Marching on This month Recruitment Matters magazine spoke to Steve Bentham-Bates, who won the Eileen Simpson Award for Outstanding Contribution at the 2012 IRP Awards.
Name: Steve Bentham-Bates
Agency: Regular Forces Employment Association
RM: How did you get into recruitment?
SB-B: I was an RAF recruiter for two periods, 1979-82 and 1992-96, helping people to find work within the armed forces. Now I help not just the RAF but RN and army people too, to help them find worthwhile careers on their discharge. Before recruitment I worked in HR in the RAF.
RM: What do you enjoy about it?
SB-B: The bit I enjoy most is helping people to get a successful job placement. Today I’ve taken a day’s leave to look into a drop-in centre that is also trying to help veterans find work. It’s such a worthwhile thing to do.
RM: What are the challenges?
SB-B: The old days of apprenticeships have mostly gone in this country but the great thing about the army is that it trains you. The people I deal with have some highly specialist skills. The biggest sector is engineering.
RM: What’s your most memorable placement?
SB-B: I sent a former RAF general engineer out to do some sheet metal work in the Australian outback a few years ago for AUS$2,000 (£1,380) a week. That was the best paying placement I’ve ever got and it felt pretty good.
RM: Do you think people have misconceptions of the recruitment industry?
SB-B: Some people just think recruiters are in it to make a fast buck but if you’re doing the job properly, you’re finding the right person for the right job and everyone gets something out of the equation.
RM: Do you have any tips for people coming in to the industry?
SB-B: Use all the available training. The IRP provides all sorts of courses. RM: What would you do if you weren’t doing this job? SB-B: I’d win the lottery and do this job for free!