View more on these topics

Careers Insight: The right fit

Jupp-Claire-Brightstar

Use the staff and contacts you already know and trust to find the right people to fit into your organisation

Effective recruitment into our sector appears to be a challenge. The average age of a broker is 50-plus and while, of course, there is no issue with their ability to do a great job, the growing concern is that there is a lack of new blood coming through.

Indeed, finding the right new recruits is difficult for firms and the bad news is there is no quick fix to the problem.

But while finding appropriate staff is a big challenge in itself, getting rid of ineffective employees can be even more of an onerous task. With this in mind, getting the recruitment process right in the first place is crucial. Filling vacancies with the wrong people is almost certainly more damaging than having vacancies alone.

Much research has gone into recruitment, with many firms opting for a more scientific approach to the task at hand. The use of psychometric testing and personality profiling is not unusual, and neither is the setting of all sorts of weird and wonderful tasks and exercises for the would-be hopefuls. Indeed, countless hours may have already gone into sifting through CVs and looking at skill sets against job specification criteria.

In the end, though, what exactly does that give you? You may end up with a person who, in theory and on paper, has the required skills, but how do you know for sure they will fit into your business?

Leaving science aside, recruitment strategies today include the likes of social media, apprenticeship schemes and academies, as well as the more traditional job adverts and/or agencies. Social media can be particularly useful as a cheap, efficient way of advertising job roles but the scope and reach can be limited.

Meanwhile, it is good to see academies popping up across the industry and apprenticeship schemes enthuse me too. I am not a fan of recruitment agencies, nor indeed standard advertisements. The advertising and agency routes can be expensive and time-consuming and, ultimately, they may not secure the employees that are hoped for.

We have gone beyond the agencies and adverts approach in favour of something much more personal. The aim is to get the right people not just for the job but for the organisation. New recruits to our Brightstar family must share common traits in terms of work ethic, ambition and values.

To safeguard this, the team is involved in the interviewing stage and also has the opportunity to check during a half-day visit to the business that is required prior to a job offer. The team has to accept the new recruit and the result is that they usually feel like part of the furniture very quickly indeed. To date, the success rate has been amazing.

I have always been a strong advocate of ‘hire for attitude and train for skill’ and I still maintain that recruiting somebody that will fit with your culture and your existing team is the most crucial goal to achieve.

I recently spent some time analysing the origins of our workforce, looking in particular at how we had gone about employing our business consultants. They fit in perfectly, but was there science, luck or magic involved?

The results were quite fascinating and serve as living proof that relationships matter. Knowing a person well enough to make a judgement call on whether they will fit into the organisation has been a winning strategy for us.

Indeed, my results showed there had previously been personal connections with 73 per cent of our business consultants. We have people that have worked for us or with us before, people from the industry that we knew well previously and people that were recommended by friends or family already employed with us.

Using staff to drive recruitment has been very effective and we offer an incentive upon successful recruitment of a new employee. This gives a degree of confidence rather than a leap into the unknown. Our team members are great barometers when gauging the suitability of someone to fit into our culture.

Recruitment can be a risky business, so using those you trust to bring in people they know provides a useful alternative for businesses to consider.

Clare Jupp is director of people development at Brightstar Financial

Recommended

Money-Notes-Currency-GBP-700.jpg

The Right Mortgage & Protection Network launches weekly commission

The Right Mortgage & Protection Network has revealed it now pays commission on a weekly basis. Separately, the network launched a new referral service at its national training event last week. It allows members to refer to the network the business they do not want. TRMPN says there will be no cross selling and brokers […]

Danger-Stop-Warning-Sign-700x450.jpg
1

GE Money stops lending following loan book sale

GE Money Home Lending has stopped lending after its parent company completed a deal to sell off the rest of its loan book. Parent GE Capital put the specialist lender up for sale in April, saying it wanted to concentrate on its industrial and manufacturing businesses. GEC has sold a £4bn book to a consortium […]

Bunton-Pat-AMI-2013-480
3

Pat Bunton: Chancellor has just half of the facts on mortgage prisoner ‘scandal’

Yesterday, Chancellor George Osborne quite rightly questioned the absurdity of an existing borrower who has not missed payments being told by a lender that they cannot afford a new mortgage at a lower rate. Bravo, Mr Osborne, you are spot on and it is great that you have twigged this absolute scandal that has been […]

Money - thumbnail

FCA Retirement Income Market Data

Last week the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) published their collected data under the above title for the period July-September 2015. It should be admitted that ordinarily such a set of figures would hold little appeal for either this article or our readers. Yet these are far from ordinary times for pension savings (and the employers that sponsor same). […]

Income protection

A tailored approach to protection

By Ian Smart, Product Architect, Royal London In an ideal world, clients would be able to afford as much protection cover as they wanted, but few would describe current times as anything approaching ideal. But this doesn’t mean that they have to indulge in an either/or decision that results in missing out on some essential […]