HR Directors – want to be more Director and less HR?

HR Directors – Want to be more Director and less HR?
HR Directors – Want to be more Director and less HR?

HR Directors – want to be more Director and less HR? For years now, HR executives have been getting a tough time in the business world…


On the one hand, they are frequently told that they need to be strategic and to operate at the top table, and on the other hand, they are lambasted for minor problems with issues such as terms and conditions, contracts, pay or disciplinaries.


Here’s the thing though – CEOs expect you and your team to deliver the core HR processes well, but they don’t care about these processes beyond the fact that they are done. What they really care about is growing the business, taking risks, innovating processes, retaining customers and leveraging technology.


Which leads me to the main point of this blog, if HR Directors want to be more Director and less HR, then why do they try to manage these sorts of projects themselves?


Imagine if there was an easy solution to free up your time and to help deliver the core HR processes well, whilst simultaneously allowing you to focus on the business strategy.


The answer may be a lot simpler than you think…


By hiring an Interim Executive, you will be able to do just that!


You see, with an Interim you will:

  • Always be able to quickly access the specific skills you are after and have a proven expert who can deliver on your behalf.
  • Get your projects delivered on time and to budget, without all the problems or administration you can experience with employees.
  • Be able to simply say “goodbye” when the project is complete, with no hard feelings.
  • Have more time to drive business strategy knowing that the operational issues are being sorted out.


If you would like to get the secrets to hiring the best Interim Talent in the market and find out more email me at

You can view more about Sam Perry our Shared Services Executive Search expert here


Interim Executives are expensive…

Interim Executives are expensive…
Interim Executives are expensive…

Interim Executives are expensive…“Compared to what?” Is my usual trite response.

It’s funny how people often focus on cost rather than value. If I told you I could save you £10 Million but it would cost you £1 Million to achieve it, would that be expensive or a great deal?


I can tell you one thing for certain, the interim’s I work with are not as expensive as certain junior management consultants who have half the experience (and cost twice as much!)


…But they get huge day rates! “Argh you’ve got me.” But really, how does this stack up against a permanent employee?


The IMA (Interim Management Association) have calculated:


“An executive on £100,000 is actually costing the business a lot more. Once you have added in bonuses, holiday pay, NI contributions, pension, health and company car benefits, the real cost is likely to be nearer to £175,000. These costs do not apply to interim managers.”


Based on rough industry calculations, a £100k per annum equivalent interim might charge in the region of £600-700 per day, so even if we paid above that at £750 per day for 232 days (260 working days, minus bank hols and holidays) in a year we are talking an equivalent number £174k.


Not bad for a flexible resource that can be turned on and off as needed… and that’s before I start boring you again with talk of cost vs value.


Interested to find out more? You can email me on

You can view more about James Cumming our change and business transformation specialist here

How HR is preparing for digital transformation.

How HR is preparing for digital transformation
How HR is preparing for digital transformation

How HR is preparing for digital transformation. The world of work is changing and we are truly living in the digital revolution. Given the impact digital has on people and how they work, HR professionals have a lead role to play. However, how does HR prepare for a change as big as the digital transformation?


Shifting any industry towards a digital business model is something that requires fundamental changes to central operating models, organisational processes and the day-to-day operations of its employees.

One of the largest challenges facing HR is a cultural resistance towards change.


What can HR professionals do to handle this?


In order to help companies engage with new technologies and working practices, HR must work with business leaders and board executives to ensure a smooth delivery of these changes:


  • Establish an effective communication channel when fostering these changes, providing opportunities for open conversation with employees.


  • Engage leadership teams to drive cultural changes within an organisation, as these alterations will be far more impactful when enforced by other individuals besides HR.


  • Ensure that companies retain their key talent. This can be done through the implementation of comprehensive strategies that keep highly talented individuals engaged and committed to the successful digital transformation of your company.


Whether companies are ready or not, digital technologies are here to stay. HR must step forward as a key enabler of change, it has a crucial role to play in helping to overcome the barriers.  To discuss further, you can email me on

You can view more about James Cumming our change and business transformation specialist here

Smashing your interview isn’t as complicated as you may think – all it requires is mastering the basics.

Smashing your interview isn’t as complicated as you may think
Smashing your interview isn’t as complicated as you may think

Smashing your interview isn’t as complicated as you may think – all it requires is mastering the basics. The current candidate market is fiercely competitive, and being able to stand out from the crowd is becoming increasingly difficult.

There are countless articles online that list various ways to ensure that you make a lasting impression and ace your interview, however, the subsequent result of these articles is that too many candidates now overthink the interview process and forget the basic, key skills that will help in smashing your interview.


There’s no need to worry about making yourself sound like the most innovative and phenomenal character ever, because, if you master the basics of interviewing then you’re guaranteed to always stand out. Things like preparation, body language, interview etiquette and asking interesting questions are invaluable skills for smashing your interview at any stage of your career.


First impressions, however clichéd, count. They are arguably the most important part of the interview, so be confident from the minute you enter the room. Offer your interviewer a firm handshake and introduce yourself clearly. Naturally, you may be a little nervous, but remember that this is an interview and not an interrogation, so find some common ground with your interviewer. Remember to thank them for inviting you in and let the conversation flow naturally. Also, remember that people employ people, not their CV’s, so let your personality come across.


The hiring manager will most likely have a list of questions to ask you and will want to understand your CV in more detail, so ensure that you know your CV inside out. Think about where you have added value to a business in some of your previous roles and structure them in the STAR interview response technique. STAR stands for Situation, Task, Action, and Result.


You’d be surprised how many people often don’t have a good answer to the question, “so tell me about yourself”. Story-telling is a crucial skill for interviews these days, and interviewers need to be engaged emotionally as well as just being told facts and figures about past experiences. Relating your previous experiences to the current position will help them to imagine you in the role interviewing for.


I believe that the most effective way to make a positive impact in an interview is to ask interesting and memorable questions. Here are a couple of standout questions that people have asked me in the past:

  • What was it about my skills and experience that attracted you to my CV/Profile?
  • What do you enjoy most about working here?
  • What would make someone really successful in the role?


Finally, if you feel like the interview has gone well, don’t be afraid to ask for feedback there and then. You’ll be surprised by the response you will get. Doing this will also give you the opportunity to alleviate any concerns they have with your experience.

To have a chat about your executive search, contact me at

You can view more about Carl Hinett our Executive search of HR professionals specialist here.

Welcome on-board! How to get employee onboarding right.

How to get employee on-boarding right.
How to get employee onboarding right.

Welcome on-board! How to get employee onboarding right: A study published in the Academy of Management Journal in 2012 looked at 264 new employees and found that the first 90 days of employment are crucial for building rapport with management and co-workers.


Employee onboarding is the crucial period that you should be sharing your expectations with them and helping them understand what your company’s core values are. Without this support or direction, employees often don’t end up staying with a company past the four-month mark.


Beyond any company induction, our experience tells us that the most successful hires have a clear understanding of their development plan and how they will fit into a ‘new’ culture together, with a deep understanding of how they will successfully navigate the first 3 to 6 months of the new job.


While training and onboarding are not the only things that help prepare a new employee for their job, without them the chances are that new hires won’t stay at the company for very long. Many companies are aware of the benefits of onboarding new employees as opposed to simply training them. With adequate support from leaders, new hires tend to feel more positively about their job and work harder.


Whilst there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to onboarding or training, there are certain things that we’ve found that will help you successfully implement these processes with new hires. It’s also important to note that there is a difference between these two terms. Whilst training does have an important role within the onboarding process, it doesn’t represent the entire scope on onboarding.


So here are some of re:find’s top tips…

  • Start the onboarding process before day one. Make sure that your new hire has been given a clear outline of their role and how it operates within the wider scope of the company. If you share this information with them from the get go, then they will be able to accurately manage their expectations of this new role.
  • Make it personal. If a new employee feels supported by from all levels within the company hierarchy, then they will have a more positive attitude towards their new role.
  • Be sure about who you are as a business. If you don’t know what your company’s core values are, then how are you going to instil them in your new employees?
  • Make it fun and engaging! This one goes without saying…
  • Assign a mentor. Why not bring in people from all levels of the training of a new employee? Not only can this reinforce training but it will also encourage office relationships.


We want to know about your experiences of onboarding, both good and bad! So tell us what you think and send us any questions that you have about the process and we’ll be happy to help – you can email me on

You can view more about James Cumming our change and business transformation specialist here

Help writing a CV – that won’t leave you cringing for years to come…


Help writing a CV – that won’t leave you cringing for years to come…I recently received an email from an online job board that I hadn’t used for many years informing me that my account would be permanently deleted if it wasn’t reactivated again soon.


It had been 8 years since I had last used the site, and after logging back in I quickly realised that I hadn’t thought my old CV through at all, I’d just thrown as many responsibilities as I could onto a document without considering tailoring it to each company that I was sending it to!


Now, looking at recruitment from the other side of the fence as a recruiter, here are my guidelines for creating a CV that won’t embarrass your future self…


Think about the job you are applying to, and not just the job you are doing.

After your name, phone and email, you need to write 3-4 very punchy lines describing your key strengths in a style that will also give a flare of your personality.


You could also include your LinkedIn profile, providing that it’s up to date and you’re using a professional profile photo. A list of key skills can also be useful, as recruiters may search for keywords within your CV.


Don’t worry too much about throwing in lots of clichés or buzz words, instead, write a paragraph that tells people about your skills.


For example:

“An accomplished chartered accountant, trained from a big 4 accountancy practise before moving into a blue-chip manufacturing business. Experience of working in a fast-paced, commercial environment, and more recently within a shared service centre. Fluent in 4 languages with excellent analytical skills.”


After a section on education and languages, you’ll have a summary section which should be divided into 3 elements: roles, industries, and competences. Often recruiters won’t carry on past this section if these don’t correspond to the brief, so it’s crucial that you clearly lay out all of the necessary information in this section.


Following sections of your CV could include:

  • Tools & technologies (if relevant for your job)
  • Career history with your title, company, and years of service highlighted in bold
  • Relevant roles or projects (I used to just list in order the jobs I had done with a description, but now I only list relevant information and tailor it to the brief)
  • A list of some responsibilities in bullet point form. These can be elaborated on at the interview stage.
  • Results and achievements.


Also, other important things to consider are:

  • Email address – ensure that this is a professional address, and not based on a previous nickname
  • Just use text – sometimes recruitment portals won’t display images, so using a logo may change the layout of your CV.
  • Formatting – ensure you use the same fonts, bold headings and bullet points.
  • PROOFREAD – ensure that you have read your CV more than once, as correct spelling and grammar is crucial. Your CV states you have strong attention to detail, yet you can’t spell ‘liaise’ correctly!


It’s important not to worry too much about the length of your CV! As long as you keep a clean, well-structured and easy to navigate layout, then having a CV that is more than two pages long won’t be a hindrance.


To discuss further, you can email me on

You can view more about James Cumming our change and business transformation specialist here.

Hiring an Interim Executive? You need to get it right! Discover the 8 step process you should follow, by downloading our free eBook here.