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When Kate Prior launched face2face Recruitment, she held her first meeting with her two staff members while sitting on the office floor.
The furniture hadn’t yet arrived, but that wasn’t going to stop Kate from moving full steam ahead.
Within a week she had made her first placement, for another recruitment company. “We took that to be a good omen,” says Kate.
Fifteen years later, Kate has a team of 24 and face2face has worked more than 14,000 jobs and placed more than 6,000 people into positions. Although locally based, the company works nationally.
Kate was inspired to open her own business believing that matching jobseekers to employees is about, as her company’s name implies, face-to-face recruitment.
“As a senior consultant working for other recruiters, I saw more and more automated systems being introduced, which created a gap in the market for personal interaction,” says Kate.
“The companies I was working for tended to focus on targets and numbers, which meant recruiters were driven by quick wins. This meant some jobseekers who really needed more time and assistance were sometimes overlooked.”
Instead of adopting the model used by most recruitment companies, developed around a commission structure, Kate paved her own path, placing people front and centre.
“I believe there’s a job for everyone in the market,” says Kate. “It’s our job to think creatively and work hard to find that job. Our recruiters are motivated to help all jobseekers, including mature-age workers, parents returning to work, those just entering the workforce, those made redundant and those wanting a career change.”
face2face’s approach includes moving beyond written qualifications and looking at a jobseeker’s soft skills—including people skills, communications skills and emotional intelligence—to uncover positions they may not have thought about.
“This is great for employers too because they can unknowingly miss out on candidates with the potential to add amazing value to their workplace. Our experience has proven that a person with the right attitude and an aptitude to learn quickly is often a better choice than someone with only the right hard and/or technical skills,” says Kate.
As with any business operating for a decade-and-a-half, face2face has had its ups and downs.
Ups include multiple awards, such as the national award for recruitment services at the Australian Small Business Champion Awards 2019, the only ACT company to win in any category.
face2face also placed finalist in the Business Entrepreneur, Business of the Decade and Business Growth Award categories. Last year, the company placed finalist in the 2019 Telstra Business Awards, Medium and Making Waves category (ACT).
Kate has also published a book—Resume Success Secrets—which quickly rose to #1 on Amazon in its category.
In line with face2face ’s commitment to giving back to the community, Kate has donated 3,000 copies to 60 public libraries, Communities at Work, Carers ACT and all jobseekers who come in for an interview with the company’s talent manager.
“I wrote the book as an easy-to-use tool for anyone in the job market, focusing on the questions we’re asked over and over again as recruiters,” says Kate. “It’s loaded with tips and tricks, including how to stay calm during an interview, whether to include a photo on your resume, and how to handle cover letters.”
In dealing with challenging times over the years, Kate’s philosophy has always been to stay positive and forward-thinking.
“We’ve had to surmount hurdles. It’s an inevitable part of running a business, but success lies with accepting change and taking the opportunity to improve your offering and the business itself,” says Kate. “We’re looking forward to another 15 years of face-to-face recruitment.”
This editorial was created in partnership with face2face Recruitment. For more information on sponsored partnerships, click here.
Feature image: Kerrie Brewer.