Our Manifesto

ManifestoRecstra is quite simply – Recruitment. As it should be.

It hit me out of the blue … like an All Blacks front row, and I remember it very clearly. I had just completed a couple of back-to-back interviews with two of the best Recruiters I had met for ages.

The first one … Simon … told me that the main reason he was looking for a new opportunity was because he felt undervalued. His manager was a clock-watcher and although Simon had been smashing his billing targets, he was being performance managed, because he turned up 10 minutes late for 3 days last month. Simon told me that he had worked through his lunch break every day for the last 4 weeks and had stayed late for interviews most days. Sound familiar?

It didn’t make sense. Here we had a bloody great recruiter … who was disenfranchised with his employer, because they considered clocking on from 8 – 6 more important than proven performance … stupid.

The second recruiter … Jennifer … was coming back to work after having a child. When she left for maternity leave, she was an absolute high performer … a star! She had actually won the top biller award nationally for the previous 2 years. However, she was made redundant because she couldn’t come back full time. Her childcare provider could only take her baby 3 days a week. Jennifer didn’t have any family nearby to babysit for her, so she needed the flexibility of a 3 day working week. Jennifer was happy to pro-rata her salary and was confident she produce a full time output with part time hours … her employer disagreed … stupid.

I hate to say it, but the recruitment industry is broken … maybe not broken, but definitely showing cracks, like any old house whose foundations have shifted over time.

The simple facts are that the needs of recruiters, the ever-shrinking globe and the proliferation of online tools for sourcing have demanded our industry move on from the draconian sweat shop days of old.

The flexibility to hold a Skype interview on the other side of the world while your family sleep, or completing a reference check when the referee is available and dedicating time to what’s important to you. That’s what matters to the modern recruiter.

And why can’t the traditional recruitment agency provide that?

Because they are bound by an out-dated payment for outcome model. Traditional agencies pay a salary to their recruiters right? But they are only paid by their clients on the successful placement of candidates … stupid.

It forces an environment of unyielding pressure. Where managers manage by harsh numbers … clock in at 8am … complete 50 sales calls by 11am … 10 client visits a week … 20 candidate referrals a week … 2 client/candidate interviews per day … 1 placement a week … clock off at 6pm. It doesn’t matter what the KPIs are – it’s incessant and it just doesn’t work. Sound familiar?

Not only that … our industry continues to disenfranchise those who crave flexibility. It burns out the high achievers and becomes a closed shop to those that don’t fit the full time mould.

We are losing quality recruiters in alarming numbers and our industry refuses to adapt!

Adapt … it’s a great word isn’t it? Put simply, it means to adjust to different requirements or environments. But the recruitment industry is about as adaptable as a very old dog … trying to learn some very new tricks!

And this left me with a huge conundrum … How could I help my recruiter network (who didn’t fit the mould) to develop a meaningful career? How could I develop an environment where quality of work was paramount, recruiter flexibility was essential, and value to the client was assured? How could I create a pathway that allowed recruiters to self manage, form a true global network of candidates, clients and colleagues, and have access to the best professional development and training tools available to guarantee continual growth and a real career?

Sure … I could continue to preach to recruitment firms about the necessity of change, but that only works if these firms want change. I could put it all in the too hard basket and acquiesce to these same recruitment firms to the detriment of top recruiters everywhere, or ... I could create a movement myself.

A complete re-jig of the whole way we work. Flip the industry on its head with a pay for service model to bring us in line with real professional services. Drag the recruitment industry kicking and screaming into the gig economy.

And hence … Recstra was born.