With it being Sellick Partnership's 10th birthday celebrations last week it forced me to reflect on my time with Sellick Partnership. In November, I will have been with Sellick Partnership for seven years - and I think that any recruitment consultant would be lying if they didn't say the last few years have presented their ups and downs.
I cannot pretend to be an economist who has understood all of the changes over the last few years. I do however distinctly remember a meeting with my Director, Ray Waring and MD, Jo Sellick three years ago. Despite the meeting highlighting that we were entering into a challenging economic period I felt that it was a really positive meeting. Firstly, the fact that the business was acknowledging the financial situation with the consultants was a real positive for me as it meant that they were being realistic and preparing for the times ahead. What also stood out was the message "you will become a better consultant for experiencing these challenging times”. I know that we are not quite in the 'good times' just yet but I do think that it is important to reflect on how things have unfolded over the last few years.
I suppose that I can only speak from a personal level but I do see a number of my colleagues, myself included (without wanting to sound big headed) who have become better consultants. One thing that I think favoured the business was the focus on our candidates and the service that we provided them through these tough times. At the time there were many more candidates than jobs, and often some agencies tend to forget about their candidate care, i.e. by not returning calls, not updating them on jobs and generally not offering a good service - with the thought process being that because there is a wealth of candidates they do not need to invest as much time in them as their clients. Sellick Partnership however, had a different tact. At a time when there were increasingly more jobseekers in the market it was more important than ever for us to look after our candidates. I think this has been one of the main things that has set Sellick Partnership apart, as now, when the market is showing signs of picking up and good candidates are getting harder to find it shows that candidates are remembering who looked after them in the less busy times.
You also learn to be a better consultant as you learn to be sharper, to ask all of the necessary questions and how important it is to really understand our clients requirements - so to provide the best candidate solution first time. You also learn that you have to work harder but equally as important you have to work smarter. When money is tight it becomes even more important for the client to recruit the right individual. In my mind this is why Sellick Partnership have 'weathered the storm'. Clients come back to Sellick Partnership because they know that they will get a loyal service from experienced, passionate consultants. And candidates come to us when looking for new work opportunities for exactly the same reasons.
I personally feel that Sellick Partnership and the individuals in the business, right from the MD to the consultants have learnt a great deal from the last few years - setting us in good stead for the next ten years and more!