The move from agency to recruitment

Simon Hadfield
By Simon Hadfield | 3 March 2021
Simon Hadfield

Simon Hadfield, managing partner, DMCG Global in Sydney.

In 2016 I made the move from agency life into recruitment. I had a good relationship with Karen Taylor at Hourigan International and we had spoken off and on over a number of years about my joining.

I distinctly remember saying to her that it was certainly on my radar but maybe it was something I would do in several years. Her retort? Simon, we may not want you in the future as we want consultants who are still on an upward trajectory and hungry. That was quite grounding at the time but very understandable.

I loved my agency career, however, as I’d never done anything else, I was looking for a change. After a few years in media, it seemed I had left my client side move a little late and the time had come to recruit.

I feel as though I’d always been good with people and genuinely enjoyed assisting in their growth and development, often on a personal level as well as professional. I knew how creative and media agencies operated as well as having a good grasp on marketing skillsets and what made a good marketer. The stage was set.

The reason I’m sitting here telling you this is that I get asked a lot as to what it’s like. Well, it’s pretty tough. The truth of the matter is that few companies want to pay for your service as there is a view they can and should do it themselves. It is not that simple.

People are the most important commodity of any business (as we all know) however they are often neglected, or the time assigned to find a replacement or new hire is most often pushed to the bottom of the to do list. It is then rushed or half heartedly executed producing the wrong outcome or a last-minute urgent call to a recruiter after 6 weeks of false starts.

Great talent need time to be found, they need to be nurtured through the process and provided with a great experience end to end. People buy people and culture.

The outcome is that they feel engaged and motivated by their new company and eager to give them everything they’ve got. Planning out the interview process, retaining momentum and keeping all candidates well informed and engaged is paramount – you’d be surprised how often this doesn’t happen.

Working closely with a good talent partner can be worth it’s weight in gold, you build a mutual respect and we get to know and understand your business.

Just to make things even harder I have recently opened the Sydney office of a global business specialising in creative, media, marketing, tech and digital.