A business built on authentic relationships
“My USP is me.”
These are the words of Kelly Dunn, Founder and Managing Director of KD Recruitment Limited, who is also a winner of the “Brightest Star” title at the prestigious Star Women in Business Awards.
Kelly’s recruitment business journey is an aspiring one – especially for the many budding entrepreneurs looking to set up their own recruitment business in the future. Where did it all start?
Having spent over ten years in recruitment before setting off on her solo journey, Kelly worked for Hays as a Senior Recruitment Manager. She combined her industry experience with her intense passion to become a pure specialist in her area to develop KD Recruitment Limited, who are, today, experts in the recruitment of permanent and fixed term commercial roles within a wide range of sectors across North and East Yorkshire
REC research – a key player in building credible business relationships
Clients often look to their recruitment partners for business advice, including labour market trends and regional intelligence. So, having access to up-to-date market insights is critical to building credibility among current and future clients.
At first, Kelly’s only reference point was her own recruitment experience.
“I really struggled in the first 12 months to be able to give them honest market data.” After joining the REC as a Corporate member, Kelly was able to get access to real-time analysis on hiring intentions, permanent and temporary recruitment, vacancies and earnings, as well as annual reports showing the shape of the UK’s recruitment industry.
“I have found that the information I get from REC, especially the jobs report, which I fill out every month, is really useful, because when I’m sat there in front of the clients, I can talk to them about real-time information. I now have access to the regional one which is great.”
The REC publishes monthly jobs reports titled JobsOutlook and *Report on Jobs, as well as annual Recruitment Industry Trends report, and regional Workforce Intelligence reports in partnership with Emsi. These reports are free for REC members, and are designed to be accessible, practical and easy to use.
“…and being part of REC, to now have their information and support, has made a massive difference to me because I know the information I’m giving my clients is accurate. It’s like having the support and information that I used to have at Hays, even though I’m now a small business, which is brilliant. It means I can still keep that personal contact with all my clients and give them really credible information.”
With a lot of clients in manufacturing with international employees, Kelly also found REC’s Brexit workshops quite informative. Having access to the practical guidance in these practical seminars (which were free for REC members), Kelly was able to advise her clients, especially around the immigration status of international workers.
Be visible – meeting people work better than calls
Kelly found that forging business relationships through face-to-face interactions worked far better than making phone calls. Kelly started attending networking events, and later began presenting at events – telling tales of her recruitment journey and educating her peers on topical matters such as staff retention, and recruitment campaigns.
“I’ve found that the success of what we’ve been doing is getting out there and meeting people face-to-face as opposed to the old-fashioned way of cold-calling.”
As the face of KD Recruitment, Kelly also does her fair share of giving back to the community. An avid advocate of women in business, Kelly is actively involved in the planning committee for International Women’s Day, organising workshops and business surgeries to support the community. She also hosts workshops at local schools inspiring students and educating them on putting a good CV together and preparing for interviews.
“It’s trying to get them engaged at this early stage so when they’re at university or applying for apprenticeships and ready to go out to work, they are doing it the right way. They will know what a recruitment agency is for and will know how to get decent work experience. So, by the time they’ve graduated they’re the perfect candidate for us.”
Kelly’s vision of delivering a personalised bespoke service to each one of her clients lies at the heart of KD Recruitment’s growth. Being adaptable to the changing needs of her clients makes her business model tenable. Kelly says having support from other people is key – especially having a mentor to talk to about your challenges, share your experiences, learn new things and ask for help. KD Recruitment’s voyage to growth has been purely organic and is a brilliant testament of how one person’s determination is all it needs to succeed.
Original article published by REC. (Recruitment and Employment Confederation)