When we were in the process of integrating Networkers into the business and rebranding to Gattaca, not only did we look at our corporate strategy and vision but we also reviewed our company values to see if they were still representative of the kind of business we wanted to be.
I have always been a big believer in having values that employees can not only remember, but actually live by. I absolutely buy into our values; ’Love your job’, ‘Be inspiring’ and ’Take pride’, they are a great shorthand for our positive company culture and high quality delivery.
I would like to look back at some moments that epitomise our ‘take pride’ value on a personal basis. Over my 36 years in the recruitment industry, there are many moments that I look back on proudly, from my first job fill as a recruiter to the recent team awards won by both Networkers and Gattaca.
My first job fill & contract win
No matter how long you’ve been in the recruitment business, every consultant remembers the first job they filled and I am no exception. After completing my training programme I went to an industrial estate and cold called each of the businesses in the area. Back at the office the next day, I received a call from the transport manager at a company called Frigoscandia who I had spoken to the day before. They were looking for two HGV Class One drivers and asked me to fill the roles. They were the first positions I filled and I still vividly remember the buzz I got when I could tell the candidates they were successful.
Another moment in my career before joining Gattaca that I’m still proud of to this day came when I was MD of a business that provided industrial staff. I pitched and won to BT’s Logistics function to become their first and sole agency. It felt great to win the business after leading the process and it was all the more special as it was the first national contract that the business had ever won.
These were proud moments in my career where my hard work was recognised and I was rewarded for my efforts. Now, as CEO of Gattaca, I instil the importance of recognition and reward across the business to ensure our employees get the credit they deserve. On an individual level, I personally congratulate each employee who passes our promotion criteria every Quarter – nice calls to make! On a team level, we hold annual staff awards voted for by all employees, shortlisted by the leadership team and selected by the Management Board. It’s always a fantastic night to see both new and long-serving employees receive the recognition they deserve in front of their peers.
Award winning teams
Last Thursday marked another proud moment in my career. Quite unexpectedly, I was inducted into the ‘Hall of Fame’ at the UK Recruitment International awards. While I was honoured to receive this accolade, I was just as proud of our other successes on the night. Our Internal Recruitment team were recognised for their hard work over the last year, picking up the ‘Best Back Office Team’ award and the Group were shortlisted in the ‘Best Recruitment Company to Work For’ category.
September was also a great month for recognition. This time for our Networkers team in Mexico who picked up the Huawei Excellent Cooperation Partner Gold Award for their work on behalf of this valued client. The team - which includes the consultants working on the account right to the back office team ensuring the processes are smooth - have gone the extra mile to ensure they offer a top service to Huawei. A great example of a team taking pride to deliver results to the client!
Pride in our marketplace
In order to provide this level of service to our customers, our consultants have to be advocates for the industry they are recruiting into and fully understand the challenges that the industry faces, from both a client and candidate point of view. The demand for candidates with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) skills is widening the already prevalent skills gap across the engineering and technology markets. This is a massive structural problem for our economy and we are doing what we can in a small way to mitigate it. To that end, over 20 of our consultants volunteer as STEM ambassadors, visiting schools to help promote the importance and value of STEM skills. As thought leaders we need to do all that we can to support our industries and inspire young people to take up STEM subjects and enter associated careers.
Our proactive approach to addressing the STEM skills gap has led to us brokering a relationship between a client and their local school to allow sixth form students to join a work experience programme during the summer holidays. This is something that we are keen to replicate on a bigger scale so that we can help our specialist Engineering and Technology clients develop the talent pipeline they so crucially need.
Another way we reach out to our engineering and technology communities is by carrying out regular research into the beliefs and attitudes of our candidates. We pride ourselves on having extensive knowledge of our industries, their challenges and areas of growth - conducting regular research is one way of keeping our knowledge up to date.
In the last week we have launched our ‘Voice of the Workforce’ survey. This is an in-depth study that will provide us a greater understanding of our markets and help ‘sharpen our focus’ over the coming new year. Look out for the results early next year.
Taking Pride will mean different things to different people and this underpins its worth as a universal value. I hope that all of us at Gattaca are proud of what we're achieving today and are excited about what we can accomplish over the next few years.