More Than a Match – Chatting with Recruitment Specialist Owen

The recruitment and interview process when applying for a new role can be daunting for any job seeker, but have you ever wondered what it’s like on the other end for recruiters?

Our recruitment team that works across the Arriba Group, AimBig Employment, LiveBig and Rehab Management work hard to attract and recruit talented candidates for job openings, and are dedicated to finding mutual success for the candidate as well as our businesses.

We spoke to Owen, one of our recruitment specialists, to get his insights on working as a recruiter for Arriba Group and coming from an agency background.

 

“I joined the talent team at the Arriba Group in early December and already I have had a lot to reflect on – especially since this is my first internal recruitment role after working agency recruitment for almost 5 years.

The biggest part of this reflection has been the idea of an applicant’s “placeability” – if you have never worked in a recruitment agency, it is a polite way of saying “can I get an agency fee for this person – yes or no?” Working in an agency, you spend your days talking to every kind of candidate, asking all kinds of skills, experience, personality, and competency-based questions, but the only important question that it all boiled down to was “can I make money working with this person?”

This isn’t the fault of the agency – 9/10 times, an employer is only going to pay a fee to hire someone if they are uncomplicated, experienced & can hit the ground running. That makes sense for the employer too, if you are going to pay a fee, you want them to be a premium candidate, or someone willing to work in a harder-to-fill position. However, those 5 years of simplifying people, and all the complexities that they hold, down to a simple yes/no question, had a real impact on how I was viewing resumes and interviewing people.

The reason I say all this is because this week, I got to hire an Indian-trained candidate who just moved here with amazing experience but requires supervision and eventually sponsorship, and I have also got someone great interviewing for a role who has complicated healthcare requirements that need to be worked around. These didn’t even come up as barriers to entry when I was speaking to the managers hiring for these roles – just things to be considerate of.

I have been trying to put my finger on how I was feeling about all this but today I finally connected it: relief.

I hadn’t realised it, but not being able to recruit in a way that truly aligned with my views and values due to the restrictions that a fee-based approach and market puts on that, had been dragging me down.

My two takeaways:

  • It is so unbelievably good to feel like I’m actually making a positive difference – not just in hiring good people for AimBig Employment, LiveBig and Rehab Management and helping those businesses, but also in investing in the careers of people that many other employers might overlook just because unlocking the doors to their potential is a little more challenging.
  • Arriba truly means it when we say we hire diversely – not limited to colour or gender, we mean diversity of health, visa status, disability, family requirements, living situation – the list goes on. Even in healthcare – an industry that works with marginalised groups every day – this openness to unconventional candidates is rarely seen.

Finally, ringing someone up to tell them they got the job is probably the best part of this role – it is always an electric moment for you and the candidate (usually anyway, I once had someone burst into tears, but that’s a story for another time…) However, it is truly a joyful and meaningful experience on a different level to tell someone that you are not just enabling their career but also bettering their life in a significant way – telling them that we see them for the talent and ability that they bring, and not the barriers that they have had to overcome. One of the Arriba Group’s slogans is “Giving People Their Best Opportunity” – I can honestly say that we fulfil those words on team talent!”

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