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“Why I’m in recruitment. The benefits of pursuing a career in something you love”


After 8 months travelling around Europe, I found myself in London looking for work. Jobs in recruitment were advertised everywhere. I thought my psychology studies would be beneficial and contribute productively in this type of role. Some months later when I gave recruiting actuaries a shot, I realised that I’d found a niche sector in which I could find an abundance of “psychological nuances” to keep me interested.

I had found the right spot for me and I have enjoyed a career which continues to bring me pleasure and variety which I have been able to transfer successfully in my return from the UK to Australia. I revel in reflecting on the differences between one person and the next even when they may in fact work alongside each other performing similar tasks and reporting to the same manager.

Some moments which bring a smile to mind when writing this, include:

The fresh graduate who thought getting his first job would be easy! So, after not attending any company career days or graduate fairs at university, took off on 8 months holiday straight after his last exam. On his return, reality hit as he realised the job market was asking “what’s wrong with him?” when told he was immediately available. With the help of his recruiter (me) he was quickly snapped up and is now a successful Actuary and Broker in the London market. He laughs now when looking back at his naivety and lack of judgment when at university.

The client / hiring manager who, after giving a detailed job brief in a face-to face meeting including the key selection criteria, realised when the notes were read back to him that he was in fact outlining all the aspects of himself some 6-8 years earlier – a “mini me” if you like. Needless to say, the job brief became a little more generic allowing for a wider field of candidates to be considered and an appointment made.

The corporate Insurer relocating their head office to mainland UK who wanted me to personally co-ordinate the hiring of two actuarial teams numbering over 40 staff. After six weeks of frantic activity, job done – and I had nearly gone cross-eyed with the sheer quantity of people I’d seen.

Another aspect of this role I enjoy is treating each person as an individual and offering third party, independent advice on occasion.

This includes assisting Actuaries who have proven, top-shelf technical skills, with interview feedback and tips on what to practice so that they improve their impact. This could be in terms of voice projection, developing anecdotes to demonstrate experience, or even how to make a positive impression in the initial phases of a job interview.

In the current climate of increasingly using Business intelligence to help make business decisions, I’m finding it’s not the technical, actuarial requirements which makes the sourcing of the right candidate tough but the softer, intangible and personal elements which make for a successful hire for a client.

It’s this, the “people” side of my job, which I still enjoy and gets me out of bed all these years later.

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