Freya Verlander: APSCo & the World of Recruitment

Our guest blog is written by Freya Verlander, a English and Comparative Literature student from University of Warwick, who is currently on an APSCo Placement with Step at GCS Recruitment; one of the UK’s leading multi-sector recruitment businesses covering Technology, Financial Services & Engineering based in London.


 

On my first day I was warmly welcomed to the office with a blood-test. I found out that I don’t have high cholesterol or diabetes – good to know – but, I do have high blood pressure. I left with a leaflet on “why caffeine is my foe” and the advice to cut down on coffee and energy drinks. Don’t worry – this wasn’t part of some bizarre initiation ritual, it was well-being week (there was also a smoothie bar one day and a cross-trainer on another). I’m working in the Technology/IT team at GCS working to place people in permanent roles.

freya-verlander-gcsThe first time I made a call was scary because people who work in IT literally talk an entirely different technical language to you – now I pretend I also speak this language and can blag enough to convince the people I’m calling that I know what I’m talking about: “please do tell me more about the vendor products you have worked with/ I see you have experience with CISCO but what about Juniper or Extreme?”. The first time someone hung up on me felt like a personal insult – I now have a bit more sympathy for the people who ring up about PPI or the “recent accident” I didn’t have but can claim for apparently. One of the major things I’ve realised this week though is that it’s the quality of the calls that matters more than the quantity, and now most of my calls last between 5 and 10 minutes.

The team I’m working with are lovely, and they make me laugh every day and Casra (team leader) is teaching me the ways of the world of recruitment. I had a meeting with him on Friday to agree some targets and talk about how it’s been going so far (really well) – we were actually talking about me spending my whole placement with this team because I really am caught up in it now and I want to start placing people in roles and seeing the whole recruitment cycle. Next week I’m looking to arrange some interviews and then hopefully get someone that I’ve resourced placed. I’m also going to start talking to clients soon, and one of my own targets – although I know it’s aiming a bit high – is to try and pull my own job and place someone – but really, I would be happy just getting some candidates that I’ve found placed.

On Thursday, I was really excited because when I was qualifying a potential candidate, one of the things I asked was whether he was interviewing anywhere else and he was really nice and he started telling me about a role he was going for at a brand new start-up company that literally just moved to the UK a few weeks ago – but they’ve moved with a brilliant new idea about contactless payment. Sadly the candidate wasn’t right for the role – but the new company turned out to be quite a good lead – and I know one of my team has been in touch with the manager.

I’m really enjoying the experience so far – it can be a bit frustrating when you’re making strings of calls and none of them are what you’re looking for – but when you do find someone that seems like a good fit, you forget about it and get excited about getting CVs out, and maybe even getting someone a job.

Freya Verlander

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