England Associates has 3 shortlisted finalist for “Apprentice of the Year 2018”

From left to right: India James, Abi Robertson and Alfie Colmer

The hard work and dedication of our 2018 Apprentice intake has been formally recognised by the IRP (Institute of Recruitment Professionals) with their nominations for Apprentice of the Year 2018.

The winner will be announced at the end of November 2018 in London where the REC (Recruitment Employment Confederation) are hosting the 10th Annual IRP awards.

David Sleeman – Head of Training & Development at England Associates says: This Apprenticeship program, introduced this year, is important to us as a business and more widely the industry as a whole. Providing a qualification and training program which equips our employees with the knowledge and understanding of the industry they have joined.

The whole team at EA wish the best of luck to our brilliant apprentices Abi Robertson, Alfie Colmer and India James for the award of ‘Apprentice of the Year 2018’ and their future careers in recruitment.

If you would to be part of our next Apprentice program or the Training Academy please get in touch with Tazmin Mansbridge at t.mansbridge@englandassociates.co.uk.


England Associates Apprentice’s Take Over – Pt.1

In April 2018 we launched a new apprenticeship programme for those looking to get into recruitment. Our previous entry-level recruitment schemes has been at great success with those with some office / customer service experience. However, this new programme allows us to take on those with no previous experience and deliver a NVQ Level 3 in Recruitment Consultancy via our training partner.

We asked our first 3 Recruitment Apprentices; Abi Robertson, Alfie Colmer and India James to tell us about their experience so far as an Apprentice at England Associates:

What is it like working at England Associates?


Working for England Associates has been a very rewarding experience so far; the whole office are dedicated to their sectors and the friendly environment made it easy to fit in and get stuck right in to the world of recruitment. It has been interesting as an apprentice being able to work in the different sectors of construction and housebuilding because I have had experience with working a variety of roles as well as contacting people within different positions to get a real feel for the whole recruitment structure we have in place.

How is the Apprenticeship going so far?


I feel the apprenticeship is going extremely well! The recruitment industry is engaging and full of educational information; this covering what it is like to be a part of the ‘work life’ to how to handle self-motivation.

What advice would you give to someone considering starting a Recruitment Apprenticeship?


If you are interested in taking on the NVQ Level 3 in Recruitment Consultancy, I would highly recommend to use the time given for 20% off job learning wisely as we are tested weekly on our knowledge to make sure we know the content. This is a great opportunity for anyone that is looking for a rewarding apprenticeship.

Keep a look out for further ‘Journey Journals’ from our Recruitment Apprentices and our Businesses Apprentices through our website ‘News & Blog’ page and our social media pages (Facebook: @englandassociates, LinkedIn: England Associates and Instagram: @englandassociates).


Q2 Training Academy Graduates

On Friday 15th June, Frankie Skan and Juliette Palmer-Cowell graduated from England Associate’s Training Academy. After taking on the 8-week course for a fast track into recruitment, they have now become independent Recruitment Consultants.

Frankie and Juliette showed great passion throughout the course and the outcomes were well deserved.

The ceremony was held at the England Associates office in Whiteley; in front of those who have witnessed Frankie and Juliette grow into the Recruitment Consultants they are today. Once the ceremony came to an end the celebrations continued with a meal and a bottle of Prosecco at a local restaurant.

The Head of Learning and Development, David Sleeman:

Congratulations to our Q2 Training Academy Graduates! Both Frankie and Juliette were a pleasure to work with over the last 8-weeks. They showed great passion for recruitment throughout the course and the outcomes were well deserved.

They have now joined their respective teams within our Housing & Construction divisions. I wish them every success for their future careers and I look forward to continuing to work alongside them.

We are proud to have Frankie and Juliette as a part of the team and we are excited for their future with England Associates.

We are now looking for our next intake of the Training Academy to follow the footsteps of Frankie and Juliette and the rest of our successful graduates. If you would like to apply to be a part of our next Training Academy you can find out more here:

Apprentice Recruitment Consultant

Trainee Recruitment Consultant


England Associates Awarded Accredited Centre status for Recruitment Training

We are delighted to announce that we have been successfully accredited by the REC and now approved to deliver training for the Certificate in Recruitment Practice (CertRP) Level 3.

This compliments and builds on the success we have had in training entry-level staff via our internal Training Academy and Apprenticeship programme, which have been recognised in both trade and local press for our investment in training and development.

This accreditation follows the REC reviewing all of our in-house training materials and processes which they confirm are up to the required standard to deliver the CertRP programme. We are now able to add this to our training portfolio and invest further in our staff to work towards this accreditation.

David Sleeman, Head of Learning & Development:

I am immensely proud that the training at England Associates is now officially accredited to the standard I knew we have been at for the last two years.

We take pride in delivering market leading training to those new to recruitment. This will now allow us to invest further in our existing staff and those with more experience to achieve their CertRP standard.

The CertRP programme contains six essential units from business development, personal branding and key selling through to recruitment legislation and more. It provides an excellent foundation for new and existing staff members to fully understand the complexity of the recruitment market and be able to speak authoritatively to both clients and candidates alike.

We are looking forward to ensure we maximise the opportunities this gives to us to improve the skills and capabilities of our team to introduce talented people into construction, defence, engineering, house building & property services markets nationally.

You can find out more about career opportunities at England Associates here. https://www.englandassociates.co.uk/join-our-team


Could “concrete floors” be the way to get more gender diversity in STEM leadership roles

Marie Malyon, Marketing & Talent Acquisition Manager talks about how we could apply Claire Ainsley’s concept of “concrete floors” to the Scientific, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM) leadership roles.

When working with STEM businesses you can’t seem to go a week right now without being bombarded with statistics around the benefits of a gender diverse workforce and presented with a 101 different initiatives, quotas and targets on how to tackle the female talent shortage.

However I always found the practice of positive discrimination and diversity quotas challenging. Call me jaded, but I feel the calls of “she only got that job because she is a woman” and similar sentiments explicitly go against the discrimination they try to combat.

That’s what got me excited about Claire Ainsley, from the University of Sussex, concept of “concrete floors” to tackle the under-representation of women in governments and top business. Beyond the obvious bad puns I could make about being a specialist construction and house building recruitment business and that our clients will have a lot of experience laying concrete floors, this is an easy to implement strategy.

This idea is that once a female professional makes it into a senior position they “sometimes dipped but rarely fell below that level again” combating previously common place opinions from senior business leaders that their female colleagues ‘don’t want’ to be on the board. Thus the name concrete floor.

The full study by Ainsley suggests that the most effective strategy to achieve this is for business leaders to make a ‘personal pledge’ to improve their search, selection and interview practices to promote more equal opportunities for men and women to make it into these positions in the first place, and then woman can do the rest themselves!


Ref: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-44158186


Growth in the use of temporary workers signals employers confidence in market stability

Image taken from original post. 

We recently saw a blog post from Recruitment Grapevine that got us talking about how the uncertainty around the UK economy could be affecting business use of temporary workers.

We asked David Sleeman to write down his thoughts:

I believe the use of temporary employees will continue to rise as we fast approach the BREXIT deadline.

The temporary resource model is not new;  supplementing a company’s permanent headcount allows flexibility to expand or contract resource without commitment when needed to meet project deadlines, deliverables or customer demands.

According to the Recruitment & Employment Confederation’s (REC) latest job market outlook, 30% of business feel confident about their future prospects and 29% of businesses feel it’s getting worse. However these stats only makes up 59% of the study, so I am making the assumption that the other 41% must either not have an opinion, feel like it’s about the same, or did not even respond to the survey.

Yet despite these statistics I feel business confidence in line with the unstable economy will vary from sector to sector. England Associates works closely with both the Construction and House Building industry and future prospects appear to be positive. The use of permanent and temporary resource is equally in high demand and does not reflect the lack of confidence suggested in the job market outlook from the REC.

The biggest challenge we face is a lack of qualified candidates to meet that demand. We find our candidates through our many networks and close working relationships within the industry but this doesn’t meet the demand.

As REC’s Director of Policy, Tom Hadley states “It is encouraging that employers are feeling more optimistic about the UK economy…” I feel that as BREXIT arrives and then passes this optimism will increase and we may see a rise in permanent hiring strategy as companies start planning their recruitment for the next 18-24 months, post BREXIT.



7 Years on…

Long gone are the days in which having an online presence, as an employer, are optional. A businesses social media profile and their website are often one of the first touch points for a candidate and first impressions matter!

In my last post, I spoke about how quickly online technologies are developing, especially since I completed my Postgraduate Diploma in 2011 and initially drew the following conclusions.

“Although the fundamentals of recruitment will remain the same we need to adopt new methods to attract candidates. Employer branding will become more important than ever as we try to attract talent for the future”.

Seeing beyond the immediate response

One of the biggest frustrations we hear from Hiring Managers is that the ROI (return on investment) against the efforts it takes to keep social media profiles up-to-date with continuous reams of engaging content, is poor at best, within most organisation. Unless you are fortunate enough to have a dedicated marketing team who drive the content for you.

Although we recognise you are probably not going to make 5 high level appointments direct from your Twitter feed this is about investing in your employer brand, via YouTube or Facebook, in order to attract for medium to long-term needs.

Therefore, your online presence should become part of your recruitment process, enhancing your  existing recruitment tools.

For example, this time last year we completed a total re-brand at England Associates and re-invested in our content strategy across all our social media profiles. The short-term results were underwhelming. No direct applications and engagement was also less than expected.

However, when reviewing the last quarters stats we have seen an 80% increase in direct applications in the last 12 months against the previous year across all sources!

Entry interviews for new staff have shown than 100% of our internal hires looked at our website before their first interview and 80% viewed us via at least 1 other social media platform.

Passive Talent

When trying to entice skilled staff from competitors the salary is often what initially catches candidate’s  interest. Although, we all recognise it is often the cultural fit that will retain them for the long-term !

How are you attracting passive candidates?

  • Are you a work-hard-play-hard team who enjoy socialising together? Share pictures of your nights out!
  • Are you more focused on product innovation? Share information on the latest techniques you are using on site.
  • Alternatively, are you both of the above? Posting certain content you feel is appropriate to share on a specific platform.

Your online presence and how you are perceived online allows a candidate, passive or otherwise, to make the decision as to whether you are a potential future employer.

Next time we will take a look at how job boards are changing the dynamics of recruitment.

This post has been written by David Sleeman, any opinions expressed are that of the author, and not necessarily representative of the views held by England Associates.


Does a big House Builder make an attractive employer?

How attractive are the Leading companies within the FTSE Listing?

From my experience, the candidates that I speak to generally have little concern for a company’s FTSE listing. Instead, they are more interested in the culture of a business and the presentment of their potential future manager.

If you are a seeking work, look further than the companies that fall within the highest market capitalisation. Explore into the employers history as a business by finding their employee turnover, past employee success and development, business values and other key points that allow you to discover what it would be like to work under them.

As an employer, inform potential employees that there is more to you than the station you hold within the FTSE. Express how you treat your current and past employees to provide the culture of your business and show how future employees will be expected to be treated. Build on your business values and understand your industry.

From my perspective, recruiting for Commercial Professionals in House Building, it has become very clear that there is a major shortage of Quantity Surveyors and Estimators. The market has become extremely candidate driven with salaries increasing dramatically as a result. It is a tough market if you are a looking to attract new talent, but a great time to start looking if you are a candidate!

Adapted from the original post from GenieBelt

This post has been written by Daniel Harrington, any opinions expressed are that of the author, and not necessarily representative of the views held by England Associates.


Meet The New Specialist Recruiters

We are delighted to introduce 6 new members to the England Associates team. Click on their names to find out more:

Abi Robertson, Alfie Colmer, India James have joined the Training Academy as Apprentices; some of the first people to complete the  new NVQ Level 3 of Recruitment Consultancy.

Melissa Biro , also an apprentice, is joining our Business Support team.

Frankie Skan and Juliette Palmer-Cowell have joined our successful Training Academy, taking part in a 8 week training program for a fast track introduction to recruitment.



Reputable Contractors show market signs of a promising Brexit

Stephen Morley, Specialist Recruitment Consultant in Construction:

It is nice to see that after the collapse of Carillion that other reputable contractors such as Morgan Sindall and Kier are not only demonstrating strong profits but also projecting huge workload in the order book. This hopefully demonstrates what will be economic stability as we go through Brexit and all being well provide jobs for the 3,200 people that are still out of work since the end of Carillion.

Created using Morgan Sindall set for stronger 2018 profits post on the Construction Enquirer.