Therefore you need some form of finance cover the repayment of the bank to cover the payments until the client borrowing. This can be anywhere from 0.08% to 1.5% pays you. of turnover that is factored, depending on In week 4 the bank receive £100 from your what you expect your turnover to be. This is where Factoring steps in: client. They take £90 of it straight away to get the So what is Factoring? money back they lent you. This leaves £10 remaining that is yours. Factoring is the bank (in our case, Lloyds Commercial Finance) lending you money WORDS TO UNDERSTAND Or to look at in its simplest form : against your sales invoices. Service Charge Usually this advance is up to 90% of You raised a £100 invoice which you invoice value. Drawdown received £90 up front and £10 when the client pays. Discount The factoring company then collect the money from your clients due on the Disallowed invoices and this is how they get their Avaliable Funds money back. This releases the final amount due to you which is the remaining 10% of the invoice that you have not received yet. The higher the turnover the lower the An example %age as Lloyds will earn more from higher turnover businesses. Joe Bloggs works for a week at Temp Client Ltd – We will call this week 1 However, don’t think you can just say you’ll do high turnover and get a lower The following Monday Joe Bloggs submits %age as they impose what they call a his timesheet to you and expects to be minimum service charge. paid his wages of £90 that Friday – we will call this week 2. This is a set amount that they will charge as a minimum regardless of the value of Still in week 2, you raise an invoice of £100 the invoices they raise. to your client for the supply of Joe Bloggs. “When you need to get your hands on So your great idea of saying you will raise You are one of the lucky ones and your the money....” £1million in the first year to lower your6
  • %age means you will be hit with a far Once logged in you will be presented with Funded – This is the total value of invoiceshigher minimum service charge and the my account screen that Lloyds expect to receive from youractually be worse off! clients. This gives you a summary of your wholeBut don’t think of the minimum as an factoring account. (Fig 1) So this is what they base the total fundingadditional charge on top of the Service figure that they will advance you on.charge. So lets work through the figures in the top half first So in our earlier example this would beYou pay one or the other, depending £100 giving a total allowed funding of £90which one is higher. Fig 1 IP – This just shows the“Discount” agreed percentage figure that Lloyds will advance onThis is really the interest charge for that we discussed earlierborrowing money and is the term usedby Lloyds. Current Account – This is your current borrowingsLooking back at our example, you from Lloyds. It is an ongoingborrowed £90 from week 2 until week 4 figure that increases orwhen the client paid. decreases.The factoring company will charge you So when Lloyds give youinterest on that £90 from week 2 till week funds against the invoices4. this figure increases (because your borrowings from LloydsSSG can arrange a meeting with Lloyds increase)for you and you will get a full quote thatwill outline all charges that you will pay When your Clients make afor the factoring facility. payment to Lloyds this decreases as you areUsing the Facility TOP TIP! borrowing less. Passwords changeWhen you actually use a factoring facility monthly on CashCon- nect so try to use Total available at start ofyour main contact with Lloyds will be numerical ones (01, day – The current account isthrough their web portal – 02 etc..) what is owed to However, Lloyds will advanceYou will be given your own unique login up to 90% of the Fundedand will be presented with information balance.that is unique to you and is all theinformation as to what is happening in Gross Debtors – This is the value of your If the Current account is below that figureyour factoring account. invoices that have not been paid to Lloyds then there are additional funds available yet. to borrow.It is here that you can “draw down” funds,see what your customers owe, see what So looking at our example earlier this This is what is known as the availabilityyou owe Lloyds, etc. figure would show £100 in week 2 and shown in this box.Let’s take a look and explain the When invoices are paid by your clients this It is calculated as follows :important areas and what they mean. figure reduces and when invoices are raised by you, it increases. Funded multiplied by IP %age Disapproved/capped – If a client says that an invoice will not be paid, or if a The result of this is the total available to be customer is over their credit limit then borrowed. Lloyds will not advance against these as they do not expect to get the money back. This total less the Current account (Current borrowings) gives you the So any figure in these will need to be remaining availability. looked at. And as a result Lloyds reduce it from the Using our example at the beginning : Gross Debtors to arrive at the funded “Cash is King!” figure. An invoice was raised for £100. 7
  • This would have shown in the gross debtors as £100 in week 2 and made the July funded figure £100. BLAST OFF! 2012 This would have created an availability in week 2 or £90. Home Counties Hero! Generalist Recruitment with a specialist twist! Lloyds advanced £90 to you in week 2 No CV Blasting here, which would have had 2 effects. just a great job with genuine focus RISE IN TEMPORARY ROLES The Current account would have & care is a sector ENCOURAGING FOR RECRUITERS increased by £90 (as you have borrowed better known Employers are increasingly turning to this amount) and the availability would for volume & recruitment businesses to provide temporary, have gone down to 0 as you have complaints! flexible workers to fill vacancies against the borrowed all you can. challenging business backdrop, enabling For more info, contact: firms to increase or decrease headcount in line with fluctuations in trading. In week 4 – When the client has paid their invoice the following would happen. The number of job vacancies available through recruitment companies continued to rise in July – albeit at a more modest Gross debtors would have decreased to 0 pace than previous months – particularly in as the £100 was paid. the engineering, construction and medical sectors, according to the latest REC/KPMG This would give a funded of 0 which July Report on Jobs. means that the Current account can only BLAST OFF! 2012 Conditions remain stable for young be 0 at its highest. recruitment businesses, particularly Young Gun shooting for specialists operating in resilient vertical However, the current account which was sectors, to realise their growth potential. South Coast Success! £90 would be decreased by £100 which Our Recruiter may only However, access to working capital to pay means it would become negative £10. be 25,but he has drive temporary workers, and the significant enthusiasm & a great administrative burden associated with As a result the availability would be would mental attitude. candidate and client management, can leave directors’ with their heads down in day to be £10 as the current account is actually Coupled with just over day activities, rather than above the parapet showing £10 due to you. 2 yrs of Technical focusing on expansion. Recruitment skills, SSG is happy to Cash Friday, the outsourced payroll finance So that is the overview. service from Lloyds TSB Commercial back this chap all the way Finance’s Recruitment Finance division, But how do you get at that money?! For more info, contact: comprises payroll management, a factoring facility and a credit insurance policy, and is well suited to remedying these issues. The Drawdown Payroll funding addresses the tasks which ensure temps are paid correctly and on Drawdown is the request of funds from time, whilst being compliant with tax and the factoring account to your business data protection legislation. Alternatively a bank account. factoring facility advances up to 90 per cent July of issued invoices, to make funds available This is registered at the amount in Fig 1. BLAST OFF! 2012 to reinvest in growth, while credit insurance covers businesses against losses due to unpaid accounts receivable. Sea Front Recruitment! The factoring account is not a bank How lucky is our latest The challenging market means that it is more account. Entrepreneurial Recruiter? important than ever for recruiters to position Living with the Devon themselves to capitalise on emerging growth You can’t make payments to other people beach literally on her opportunities. doorstep, this is a from it. fabulous opportunity to To learn more speak to our advisors on combine all of the All you can do is request to borrow money benefits of running a 0800 55 00 22 or visit that is accessible in the availability figure. business with looking after 2 young Once requested the money will show in children - did I mention STUART TALBOT living on the beach? Head of the Recruitment Finance Division your business bank account. For more info, contact: of Lloyds TSB Commercial Finance So when you require funds you enter the figure required in the amount box.8
  • You will then need to decide what Daily change report (Fig 2) Credit rating amendment – This showspayment method you require. This is the any changes in the credit ratings given byamount box (Fig 1) This gives you lots of information on Lloyds for any of your clients in the period what has changed on your account on aBut please be aware daily basis. Reconciled – Thisof the following shows payments Fig 2 received from yourThere is a 3:30 pm cut clients and whatoff to request funds invoices they werevia BACS but this reconciled with inmethod is free of the periodcharge. Cash Received –A BACS transfer takes TOP TIP! This just shows the3 working days to actual cashshow in your bank ALWAYS Check received in the Individual Clientaccount. credit limits against period their outstandingThere is a 10:30am cut balances New Customeroff point to request a details – ThisCHAPS and there is a shows any newcharge for this c u s t o m e r smethod of payment. submitted toHowever a CHAPS transfer will show in You will first see that there are date Lloyds in the periodyour bank account the same day. ranges so you can look at different Reassignment - this shows any invoices periods. that have been reassignedTo view previous drawdown paymentsmade just click on the last 10 payments Select the period you want and click So there is a lot of information there.icon and they will show. (Fig 1) Load report But the most important is cash received.The front page shows a summary of your This will bring up a host of other You need to know when payments areaccount. information that you can access for the being made to keep track on your period in question debtors.We shall now look at some of the otherpages (accessed by the menu’s at the side) Fig 3that you will look at in the course ofrunning the factoring account.You can find more information eon Factoring at the following k/ The slower your customers pay the k/ Clie Summary – This is the front page Client the discount charge as you are borrowinginvoice-finance- - tha I have explained above but for the that for longer so it is good practice to keepsolutions/factoring/ ring/ day in selected (Fig 2) days your own checks on outstanding invoices.Or contact me, Disapproval – This shows any invoices This leads us to look at how you look at DisDarren Hulbert on disapproved in the period dis what invoices are outstanding by01442 200961. customer. Payment Advice – This is any This page is accessed by selecting PayYou can also email me ail drawdowns paid in the period dra Customer on the left hand side menu thendarren@supportservices tservices customer list on any Schedule acknowledgement – This Sch shows totals for your sales invoices It does what it says on the tin – it gives a shoI look forward to hearing raised and submitted to Lloyds in the customer list. (Fig 3) raisfrom you! period. per It also includes estimated charges on those invoices cha However, it is not just a list of names, it 9
  • it also gives the customer’s credit limit, the There are a number of other areas to J JOKER! £50 balance outstanding, any disapproved explore on cashconnect but they are for Angela from Manchester values and over credit limit values. another day. Q: Driving up the motorway, my boss phoned me & told me Id been promoted. He Any element of information on Feel free to check them out yourself. then made me director and I went right off into a tree. cashconnect that is underlined means A: The police came and asked that you can click on it for further One last word of warning. g me what had happened. I information. said I careered off the road" WINNER! Lloyds may not use old fashion methods So if you click on the customer name, you of communication like the telephone if will get address, contact details, last they have a query. payment date and any diary notes of interaction with the client that Lloyds The whole point of having this online have had. portal is that is gives you all the information you need in real time and J JOKER! £50 If you click on the balance figure it will Michael from Lodnon online. Q: What do you see when you show all the invoices that make up that look into a Recruitment figure. Consultants eyes? Therefore do please keep a regular eye on A: The back of his head More importantly these are invoices that the memo tab (Fig 4) your client hasn’t paid yet. Clicking on this then memo List brings up WINNER! Looking at this screen also raises the new a list of items that Lloyds want to area of Client Credit limits. communicate to you. When a new 30 ventures in 2012 SSG has launched client is DID YOU KNOW?.... Fig 4 entered on cashconnect Lloyds will only fund a g a i n s t invoices to TOP TIP! that client up ALWAYS Check the to a certain amount. memo section for unread memos This is the Credit Limit. July While a client’s outstanding invoices with BLAST OFF! 2012 you are below that credit limit any new If you miss these you may miss some vital invoices will increase your availability as information. normal. Nowt grim about up North! But don’t fear, If you have some unread Yet another great However, if a client goes over their credit memos it also tells you on the front page Commercial recruitment limit then any further invoices will go in in the bottom left hand corner. venture based out of the capped figure and have no effect on Newcastle! the funded figure so do not increase your Super Star Recruiter availability. with a great accent and 10yrs of local This means you are not getting funding experience. on those invoices until the client pays so This just has to could have an adverse effect on your work! cashflow. For more info, contact: So credit limits are an important area to keep an eye on. So the customer list is quite important as J JOKER! £50 it lets you know what is happening with “Need Help? Luke from Herts Q: Why did the Recruitment each customer and assists in giving you Consultant scale the chain Give Darren a call link fence? the information you need to chase your clients. A: To see what was on the other side So now you have all the information in If you would like to get any further info front of you and a new understanding of please feel free to contact me on 01442 WINNER! how factoring works. 20096110
  • Girls, Girls, Girls!Never mind the Spice Girls,Female Recruiterslead the way!It might shame the boys to have to admit Read the national press, scour the tradeit but the Girls are winning so far in 2012! press or just talk to any sensible Recruiter & you will hear the same stories rehashedBearing in mind that approximately 50% one way or another. It isn’t good, thingsof all SSG client recruiters are female, they are tough and every day seems to Is it a Happy 2012?seem to be making more than 50% of the generate a new of all SSG Ventures since the startof the Olympic Year! The major players in the recruitment Same meat – different gravy! market are not making any more money –Is it the Jessica Ennis effect? Are we all we are seeing profits warnings, cut backs, OK – let’s focus on some of the obviousmore likely to work with the fairer sex redundancy notices or (again, at best) a indicators of how start-up recruiters andthan the boys or are female Recruiters just ‘reallocation of resources’ from the likes of their businesses are managing (asbetter? What can the little ladies teach us Robert Walters, Hays, Michael Page etc reflected by the SSG Experience!)big butch blokes?! Look further down the food chain with Applications The Trends since the independents and we see a similar story but with a slighter less pessimistic January 2012 outlook – things are ‘ok’, the outlook Since January 2012, SSG has registered a decrease in qualified Recruiters wantingOn a global basis, things are no better are remains ‘stable’ and the numbers seem to launch a new business. This is not athey? August is likely to be the same as fairly ‘predictable’. massive decrease but it is noticeable – aJanuary and February was not any tangible reduction in numbers (both indifferent to March whilst April seemed like absolute terms but also on a comparativeMay and June to me! basis). Work in theEvery news bulletin is (at best) cautious It would appear that Recruiters feel lessand usually fairly miserable. The Euro is Moment...... keen to take the plunge right now. Is this asinking, the unemployment numbers reflection of the market or is it just toughsoaring and the Sovereign dangers seem luck on SSG?determined to remain. And then right down in the dirt fightingNo one appears to be making the right for every penny and working hard to win Launchesmoves to solve this ‘perfect storm’ of any business ..... The battling Recruitment The numbers are solid – no change sinceeconomic woe & as individuals there Start-Up venture! the start of the year and in fact a littlewould seem to be little we can do to better than in 2011 and in 2010. In otherchange anything – the best that we can So, what about us? How are things since words, SSG is launching more businessesdo is to work in the moment – just go with January 2012? Are things getting better or than we have done in the first 6 months ofthe flow and not get too ambitious. worse? Any lessons to learn – apart from 2011 and 2010, but to be frank, that in the fact that it seems more profitable to itself is not much to shout about. be a girl than it is to be a boy! £ After all, is the quality going to be as good or just a skew of the curve? After all, if we MO Let’s look at the SSG KPIs are launching the same number of NTH S Just like you guys, SSG works to a number businesses but working with fewer of KPIs (you do work with KPIs don’t you?). applications, are we just lowering the bar? Revenues You guys might talk about interviews, offers and placements – whilst we focus Ok – here is a definite trend! on Business Launches, Revenues per Overall revenues per venture remain 2012 is going great for the girls! Venture, Expansion Rates and the like. almost the same (or ‘stagnant’ if you want 11
  • to be miserable or ‘robust’ if you want to be optimistic!). Girls won, Boys......lost! But, (& if you are a boy, you may want to 2012 look away now!), the girls are doing better – about 20% better in fact. SSG revenues from the boys are down. Legal Disputes What this KPI evidence seems to highlight is that as Recruiters we are almost too SSG Revenues from the girls are up. The optimistic! Perhaps we really do talk a Up, up & up! net result is the same. better game than we play? Maybe we No doubt here guys! 2012 has seen need to be a little more pessimistic – more So, the big question is really ‘what are the another increase in the number of legal prudent on our outlook. girls doing that the boys are not?’ disputes our ventures are involved in. Not only is the actual number rising but the progression of the actual dispute is going What about the Girls? further than they have traditionally done. This is the really interesting bit! The Girls make more money, In other words, more and more start up The girls are doing better – there is no seem to work Recruitment Ventures are being forced doubt about that. They seem to have into going to court to get their fees paid. suffered less and prospered more. harder & chat more! Expansion In other words, for those Recruiters who have suffered (seen their revenues Ah ha! At last – a rare taste of good news! actually fall in 2012 from the same period Business Failures in 2011) they seem to have suffered less. Although I need to add a caveat or two, Another miserable face I am sorry to say. there have been significantly more cases For those Recruiters who have prospered of expansion during the first six months of (i.e. seen their revenues increase in 2012 For nine years (since our launch in 2003) 2012 than there has been in either 2011 or from the same period in 2011) they seem we know that 1 in every 6 businesses SSG 2010. to have prospered more. launch with an eager fresh faced Recruiter will ‘fail’ (or more nicely put, the Recruiter The most significant caveat which I need Here are a few facts for you: will decide to do something ‘different’). to add is that this expansion has come more from well established ventures ‘Female Revenues’ now account for Since the start of 2012 and indeed looking which launched prior to 2010 than it has 61% of all SSG Revenues. back 12 months and even 18 months) that from Recruiters who set up in the last 18 number is slighter higher. months. ‘Female Revenues’ in 2012 are up 9% on the same period of 2011. Not so high that most analysts would What this suggests is that it has been more difficult to establish a foothold in ‘Female Revenues’ in 2012 are up advocate jumping off a tall building, but 11% on the same period of 2010. enough to make a reasonable Recruiter the market since the financial meltdown start to wonder why? It is tougher and of 2009 and onwards. I guess we would all ‘Male Revenues’ now account for again the boys are fairing less well. The know that anyway! 39% of all SSG Revenues. boys seem more susceptible to calling it a ‘Male Revenues’ in 2012 are down day than the girls do. Overall, the KPI view is that things are just as tough now as they have been in the 4% on the same period of 2011. Bad Debts recent past. It would appear that there has ‘Male Revenues’ in 2012 are down been no real improvement in 2012 and 7% on the same period of 2010. Yet another misery statistic! that we are flat lining at best! Of the 19 Ventures who have expanded their team in 2012, 12 Yep, you have guessed it – our ventures (& are owned by women. therefore SSG) are suffering more than we have with bad debts. More ‘’placed’’ Of the 5 Ventures who have ‘called candidates are not working to the end of a se it a day’ since January 2012, 4 were Ca s r t ion rebate period (damnation!) & more end BAD ou licat C p owned by the boys! DE Ap clients are failing to cough up on their BT S legitimate recruitment invoices. Another interesting set of facts relate to the type of recruitment which our Again, please don’t reach for the sleeping fabulous girls work in: pills just yet, but it is interesting that the bad debt numbers have crawled their way up for three consecutive years (2010, 2011 2012 has seen a BIG 74% of Female Revenues come and so far in 2012). increase in bad debts from PERM recruitment12
  • 56% of Male Revenues come aggressive or more determined, but and take their time to do the right thing, from PERM recruitment seemingly very focussed and able to not just to make a quick buck. concentrate on new business and revenue The average invoice value of earning opportunities. Process Driven Female PERM Revenue is just under £3,200 compared with SSG notice that the girls are always The girls have a plan and they stick to it! an average of £2,650 for the available – whatever the time of day. They boys. are sat at their desks or out on call. They This is not about being inflexible; this isSo, the girls maintain higher PERM fees are working, ready to talk and are about being focussed and process driven.than the boys since 2012 started and they obviously ‘out there’ doing ‘it’. The girls are not reliant upon inspirationalmake more of their money in the PERM recruitment but work hard against a clearmarket than the boys. The girls want to discuss how things are plan. going, they seem to want to canvassThis seems to support the clear opinions and contribute to conversations, It may take the girls longer to get going,recruitment market trend of lowering debates and The Dark Side. but once they start making money theyTEMP revenues and stable PERM fees. In seem to do it better!other words, it seems less difficult to makea PERM fee than it does to generate the Work Smartsame TEMP revenues. The TEMP market is Girls work hard & consistentlyharder & is contracting a little whilst the The girls don’t appear to work any longerPERM market is robust Girls build lasting relationships hours than the boys – indeed the impression that SSG has is that the girlsMore facts about girls Up-North: Girls make 61% of SSG revenues are usually responsible for things other than ‘just recruitment‘ (kids, shopping, They are (on average) nearly 25% Girls talk, listen and engage chores) but somehow manage to get it all more successful than their done. northern male equivalent! Do the girls work smarter or are they just Fees north of Birmingham have grown by around 10% for the girls so busy that they can’t waste time? but not shifted for the boys. Hard Working ToolsWhat about Down South? There is an almost tangible feeling of Ok guys, you might hate this but it seemsx Girls are not more successful than commitment from the girls. Running a the boys. recruitment business seems a very serious process for the girls – this is not simply that the girls make better use of the tools which are available to them via SSG! The boys are just as successful as about not wanting to work for someone More girls engage with SSG than not. the girls! else. They want to do well and seem More girls utilise some of the business determined to work hard, put in the hours tools than do not & more girls ask for helpWhy are the Girls doing better? and try every angle to make more money. than do not.Well, we have some theories of course, but Of course it is hard to be too empirical Big favourites include:it is impossible to be too definite for a here, but the girls really do seem to workmillion reasons; including harder ?? The KPI Tool Kit SSG might use be lucky that the Humility The Cash Flow Tool Kit girlie ventures are particularly It is very clear that the vast majority of the The Vacancy Spider good. female recruiters working with SSG are The Online Assessment product The boys might be unlucky right demonstratively humble! If they don’t now. know something, they come forward and The Business Strategy meetings with say so. If there is something which is SSG It is market led and the girls unclear, they seek clarity. happen to operate in more So, what is the advice then? buoyant markets. There is no bravado about it – just a tendency to want to know what they If you are girl and don’t feel that you are Luck may well be a factor. need to do to make more money and be doing better in 2012 than you were in more successful. Very impressive! 2011, then the advice to you is probably the same as it is to the boys!But, what have we noticed about thegirls? Relationships Focus Engage with SSG - talk to us, meet Most of our female clients seem to benefit with us and discuss ideas with us. WeOf course it is hard to be too empirical from ‘repeat business’. They work with may not know everything of coursehere, but the girls really do seem to be a smaller client numbers but in a more but we do hear a lot of great ideasfocussed bunch. Not necessarily more focussed way – they build relationships from a lot of great Recruiters. 13
  • Don’t be a stranger - get out & about. Talk to your customers, clients, candidates. Better to chat for a few minutes on the phone than it is to watch Jeremy Kyle! Make the most of SSG - use the Boys tools available. There are a lot of Might! things you can do to feel more in control of your business. Don’t wait for the Monthly Management Accounts to arrive - think about what is available to you and use it! Keep going - without effort there is really no hope! Yes, it is hard and certainly none of us has had it easy for a long time. But there are numerous examples of Recruiters doing well and building for the future – most of them just happen to be girls!! Dark 30k Basic 50% Equity! Dark NOVEMBER DIRECTOR DESIGNATE (x2) SEPTEMBER 2011 ww P in PhD JANUARY 2011 2012 ww 45k + Bonus + 10% Equity Herts base for E Entrepreneurship w. the Nr. Heathrow w. the The Opportunity of 2011 a GREAT Recruiter See Page 2 for Details Page 18 for Details Happy New Year?.... Sometimes Fancy a PhD in it’s hard to Entrepreneurship? See Page 12 keep up with How to escape the everything ........ 2012 doom & gloom (page 13) Inside this issue: Inside this issue: Banks take a bashing Be a VIDEO Star! Selling Up! Part 1 Is AWR Evil? Corporation Tax Basics Inside this issue: Google+ Exposed! The Death of Cold Calling? Selling Up! Part Deux : 3 Ways to SYOB Start Your Own Business Develop a Press Release : Clare is serious (again) Time to Sell Up? Who Owns YOUR Contacts? Meet SSG’s New Girl : Making the most of SKYPE Very Feb BLAST OFF! August BLAST OFF! October BLAST OFF! Soon BLAST OFF! 2012 R N 2011 2011 R N ENGINEERING AND RTR ? COMMERCIAL AND FS Your Best Friend You from Home! ? Bob made the break and he Great New Partnership formed by Experienced Recruiters looking to E Unusual combination of Engineering recruitment with a side dish of RTR work! This is a Happy, content & safe in the knowledge that whatever you E is doing well. You try to be pleased for him of course, but as Morrisey exploit their combined 10 years of Perm’ based Commercial and X business led by a Recruiter with acheive will be for you and your family. Never did the phrase ‘work for X might sing ‘we hate it when our U lots of experience and lots of friends are successful’.Tough to U Financial services experience. someone else’ sound so silly, you’re Clients are UK based with a focus on salaries up to £50k T frustration about having worked for someone else for too long! motivated & progressing your life Why not call David on T watch. It should have been you. Why not call ‘The Samaritans’ For more info, contact: For more info, contact: 01442 200944 to chat through or Bob (ask him for a job?) how to break free Dark Company car?........ Dark 2012 SEPTEMBER ww JUNE 2012 ww WANTT w. the TO KNOW Is it worth it? w. the WHY? National Why the Girls ‘r’ winning! SEE OR Unwelcome Cost to your recenteditions business? PAGE - see Page 16 - 11 It’s all here!! Secrets, Lies & Hard Work! Inside this issue: Inside this issue: LinkedIn ‘TAGS’ National Inside this issue: Inside this issue: Job Board Branding! What’s New Pussy Cat? Spam, Spam, Spam Still Frustrated Email on my iPhone Girls, Girls, Girls Factoring Who? The ‘30 UP’ Club The Power of Three! Lots of Flashes Stress Test! Clare & A Few “Myths” The Power of Three! Dark On the .. Dark Dark Love SSG? ... 2012 FEBRUARY ww 2012 ww MARCH 2012 APRIL ww Then make Couc h w. the SSG w. the w. the SSG it Pay! - see Page 20 - Page 6 The Power of Th Three! At Coping Forecasting Last! OK? the Future ... Some We’ll see ... Bright ideas! On the .. ... Inside this issue: Couc h Selling up! Part 3 (of 5) Worthwhile PR Strategy Page 6 ... of your Cash Flow Tool Kit Hello from Lloyds Business? Pa Page 28 8 BRANDING FOR YOU MORE, MORE, MORE! Inside this issue: Inside this issue: Inside this issue: Inside this issue: • Professional Presenter • New Client Launches Clare’s Apprentices On the Couch! On the Couch £20,000 Challenge! • Online Video • Free Training Resources Cash Flow Toolkit! Selling Up! Pt 4 The Budget & You CIS - CI What? • Professional Director • SSG Client Discount Chris goes all DIY The Power of Three! Get Some Funding! Sell, Sell, Sell Pt. 5 The Power of Three! The best iPhone App’s14
  • What’s New Congratulations building to services Pussy Cat? recruitment agency, Arco – a long-standing relationship with a major household named client enabled Joe to not only get onto its PSL but to gain the coveted Tier One position which means that they are managing a number of agencies within the recruitment process (including one very close to Joe!). We were delighted to be able to offer help and support during this process and are really Breaking News ..... chuffed for Arco that it has all paid off. On the strength of this massive It’s amazing what goes on out there in ‘SSG achievement, Arco are able to Client-Land’! expand again and move into new offices. Here are a few snippets of news from around Congratulations to the the ‘network’. energetic and tenacious commercial agency, High end e-commerce Exec Engineers has Smart10, who continue to thrive – retail agency, Barnes benefitted from an they have taken on another new Frank have moved into injection of cash into the recruit and have entered into anew offices in Manchester and business which has enabled it to joint venture with a coaching andhave expanded by taking on a move into new offices and recruit training consultant to add to theirresourcer (plus a ‘therapeutic dog’) an extra team member with plans increasingly diverse offering. Never– we were able to offer advice on for more additions to headcount able to stand still, the company hasthe lease and have been delighted before the end of 2012 – we wish put in place initiatives such asto see the before and after photos Stewart and his growing team awards nights, charityas Gareth and his team have every success in the engineering sponsorships and even a zumbaworked their decorating magic!. space. evening to increase their profile within the market. We were delighted to be asked and pleased to be Smart 10 win the award Commercial retail able to support long this month for taking on company, Unico hasestablished agency, Rapid Staff, in the VAT man and getting successfully launcheda recent tendering process. Fingers an apology out of them – we hope onto the scene with a fantasticcrossed that this all works out for you have got that framed! (although we do say it ourselves!)Ade and his team. website, offices and an expanding team – we wish Lesley and the Some great collaboration Lots of questions on team every success. going on between restrictive covenants this ventures this month, month – as always, our Congratulations toranging from split fee possibilities advice is to abide by all post- international ITto sharing of temp assignments, contractual restrictions. There are recruitment company,working together really does work! quite a number of ventures adding Cirro IT on their launch –Glad that we were able to facilitate team members and it is worth operating in the UK and Norway,this for Multitrades, The remembering that a Venture may this agency will offer a nicheEdinburgh Recruitment Agency be liable if the new recruit is in solution to their clients – we wishand Unico. breach. them every success. 15
  • Congratulations to Congratulations to Positively the last mention commercial recruitment Barnes Frank who has of, Barnes Frank – we agency with a distinctly managed to secure the couldn’t let this issue go Irish flavour Eireann Personnel highest fee (so far!) of any single without publishing a photo of the who are making a move into the deal in 2012. A nervous couple of amazing wonder loo that Gareth temp market. This long established weeks before the start date ahead has installed in his new agency has been extremely of them, but so far so good! Manchester Office – an successful in weathering the fall Bizarrely, Barnes Frank also wins eco-warrior’s dream! out from the recession and this the award for the strangest reason latest strategic move will only for a candidate dropping out – mean good things to come for they didn’t want to work with dead Anna. people! Recruitment Process o o! Outsourcing specialists, HAVE M agic L Igloo (we have always loved the name of that agency!) have opened an education branch YOUR and recruited a heavyweight SHOUT! recruiter to manage that area of the business – we wish Louise and Newsworthy items her team the very best of luck in Welcomed by this important growth phase of the Fantastic news for Oxford company! Recruitment who move into prestigious offices in HR professional Oxford as we go to press. We wish recruitment company, Satarah took advantage Congratulations to high Elisa and her growing team all the of the referral scheme we have in flying agency, Talent on great success that they deserve. place and available to all of our Board who have made a ventures – as a result of Esther’s hard work , we now have a new flying start to their business (if you pardon the pun) – based in Some Nappy Venture to support and Satarah prestigious offices in Luton, earned a nice fee! perfectly positioned for the airport, this wonderful partnership Congratulations to new has an infectious enthusiasm that agency with the very we believe will ensure that their trendy name of Recruit business does great things. Mint who have made a solid start to their industrial and commercial News to celebrate! We are delighted to business in Peterborough - having announce the other new moved in to offices and been companies that we are in Congratulations to retail inundated with business, this the process of launching onto the agency JJH Consulting, who company is set to grow very market - Technical Consultancy, have a new young quickly – one to watch we think! CDC Technical, Healthcare consultant in the form of Relatively new Specialists, Octo Staffing and Baby Archie – we look recruitment agency, Which Doctor and Niche graduate forward to helping him Digitive, operating in the recruitment agency, Graduatis are develop some KPIs! digital and creative sector has all in the Launch phases of their taken the bold step of making a development - We look forward to quick hiring decision – we applaud continuing to support these Did you know?....... the risk taking quality and wish fantastic businesses as they Chris and his new recruit every undertake their first steps in the 8,000 Recruiters receive this success as they build the business. stages of growth. ...........16
  • Employment Law I AM THE MYTH BUSTER! (No, really I am!) I am aWe all love a bit of gossip don’t we? formed once an employee accepts a job ‘MYTH offer (and this is worth noting if you ever BUSTER’Nothing quite like speculating about what need to withdraw an offer as an employerpeople are up to or what Recruiter is or you work with a client who does) and ithoping to leave which firm and start up continues for the duration of theon their own. employment.Myths are great – Pegasus, Troy, an The contract of employment is, in effect,England World Cup win. the relationship between the employer Clare admitted that a stunt “Myth and employee: the employee carries out Buster” may have been used in thisBut what about some of the nonsense we work for the employer in exchange for image....all hear about Employment Law? something good – i.e money! out terms and conditions in writing.You know what I mean – the rubbish we The fact that this is not in writing does notall hear about who can get away with mean that there is no contractual While it is possible to agree terms verbally,what and who got in trouble for doing relationship. this creates uncertainty and leaves bothwhatever. you and the employee in a difficult Just because it is not in writing doesn’t position if a dispute arises about rightsNow, obviously, quite a few of ‘our guys’ mean also that the employee has no and obligations under the contract.are Employers and as anyone will confirm, rights – (unfair dismissal, redundancythe law in this area is ever changing and payments, unlawful discrimination). In addition, as recruitment businesses,sometimes completely baffling! you will want to protect your business Nor does it mean that employers can alter from competition and misuse ofThis, coupled with seemingly never terms and conditions without risking confidential information and these reallyending cases being heard in Tribunals and being in breach of contract. do need to be in writing – it is not a goodcourts and the ‘bloke in the pub said’ or idea to hope that a judge will imply them‘my friend who knows these things said’ or To complicate matters more, even if the into your contract later on down the line.‘at my old company we did it differently’ contract is in writing but perhaps some Myth 2:type statements mean that there are a terms haven’t been covered, they can benumber of urban myths surrounding binding even if they are not in writing. ‘’We have a contract but it was neveremployment contracts and redundancy signed therefore it isn’t valid’’which we thought it worth trying to If it ever gets this far, the court or tribunaldebunk. will create the terms by looking at the Debunking Bottom Line: It is! how the employer and employeeMyth 1: behaved – what happened on a day to Where the employer has issued a written day basis- just because it quacks doesn’t contract of employment but neither you‘’We never put anything in writing so make it a duck kind of principle! or the employee or one of you only hasthere is no employment contract’’ signed it, you both will continue to be Terms may also be put into a contract bound by the terms of the contract if youDebunking Bottom Line: There is! through the employers custom have worked in accordance with it. and practice, industry standardsIt is a common misconception that, where or common Law (i.e. cases Myth 3:there is nothing in writing to confirm the that go through the courtsrelationship between an employer and and create precedence) ‘’An employer cannot withdraw a jobemployee, the employee does not have a offer once it has been made’’.contract of employment. We would always advise you as employers to set I am a Debunking Bottom Line: Yes they can ‘MYTHFrom there, it is easy to assume that where BUSTER’ but it may be costly!there is nothing in writing and an It is a scenario that we dread as recruitersemployer wants to dismiss an employee MYTH NO. 1 of course but what if you find yourself inor change their working arrangements, “Nothing is in writing, so we the situation of having made an offer to apay or benefits, they can do so without do not have an Employment new recruiter and they have resigned,any repercussions because there is Contract!” have a new pencil case and everythingnothing in writing. VERDICT: RUBBISH and you decide that actually you simplyHowever, a contract of employment is cannot take them on. 17
  • Employers often think that they have to NEXT STEPS: go through with it once they have made an offer of employment. If you want to talk through these issues or any This is not necessarily the case. Employment Law related stuff, you know where I am If circumstances change so that you no (if you don’t my Lawyer will!) I am a longer require an individuals services, ‘MYTH BUSTER’ you can withdraw the offer of employment. MYTH NO. 3 However, the consequences of it doing so “Once an offer is made, it can’t depend on whether or not the be taken back” prospective employee has already VERDICT: RUBBISH Why Running Temps accepted the employers offer of is getting harder employment. & is worth less! If the prospective employee has not Even more exciting than these myths will accepted the offer of employment, no be the ones that we look at next time. What a crazy, exciting World Law is.... employment contract exists. In this case, if you want to withdraw the Any cat about town will tell you that job offer, simply write to him or her things have changed since the heady explaining the change in circumstances days of Summer 2008. Combine all the above ingredients with the eggs, sesame seeds and tumeric Pop them in the fridge for 5 hrs (so they don’t fall apart when you cook Grate the carrot & courgette, chop the onions, crush the garlic & set aside Mix together well, then take a small amount of mixture and roll into balls and make it clear that you are Wash the lentils and chickpeas then give them a short blast in a blender Back then, all a moggy could think about withdrawing the offer of employment. was ‘Cat Nip’ & Bankers Bonus payments, Comfort Food for Fed-up Recruiters but with the Lehman Brothers induced If the prospective employee has accepted meltdown, even a saucer of warm milk Roast the pine nuts for a short while until they are golden Coat the balls in breadcrumbs and place on a baking tray your job offer, a contract of employment has begun to taste a little sour! has come into force between you and Then cook them in some really hot oil, until brown them. The issue for us Temp’ Based recruiters (& yes, I do specialise in placing temps’ – This means that the withdrawal of the job why is that so strange?) is that over the offer will constitute a breach of contract, last three years or so two things are true: even if the individual has not commenced work with you. 1. There are less Temp’ Vacancies & 2. In real terms, the cost of running As soon as you withdaw the job offer, the Temps has risen. prospective employee will be entitled to Enjoy.... Yummy! There is no question that Companies be paid for the notice that they The How: have adopted a much more cautious would have received in the them) approach to hiring of course but event of starting work and paradoxically, it is the Temp side of things then being dismissed. which has suffered more than the Perm’. 1 Can of Brown Lentils, 2 Cans of Chickpeas This would normally be a It seems very little to do with the AWR week or two at the most initiative or the supply side of things - it is I am a (hopefully!) ‘MYTH much more apparent than employers Vegetarian Patties : BUSTER’ 1 Large Carrot, 1 Courgette A pinch of Tumeric Powder view the margins charged on Temps’ as Handful of Sesame Seeds Table spoon of Olive Oil having been excessive and have Handful of Pine Nuts 2 cups Breadcrumbs MYTH NO. 2 gradually moved towards hiring 2 Cloves of Garlic Permanent employees rather than Temp “I never signed my contract, staff. The What: 2 Onions so it does not apply” 2 Eggs VERDICT: RUBBISH At the same time, the banking crisis has made the cost of running Temps much more of an issue that it used to be for the Recruiter. Factoring costs are sky high If you don’t pay, then you may find and even if you are ‘lucky enough’ to get yourself on the end of a breach of contract a factoring deal, the providers are case. clamping down on the supply of cash to Pop’s Pantry pay the temps (setting much tougher It gets complicated where you may have credit control targets and ‘disallowing’ made a conditional offer of employment, much more debt). (e.g an offer subject to you receiving satisfactory references or the prospective Bottom line is that if I were a kitten just employee passing a medical check) and starting out on my own again, I might that condition is not satisfied, the contract avoid Temps altogether and just place Perms – it seems to be a little easier and a is not formed and the employer is able to lot less costly. withdraw it’s offer of employment without being in breach of contract18
  • Recruitment can be stressful! Do you pass the Stress Test? Background I often have little bruises, headaches or sore throatsNo doubt about it, ‘times is hard’! We’ve I enjoy doing several things at oncetalked about the economy and the effecton the employment market and how I think it’s always best to expect the I sometimes feel that I don’t makerecruiters are managing to keep going. If worst myself stand outyou missed it, you can find this update onpage 28 of the May issue of The Dark Side. I find it difficult to concentrate when I like my rituals and habits other people are talkingTo recap, the UK Recruitment market is I need to know what’s going on, to My phone rings constantlygiving mixed signals. Less vacancies, stay informed and in touchcaution from within the larger corporate I haven’t moved house much duringorganisations but more start-up I often think to myself ‘I should have’ my adult liferecruitment businesses. Many recruiters or ‘if I could have...’are relying on their instincts. Which, as we Planning calms me downall know, can be both challenging and I find it hard to deal with indifferencestressful. I’m more likely to put my head down and work for the future than to enjoy I’m as aware of what is unspoken as life one day at a time what is said I would rather be less dependent on other people’s opinions I admire people who can drop everything to pursue their dreams I often think of witty things to say but usually when it’s too late to say them I have trouble saying no If you love what you do, working on holiday doesn’t count as work Sleeping I tend to go over and over things that Pills haven’t gone well Feeling useful puts my mind at rest I’m often nervous and tense I often get angry Does life have you reaching for the pills? I’d like to meditate but it doesn’t suit Anxiety keeps me awake at night my dispositionSo how is it for you? Are you at the top of I often feel that I have too much to do I envy those who are carefree andyour game enjoying the buzz and and not enough time in which to do it bohemianexcitement of the unknown or do you find all I’ve often said that I need to changethe ‘fear factor’ is taking over? I hate making the first move, whether my life it’s in relationships or my career Recognition is what drives meAre you sleeping like a baby after a long I don’t feel comfortable when I’m bybusy day or are you reaching for those myself.sleeping pills? The Results When someone pays me a compli- ment, I think it’s only because they are The Stress Test being polite. At least 3 I find it hard to pinpoint what I’mFor a bit of light relief (and perhaps an feeling. You are scared of missing outinsight into your own coping mechanisms or being missed outfor a busy profession) have a go at our A small worry often escalates until I feel overwhelmedStress Test below. You need your mobile phone, internet I tend to withdraw into my own access and constant news updates to feelReview each of the statements and circle bubble (both in terms of relationships that you are in control of everything andthose that you feel may apply to you: and at work) this gives you a sense of calm. You have a 19
  • fear of missing out, being left out, losing So what kind of Mr Aggressor your place in the world and this constant state of being alert can make you feel Recruiter are you? He can be summed up in three words – stressed and irritable. pushy, pushy, pushy! He doesn’t listen, won’t take ‘no’ for an answer and carries At least 3 on until the magic words ‘just send me the details’ are uttered. Very irritating! You are scared of having time to stop and think Mr Forgetful You live life at full speed, filling your days You certainly know this type. He with plans, projects, social and business completely forgets everything you’ve arrangements and find it hard to switch previously said to him. ‘No, I’m not off. You like to feel that there is action all recruiting’, ‘No, I’m not interested’, ‘No, the time. You are not allowing yourself same as last week, I never use recruitment time to just be. agencies’. Definite skill to Mr Forgetful – he’s got professional amnesia down to a fine art! At least 3 Big Bad & Mad? Big, Mr Professional Closer You are frightened of what Are you cool, calm and collected? Do you you don’t know have complete control over your working Ah – the perfect salesman. He will just go day or does the pressure having you on and on until the kill. Excellent sales Your life is made up of routine and you like patter, won’t give in until the end and will roaring by lunchtime? the familiarity of normal everyday things. try and wow you with his sales technique. You have a great sense of control and We’ve all been there haven’t we? His candidate is the best, no doubt about order and like adventure but only in other Everyone has, at some point in their lives, it. people’s lives. Changing your routine been into an agency to meet a recruiter or slightly would allow you the chance to Mr Mind Reader maybe caught up with them in a neutral experience something new. venue – a coffee shop at a handy Now we have the ‘Derren Brown’ motorway service station or at a local impersonator. Mr Mind Reader believes At least 3 hotel bar. that you might be recruiting. He pretends or says that he’s heard a rumour and will You over-think For simplicity, let’s call our eager job continue to talk/’lie’ to you about what he seeker ‘Mr Average’. So Mr Average arrives feels that you may or may not need. Tricky This is probably typical of many people. and is brimming with confidence, perhaps one to get rid of is Mr Mind Reader. Even if you are physically relaxing or a little nervous but keen to talk through relaxed, you can’t switch your mind off career opportunities. He’s eager to be told Mr Porky Pie and it’s constantly running over past what is on offer for him and is keen to do events and situations – some good and whatever it takes to secure the next role. This recruiter will answer ‘yes’ to anything some bad. This can waste a lot of valuable you ask. He will always say what you want energy. What he doesn’t expect is to be told the to hear and will promise he can deliver full life story of his recruiter – the ins and any kind of candidate you might be At least 3 outs of his complicated family life – how looking for. He may only deal with many times he’s been married, how many temporary warehouse staff but, in his You are always anxious children he has and how he had that eyes, your next Managing Director will be nervous breakdown back in 2006. on his books. This is a tricky one. Even if it’s a good day and you are surrounded by friends and Mr Average wants the meeting to be all people who love you, you still feel like about him but, unfortunately, that is not there is danger lurking around the corner. always the case. This can make you constantly stressed and unable to relax. Recruiter Types Mr Mailshot Summary You know this type. He creates dodgy Interesting test? Truth is, of course, that adverts which are designed to attract no-one fits neatly into any of these boxes candidates. He takes the best of these and we are all a little bit of each one. candidates, writes an email including their Stress does, of course, play an important key skills and mails this out to his list of part in our lives and can greatly affect how clients. No added value, no extra work we deal with our working life – in this case and an expectation of a full ‘fat’ Well, would you believe – in Recruitment. introduction fee. a word he said?20
  • Mr Know it All So what have we issues with colleagues, close friends and learnt so far? family can help to put a differentA very annoying type and another one perspective on things.that’s hard to get off the phone. Mr Knowit All knows everything there is to know Quality ‘me’ timeabout your industry – more than you of Find useful information...course! He is happy to name drop and The dreaded ‘me’ time which is now such aalways keen to tell you how to do your job. Recruitment can be stressful! clichéd phrase that it’s laughable. In summary though, it does make sense. Some stress is normal.You may find a genuine Mr Know it All in Step away from the laptop, blackberry, TV, Everyone gets stressed - not whatever. Work hard but make time to dothe mix – he may well be an expert in his just recruiters!field and could be quite useful to you but other things that you enjoy. There are many differentcheck him out before you get in too deep! kinds of recruiters! Challenge yourself Mr Cowboy In the work environment, you will hear phrases like ‘setting goals’ and ‘creatingOh dear – this is a bit of a sad one. No KPIs’ all the time. No-one wants to feelscruples, no morals, no professionalism. that they are constantly settingMr Cowboy will, quite literally, do themselves targets that they haven’t got aanything to make money out of you. It’s How can you make hope in heaven of ever achieving.all about his business and nothing willstand in his way. Avoid like the plague! Recruitment less stressful? However, it is good to try new things. Varying the ‘norm’ can be exciting and So we’ve established that some stress is challenging and this, in itself, has a very Mr Order Taker normal – after all it keeps us motivated, positive effect on your emotional well keeps the adrenaline running and gets us being.How annoying these are. They work from out of bed in the morning. We’ve alsoa standard script – just like your average established that Recruitment is a stressful Avoid unhealthy habitscall centre worker. “Do you need anyone profession and that Recruiters – a verythis week?”“No, OK, bye, speak to you next mixed bunch of people – can get stressed! Well – what did you expect when weweek”. Hardly very memorable eh? mentioned the NHS? Relying too heavily What can we do about dealing with stress on caffeine, nicotine, drugs or alcohol is to make us better recruiters? For this commonly known as ‘avoidance’ section of our article, we’re going to dip in behaviour. and out of the NHS website and see what they recommend in the way of Turning to any of these substitutes to deal ‘stress-busting’ techniques. The following with stress will not be good for you in the suggestions have all been adapted to long run. Having said that, everything in appeal to our TDS readers! moderation is a good motto! Who can deny the obvious enjoyment of a good Activity cup of coffee or a fine glass of wine with a meal? Yes – an old, tried and tested method and not something that you really feel like doing if you are feeling stressed. However, it really does work! Do some exercise – go for a swim, walk, run or anything – get out there and breathe in some fresh air and get away from your desk. Mr Professional Take control He knows his market & Problem avoidance is quite normal. ‘If I understands your business don’t look at it, it won’t be there’ is a Mr Professional common thought. Every problem has a solution so deal with situations as theyThis is the one that everyone wants to arise and work through them. The A fine glass of wine!emulate. Mr Professional is very ‘old satisfaction of a job well done can beschool’. He uses tried and tested methods. extremely invigorating. Do volunteer work or in ‘modern language’ – Do someone else a favour!He knows his market, understands your Connect with people Yep – it would be good to feel that webusiness and genuinely wants to do the Many people try and deal with stress by could fit volunteer work into our alreadybest for you and present you with quality keeping themselves to themselves busy working days but, in the real world,candidates that will enhance your however a good team around you can this is not necessarily going to definitely help. Sharing thoughts and Not knocking the volunteers – people 21
  • who visit the sick in hospital, those who they are indispensible. The truth is that give their time to work in the community. no-one is. We live in difficult times – double or single dip recession or These are people who are worthy of whatever it is. All anyone can do is do the praise. In the hectic recruitment world best they can and accept that they can’t though, how can we do our bit? Be a team change the world! player – give someone a compliment at work, buy someone a bar of chocolate What are we aiming for? from the machine. Small things but NUMBERS, NUMBERS & NUMBERS! pleasing others can also have a positive effect on your own emotional well being. You might be sick of SSG saying so, but knowing the numbers of your business is not only necessary but it will save you heaps of stress Work smarter, not harder and anxiety. Oh no – the dreaded ‘Work Life balance’ Bearing in mind that David has been at the coal face with business numbers for ages (& he looks statement. It is true though like he has been too), then you might appreciate unfortunately. Work all the time and you that if he takes all of this stuff so seriously, there must be a reason! run the risk of burning yourself out. Life is So, David is going to give you a run-down of the for living. Enjoy your work, work hard and variables which you ought to KNOW the prioritise your workload. Remember that numbers which make sense and the way in which Mr Chilled and Relaxed you can keep on top of it all. it is not always possible to clear the in-tray in one day! This is not just about your Monthly Management accounts either, it is about planning ahead for business expansion, tax costs and ‘rainy day This is it – Mr Chilled and Relaxed. money’. Get your calculators at the ready guys! He is calm, professional, intelligent and knows his market. He has a good work life balance. A GOOD LOOK AT YOU! As you know, we are asked on a regular basis to He listens to both his clients and his provide feedback on how the ventures supported candidates and tries to do the best for by SSG are doing – not just in terms of money but everything. We are also frequently asked a them. much more focussed question about what types of people are starting a business through SSG, where they are based, what markets they work Above all, he tries to remain as stress-free and which sectors are the most lucrative. as possible as he knows that, by being this A special report is on its way outlining exactly way, he is able to help both clients and that – the ‘demographics’ of SSG – where the money is being generated, both in terms of the candidates alike to the best of his ability. specific recruitment markets but also geographically where too? Is the money coming from the ‘South in Technology’ or the ‘North in To discuss this in more detail, please Commercial Recruitment’? Why is so little (apparently) happening in Wales when Scotland A good work/life balance contact me, David Jones on 01442 200944 is booming? We know that the Girls are doing is important or you can email me at slightly better than the Boys right now (see Page 11 of this issue) but how does that translate across the whole of SSG? Be positive If nothing else, you will be able to ‘place yourself’ against the rest of the pack and see where you Yet another cliché! However it is true. At might want to think about expanding? the risk of sounding like a child of the ‘60’s, J JOKER! £50 Alison from Nottingham embrace the moment, enjoy the small g Q: Why did the Recruitment things. Consultant keep a coat hanger in the back of her WHAT’S IN A COMPANY HANDBOOK? car? Everyone knows or has met someone who A: In case she locks her keys in Before you dismiss the idea of a Company Handbook, let’s just have a think about what it is permanently negative. Nothing is right the car ought to contain & why it might be a good idea to for them, they are not happy at work or at have one – even if you have yet to hire an employee!! home, the weather is always too hot or WINNER! too cold, they can’t eat this or that or the We are not talking about the glorious nonsense we have all been presented with over the years other. And it’s all a bit depressing isn’t it? when working for a big corporate or power crazed independent! – we are talking about the nuts & bolts that you need to protect your A positive attitude to life can have a very J JOKER! £50 business, your data and your future. positive effect on your mental health and This is about making sure that you comply with Sam from Sheffield both the law but also with the good principles can help to combat stress. Q: Did you hear about the behind any successful business. Recruitment Consultant who stood in front of a Accept the things that mirror with his eyes closed? And yes, before you ask – SSG can help you to put it all together! you can’t change A: He wanted to see what he looked like asleep We’ll end with a difficult one! Everyone wants to feel that they can make a WINNER! difference. All employees like to feel that22
  • Chris Goes all ‘DIY’ SPAM email is becoming more prevalent - from your bank, apply the following what can you do to stop it? checklist: In short, not a lot! But there are some Is it actually my bank i.e. my account’s indentifiers to help stop you from with Lloyds but this is from Barclays - Can I reduce the amount of SPAM? inadvertently clicking on an email either out Don’t Click! of curiosity or because it “looks genuine”. Again, it really depends on your “online Check any links for genuineness - if activity”. Classic cases are emails supposedly from you roll over a link and it says banks. I can’t tell you how many Barclays “” (as an example), it is not If you buy online or use sites that need accounts I’ve had “Changes to my “” - 1 l registration, your details can quite easily be Barclaycard Conditions”. As I hadn’t got a missing could be the difference sold. Barclaycard when I first started receiving these emails, I was a little bit suspicious! between a legitimate email and a Your Junk folder (if using Outlook) is hoax. normally pretty good at picking up actual The latest trend is emails from “China SPAM. Is it named - or signed-off, does it Domain Name Registration Center” which contain any actual personal Use an “alias” that can be cancelled for usually start: information such as last 4 digits of registering for anything that asks if you want Dear Manager, your account number to receive updates - the company you are registering with may be reasonably (If you are not the person who is in charge of Has it actually come from an email respectable but of course may pass your this, please forward to your CEO, Thanks) ..... address that’s relevant - an alias that’s details on to “third parties you may be not actually a valid email address can interested in”. When looking up the address on a few be used - it may look valid but is the received recently on Google Maps, I found part genuine, it may look As a forwarding address it wil just “die” when one of these to be in the middle of a Paddy similar eg cancelled. Field - seriously! So you can kind of tell that they are hoax just from that. In an article on This is of course just one example - but could If in doubt, DON’T CLICK! Give me a call or, it states: lead to your identity being nicked so it’s send me a screen print .... really worth checking before clicking! This is a scam because the claim is false 01442 200941 and nobody actually applied for the domains in question. Registrants should merely ignore such emails as spam. However if the registrant wishes to truly secure those domains in the Chinese and other Asia based TLDs, the registrant is welcome to find a reputable Chinese SPAM Checklist registrar and complete their online branding portfolios. Does it actually “look” genuine? So, please be warned - IGNORE IT! Check the “Sender” - if it looks dodgy it probably is As for the other types of SPAM ,there is also Look for inaccuracies i.e. wrong logo, obvious spelling mistakes the Phishing type of email, which is Look for “alias links” ie obviously not a link to a genuine page intended to try and steal your bank details or other identity details - these are more Attachments - ZIP, PDF, HTM, .txt are often used. If you’re not expecting it, likely to be emails purporting to be from or don’t recognise the sender -DON’T OPEN IT! your bank. They are getting cleverer by the day in how to persuade you to “Click on the link below to update your security details” or Talk to SSG - they can set up aliases for you and in some cases block other similar devious tricks. senders (and senders whole domains) at server level for those persistent offenders If ever you receive an email purporting to be23
  • Let Us ComeRunning!