Situations Recruitment was established in 1986 by Pat and Patrick Lynch, with Patrick still being the major shareholder today. This year we are celebrating 30 years in business, so we’re the longest-standing Guernsey recruitment agency with the same ownership. Read on for some of the changes we have seen over the years and how we have adapted and embraced them:
Business grew quickly back in the booming 80’s and the team expanded fast, first taking on a PA, followed by additional Consultants and finally extra Administrative staff.
Jenny Mitchell and I joined the business as Consultants in 2001 and 2002 and became Directors within a year of joining, with a view to succession planning. At that point we were a team of 5 staff.
Jenny and I then became shareholders in 2011 and last year we took on two additional staff, a Manager and a Bookkeeper. This expansion saw Situations grow to a strong team of nine.
We ensure a supportive environment for our staff and last year we introduced a new Health Scheme benefit for everyone. We have 4 people working flexible hours and we hold a monthly staff meeting to update everyone on business developments and to hear their ideas. It’s at 2 o’clock on a Friday and we enjoy a glass of champagne, so we call it “Poo at 2”!
Adapting to Technology
Can you believe that 15 years ago we used to sit around a desk and fill envelopes with relevant CV’s to post to our clients’ offices? Now we obviously email CV’s to businesses, but we also use secure recruitment web portals to submit CV’s to some of our clients, mainly the international groups, who use these portals to monitor applications and prepare recruitment statistics.
Contact with our candidates has also changed - in the past we had to telephone our candidates outside of working hours to tell them about new vacancies, organise interviews and to generally keep in touch. Now we constantly use email, mobiles and we also have a computerised texting system, which is extremely discreet and convenient for our candidates.
Last year we introduced a tablet device for taking our candidate questionnaire at each registration meeting. The answers provide us with marketing statistics on how they heard about us, which we can analyse regularly, and we also use it to assess our candidate placement results.
Digital Marketing now plays a huge part in the recruitment industry; we use Facebook, LinkedIn Twitter and Google advertising. Via these channels we advise the public on exciting new vacancies, the state of the local and UK employment markets, developments in the recruitment industry and we share relevant business articles. We can also use this media for keeping in touch with our candidates, particularly University students who sometimes use Facebook Messenger as their only email system, so we can quickly get in touch to advise them on temp work for their vacations or exciting permanent opportunities.
We have an external Social Media Consultant who we meet fortnightly and an in-house Administrator to manage our presence. Last year saw our social media reach increase by 241% year-on-year, with a 40% increase in overall website traffic and a 45% increase in new site visitors. It’s clearly working well.
Our main chosen charities over the last few years have been Lungevity, which provides support to Guernsey sufferers of lung disease, and the GSPCA as we’re all animal lovers. Our charity projects have included volunteering at the Animal Shelter, sponsoring their event banners and pet adverts, and paying for trees/hedging at their latest property development. For Lungevity we have provided breathing machinery, last year we sponsored their “Mindfulness TV” project (a You Tube channel providing meditation techniques) and this year we have paid for all of their new branding and stationery. Our other charitable works include holding bake sales for Macmillan Cancer Support, a quiz night in April 2016 for the Guernsey Sports Commission, and dress down day donations for Bright Tights, Purple Pinkie Day and Jeans for Genes.
From day one here at Situations we’ve been all about the service. We’re highly professional, we abide by the strict Code of Professional Conduct of our governing body, the REC UK, our Consultants are all professionally qualified and we’re extremely friendly and approachable. We also ensure we have a full pack of documentation on file for every candidate for due diligence purposes. We take time to get to know our candidates well and we regularly keep in touch with our clients to ensure the best match for both sides. Our enthusiasm, hard work and quality of service are second to none. All of this is proven by the fact that 60% of our business is repeat or referral.
2015 was our best year financially in our 30-year history, seeing a 49% increase in permanent and contract staff placements and an 18% increase in temp business compared to 2014. And this year is already our best year ever for temp placements!
We won Best Use of Social Media at the 2015 Guernsey Customer Service Awards and came 2nd for Best Small Business in the Guernsey Awards for Achievement in February 2016.
We are sponsoring the Aspiring Star Award at the 2016 Customer Service Awards and can’t wait to present it to the winner in July!
Celebrating our 30 Years
To celebrate this fantastic milestone, not only did we take all of our staff to London for the weekend in May, staying at a top hotel and attending lots of exciting events, but we also held a street food party on Market Street for our clients with a variety of international food on offer, our own special cocktail called “The Jobfather” and local band Buffalo Huddleston providing entertainment. Nearly 100 people attended the event and it was a great success.
We’re extremely proud of the excellent reputation we have on the Island and the relationships we have built with clients and candidates over the years. Whilst maintaining our excellent service and professionalism, we’re ready and able to adapt to new technologies. Here’s to another 30 years!