Tell us a little bit about your business – when it started etc?
I am the founder of Futures Recruitment Services Ltd which launched in 1999. We are a generalist agency and the journey to where we are now has, on the whole, been exhilarating, heart warming and lots of fun along the way. My mantra is to make every day better than yesterday and strive not to be the “best” but be the best we can be!
Futures has thrived and survived various recessions, the Global financial crash of 2008 and most recently of course, the Coronavirus pandemic. It is our experience, however, that has taught us to be flexible and adaptable and to recognise what the clients need, not just to tell them what we do.
When I started in recruitment we had cards, application forms and a telephone and everyone registered in their lunch break but now all the technology means that we operate any where, any time, any place and can meet clients via a screen from anywhere across the UK.
Our philosophy is simple, we listen , we learn, we deliver.
What does a normal day consist of/look like for you?
I am a keen, wannabe dressage rider and competitor and so my day begins at 5 am so that I have time to muck out and ride before getting to the office. I actually get time to think and plan so much of my business day whilst out hacking through the woods without any distractions.
Once I’ve landed at my desk , the day takes off with meetings, team talks, client meetings and working with my team of Consultants. I rarely take holidays because I just love what I do and am blessed to have a team of incredible and talented people around me.
What do you love about being based in Chichester?
Chichester is the City that has supported the growth and development of Futures enabling us to become a recruitment agency operating nationally from within the heart of the city walls. The vibrant and unique collection of clients and businesses is why we love the area and find ourselves adapting to working with a diverse range of clients.
One day we can be recruiting into a post for the aristocracy and the next day working for a manufacturing company or an Art Charity. We love the wide range and diversity of people we meet and whilst the high street may have evolved in many ways over the last 22 years, the natural flow of visitors into our offices is key to understanding the ever-changing market.
What have been some of your biggest challenges during the global pandemic?
Like all businesses when the Government announced the first lockdown in March 2020, it was a fairly anxious time. We kept working throughout the lockdown and adapted to the changing recruitment needs of our Clients supplying key workers and temps for things like refuse collections, delivery drivers and Covid marshals.
The greatest challenge for us as a team was learning to work in a totally new way and for the first time, not being based in the office but from our kitchen tables. However, we embraced home working with a laptop, mobile phone and learning how to communicate with each other whilst overcoming wobbly internet connections, all of which was frustrating at times.
Self-motivation, self discipline (no time to put that washing on) and tenacity were key strengths that kept us delivering that same service to our Clients. I think we all took something positive from that and certainly as a business we have come out of this stronger and fitter than before.
Do you have any future goals for the business or things you are looking forward to as life returns to normal?
We are excited to be expanding our Permanent Recruitment Division this year and have bolstered up our Temporary Team. It will also be great to welcome candidates back through the door for our face to face registration process. We are also bidding for further Government type of contracts for the future. It might also be on the agenda to go out for a meal with the team!
How have Blue Spire helped you with your business?
Eighteen months ago we had the need to make alternative arrangements for our payroll and accounts function and we chose Blue Spire. We wanted to work with a practice big enough to cope with the then current business but also able to deliver when our expansion plans came to fruition without losing sight of the people we were working with. We wanted to work with a team as flexible, professional and as customer focused as ourselves.
The transfer was seamless. They have completely streamlined the accounting processes and as a result, everything runs far more efficiently. We get regular updates on the latest Government announcements (particularly useful during the Covid Crisis) and up-to-date management accounting information from a very knowledgeable team.
Blue Spire get on with the accounts which means that we can get on with the Recruiting!