SEEK did something quite unexpected yesterday. They hosted a very pleasant, convivial, civilised and not-at-all-brash garden party at Alberton House the “SEEK Estate” to host a range of clients, recruitment and corporate, to say thanks for our business. How jolly decent of you SEEK and thanks for having us all along.
Now this was no legendary SEEK Blue Ball thronged with roaring recruiters, chest thumping suits and tottering tipsily on high heels. This really was an indication of where we have come as an industry since the heady boom days. The recession put paid to the Blue Ball, the flash venues and manically drumming Japs fading into a distant memory from 2008 as SEEK’s swollen coffers started to run as dry as those of their recruitment clients. This was altogether a far more genteel occasion. Recruiters are still in the process of hauling themselves back out of the recession. No doubt work is picking up significantly and revenues are returning, but there are still a multitude of wounds to lick and heal, which came through in the polite and reserved chit chat that characterised the evening. No more the sneering gloating over vanquished competitors, more like a few sideways glances and acknowledged mutual respect between competing firms who are all really just glad to still be in recruitment.
But for the wider recruitment masses, it was suggested by JP from Seek (who is now to be known as John-Paul as he was introduced by his new GM), that the Blue Ball will return. So we will once again have a night of heavy drinking and general letting-hair-down behaviour. Then we will really see if the recruitment industry leopard has managed to change its spots, or as I suspect is just currently wearing a clever spotless disguise in preparation to cast it aside when the boom returns.
The evening was also an opportunity for SEEK to introduce their aforementioned new GM. Take a bow Janet Faulding and welcome to New Zealand’s recruitment community. Janet has a background in running radio stations but did some online stuff as GM for Vouchermate. We had a chat and she seemed pretty cool, although introducing her new account manager John as a fellow Pom, when he is from Zimbabwe, didn’t go down so well!
It seems like The Whiteboard divided opinion last night as well, which is excellent news and just what I am trying to achieve – a bit of debate in our industry. To be fair, there were many positive comments from some readers of the blog, and just one that suggested I was pushing things too far in a small market – but it’s all good and we’re all entitled to an opinion. I have to take my hat off to the Manpower crew who were very magnanimous despite the panning received by many commentators a couple of weeks ago.
On that note the blog went past the 10,000 views mark last week, so thanks for all of your reading, especially those of you who contribute, comment and join in the debate on issues in our industry.
So there we have it. No juicy gossip or salacious details on misbehaving recruiters this week I’m afraid. I must say a big cheers to the guys from Hays, Recruit IT, Madison, and Automotive Employment, who carried the evening on in Snapdragon in the Viaduct. It was a great night, but I really am all talked out, so I’m going to slink off to find a coffee and hopefully something abundantly greasy that I really shouldn’t be eating, but will be so good… I heard something on the radio yesterday about a battered sausage covered with chips and wrapped in bacon… a Piggy-Chip-Dog.
Mmm, that’ll be the ticket…aren’t hangovers great?