HOW TO DO THINGS RIGHT IN RECRUITMENT

HOW TO DO THINGS RIGHT IN RECRUITMENT
RECRUITMENT is what makes the world go round. In a world of LinkedIn sales sharks though, one of Queensland's oldest recruitment companies has decided to do things differently to maintain its edge.

Forget the traditional three Rs. Davidson Group has spent the past 12 months rebranding, redefining and repacking its offering to accommodate its large expansion plans.

During this time, the 24-year-old Brisbane-based company has doubled its staff via new offices in Sydney, Melbourne and Auckland, acquired a technology recruitment company, and partnered with an English entrepreneur and investor.

The team is now comprised of 130 staff working on recruitment, consulting and HR across the disciplines of executive, corporate, projects and operations, and technology and trades.

Davidson Group CEO Bruce Davidson (pictured) says he viewed the step-up as necessary in a recruitment landscape - and overall workforce - which will take no prisoners.

The business grew by over $40 million during the last financial year, and is now expected to turn over more than $100 million this financial year, which would make it one of the largest privately-owned recruitment firms in Australia and New Zealand.

Big changes came about for Davidson Group after a board strategy meeting in late 2012.

"At the time, Sydney and Melbourne markets were slowing down and the Asian economy was ramping up," says Davidson.

"On top of that, we continued to see early research indicating that the future world of work was under threat with some reports showing a significant amount of jobs will disappear within the decade as technology advances continue.

"I remember we looked around the table and realised that we, as a team, had the expert guidance as we are all about people and finding great outcomes for people.

"We realised we needed to adopt the same approach we take with our clients and candidates for our own company. As a people-led organisation, it was ultimately on our shoulders to navigate a solution for going forward.

"We saw this as a chance to grow and change - why continue doing what everyone was doing? This was our chance to redefine our offering."

One of the first steps forward was to expand into New Zealand and acquire one of Australia's most-awarded technology recruitment specialists, ITCOM, in July last year.

The purchase allowed Davidson Group to move into ITCOM's markets of Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane, making the company better equipped to tackle the leadership suite in a growing digital space.

"With technology playing such an important role in terms of business transformation, and with the emergence of digital disruption, we responded to the demand of our clients to expand our footprint and offer an international technology recruitment offering," says Davidson.

"Before we acquired ITCOM, technology was 20 per cent of our business and now it's around 50 per cent."

Davidson Group's evolution is being backed by Miles Hunt, a London-based entrepreneur who came on board as chairman earlier this year.

Hunt started international specialist staffing group Empresaria in the UK almost 20 years ago, which is now listed on the London Stock Exchange.

"Miles' vast experience at a global level has provided us with knowledge of international trends in our industries and input into our growth strategy," says Hunt.

"His stake in our growing business shows his tremendous confidence in our growth plans and we can't wait to see what the future brings from this collaboration.

"Ultimately, the next year is about putting into action everything we've been planning for and continuing to build on our specialised fields."


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