I Love Recruitment Competition Winner – well the dogs I get to meet for one thing!

Yes in agricultural recruitment  you cannot be afraid of dogs! You meet them, usually before the owners in all  shapes and sizes, covered in various depths of mud. Some like their owners  are genuinely pleased to see you and grateful for your visit… others are more  wary, eyeing you from the safety of the farm office or kitchen door whilst  you pick your way through the farm yard. Sometimes and thankfully rarely they  seem to regard you as a menace and bark their dislike at you on sight!

Thankfully I love dogs and view gaining  their trust and respect as a challenge and not something to fear. OK enough of the analogies!

I am a labour provider (a gangmaster if you like), providing permanent  and temporary workers to the agricultural sector. From one tractor driver to  100 leek pickers.  My job is as rewarding as it is challenging and here are some of the reasons why I love it!

It is all about the people.  Agricultural recruitment is not faceless; it is personable and full of personalities! Discussions are not had in fancy offices but round a kitchen  table or across boxes of potatoes or leeks. You shake a lot of muddy hands,  and meet passionate , hardworking labour users who expect a professional , efficient flexible service

It is all about the challenge.  Agricultural recruitment is   not 9-5, it is 7days a week with early starts, it is hugely weather dependant   and staff are often required a short notice, keeping an eye on the weather  soon becomes an obsession.

Referrals. Whether these come from  candidates or clients they are always great and are recruitments way of  patting you on the back and saying, “Well done you are doing a good job.”

Every day is a school day! From what size onions Tesco are accepting this autumn, to the pros and cons of  outdoor pig units and how global wheat prices will effect livestock farmers   there is always something to learn. Every season is slightly different and   talking to clients to understand the pressures and issues they face is vital.

The temps. You are only as good as  your candidates. I know we all probably say it but my candidates work hard,   do long hours in all weathers and are very loyal. Time talking to each person  is time well spent, for feedback on a job and to tease out skills and   experiences. Every day you find out something new about the people who   represent you.

My colleagues – We all work hard, and we are all driven and like many recruitment companies up and down the   country our offices is full to the brim with big personalities. We feed off   each other and laugh out loud every day!

The great outdoors – being able to   spend my time outdoors and follow the seasons effects on the land, to chat to   my clients whilst walking a field, to meeting the new arrivals at a pig unit,   face my fear each December… turkeys (I still get flashbacks of standing in   the middle of field surrounded by hundreds of turkeys getting closer and   closer… whilst trying to remain calm and professional!)

Never complacent -My farmers in   the East of England have had a hard year this year; the great British Weather   has been very testing. At this time of year arable farmers are trying to get   the last of the crop in, they are at least ten days behind , and conscious   that weather is closing in, to quote one client “I am just trying to get   finished whilst keeping what is left of my sanity!” Livestock farmers face   the knock on from high wheat prices and the challenge of finding local knowledgeable   staff. These issues and many others they face will keep me focused and   challenged to provide the best possible service so that I know that staffing   is one thing that won’t keep them up at night.

And finally of course –the dogs!  Jasper the cocker spaniel at a fruit farm in Suffolk who rushes you in to the   kitchen and then goes to great pains to drag his bed into the garden – just   in case you try and take it away with you and Molly the lovely black lab in   Norfolk who insists on emptying the waste paper bin and bringing  you selected bits of chewed paper and not   forgetting Phoebe who always gives a warm welcome and returns to her bed   under Rosemary (the farm secretary’s desk) once she is happy that everyone is  sitting down with cup of tea .

All of the above is why I love recruitment!

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