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Sara hooks the right people for the job

Sara hooks the right people for the job

A rural recruitment agency, which relocated from Tyneside to north Northumberland, has hooked a major client on its doorstep.

Sara Eke Recruitment's link-up with iconic Alnwick-based fishing tackle manufacturer Hardy and Greys coincides with the agency's second best year in its decade-long history and it's best performance since the start of the economic downturn in 2008.

Sara Eke, who founded her business in Tynemouth in 2004, moved to Rock near Alnwick four years ago and has found a ready market for her services locally. She still works with clients in North and South Tyneside, but is now also placing candidates in north Northumberland, as well as throughout the rest of the UK.

She said: "When the recession started in 2008, I was only recruiting people for permanent roles but it was clear the jobs market was changing, so I began supplying temporary staff.

"Employers are increasingly looking for this kind of flexibility and it means I have not only been able to ride out the recession, but to expand my business at the same time. Having this extra string to my bow, plus my trusted reputation, means that employers and job seekers keep coming back."

Sara's ethos is to provide a personal and professional service to both businesses and candidates looking for the right job, and dealing with everyone the same way that she would liked to be treated herself. Key to that is choosing the right candidates at the right time to fit in with an employers' culture.

It's a method that has paid dividends in her work with Hardy and Greys.

Hardy's Operations and HR director, Dave Douglas, said: "You find out about people when your back is against the wall and you need help quickly - and that's how I came across Sara".

"Her response was immediate, structured, organised and successful. Sara knows the local market and has a breadth of customers covering a range of industry sectors, and a candidate base that supports those sectors. When faced with something new, she gets up the learning curve very quickly, and above all, the contact she maintains with her clients is excellent."

The first person Sara recruited for the firm was a young man from Alnwick, who was travelling to an IT job in South Tyneside every day. He is now working in IT for Hardy and Greys and can walk to work instead of forking out a fortune on fuel every day. Former office administration assistant Lucy Gourley was also appointed to the fishing tackle firm as a Marketing Co-ordinator through Sara's services.

Lucy, 23, from Shilbottle, said: "This is the biggest opportunity I've had in my career so far. It was a great process to go through with Sara's company and I feel it's the biggest catch of my life."

Ten years on from her launch, Sara's statistics show that she has placed almost 400 people in permanent jobs with total salaries in excess of &pound6 million.

She said: "Some of my first candidates are still in the jobs I placed them in. Others are now hiring staff themselves and have come back to me to help them find the right people. Finding the right job can totally change someone's life and an important part of my role is to act as an advisor to both my candidates and my clients."

In addition to providing candidates for permanent jobs and temporary roles ranging from cover for sickness, holidays, longer term posts and maternity leave, Sara offers a CV service.

She said: "I thought it would be used only by people looking for new jobs, but has also been used by companies for submission for tendering and profile purposes."


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