Moneyball Magic

Grow your own talent, says Recruit UK’s Stuart Leaney.

In 2013 I wrote a blog regarding why companies should grow their own talent and how the money ball concept can be used/adapted to great success.  I believe the concept is relevant today.

Moneyball was the title of a book written by an American author, Michael Lewis, which told the tale of how an underdog baseball team turned itself into a winner, at minimum cost, and simply by employing a different type of analysis from every other team.  By the time the book made the silver screen in 2011, the Moneyball concept had already spread into other sports; and it wasn’t long before it became distilled into the general idea of buying your staff talent at a reasonable price, training and developing it until you’ve helped form an extremely successful individual. In sporting terms this development cost can be recouped through the sale of such assets, less applicable in financial services I grant you, but can you really afford to pay premium price each and every time you recruit? is


Scarce Supply

What got me thinking about all this was a deluge of complaints from UK advisers about the difficulty of getting top-quality staff. In the aftermath of RDR, demand for the very best quality has gone stratospheric. And even when you can find these people, they demand ludicrous salaries and often don’t stay for long.

So where are all the “quality advisers” then?  Ermm, they’re working!! And in most cases bloody hard, too. Where they are not is in the job market.  Yes, there are lots of bancassurance advisers out there – it’s hardly their fault that they’ve been made redundant, most have realistic salary expectations once the long-term benefits are explained to them.

But what strikes me, from the conversations I’m having with various clients, is that the employers want the best (they have to be up to our standard), but what they’re offering their recruits isn’t the best, and so won’t attract the calibre of person they think they can or want.  A bit like Stoke City moaning they can’t sign Lionel Messi.

The Moneyball Principle

Which is where we get back to the Moneyball idea. Some of my clients are grasping the grow-your-own approach to develop their businesses. And believe me, their reasons are simple yet pretty powerful:

1)      Training and developing individuals allows you to have them aligned to your business, your processes, and your standards – and without importing bad habits.

2)      It creates loyalty, trust and respect.

3)      It’s cheaper, longevity is good.

4)      It’s easier, and there’s more candidate availability.

That is not an extensive list, but I would hope an idea as to why some companies adopt the idea of buying low and reaping the rewards (long-term)

I’m in no way trying to tell people not to go for the best advisors. How you recruit and who you target is entirely up to you. But to attract the best talent, you have to have the best opportunity – a unique opportunity, or one which aligns itself perfectly to the type of person you’re trying to recruit.  If not then your opportunity is in the same jumble sale as the rest.

Can you, with hand on heart, say (take off the rose tinted specs) that your firm can offer something better than the myriad of others?  If it doesn’t stand up against the competition, then the only way you’re going to attract that top 10% is by paying them more than anyone else and putting in place a remuneration package that rewards the advisor heavily.  A very expensive process.

What’s also important to remember is that you’re recruiting someone on the basis of a high salary and earnings potential. So who’s to say that individual won’t leave when someone comes along and offers better, because they will get headhunted and their curiosity will find them sat in an interview and may find you’re going through the recruitment process again, and again and again….

The truth about job boards

For most of our candidates, using job boards is not the solution to their job search, in fact our research shows that they can be little more than a time wasting tool. Most job boards have two aspects to them, the ability to search and apply for a job and the “option” of having your details on a CV database.

Many candidates are unaware that hundreds, if not thousands of direct employers and recruitment agents pay to access the CV database and to post jobs. The key things to know about many of the job boards is to be aware of what happens to your details when you register. It often comes as a shock to many that as soon as you type in your personal details and upload your CV that any and everyone who subscribes to that job board now have access to your contact details, your employment history, including who to contact for references. You may think this is no big deal, unfortunately you are now at the hands of some very unscrupulous individuals and companies, some who don’t give two hoots about you and what is done with your CV. Some of them only care about getting your CV (often without your permission) to as many companies as possible, in order to gain “ownership” over your submittal.

Only yesterday, one of our staff spoke to a candidate whose details were on a job board, within an hour they had 10 voice mail messages to sift through, only one of them was about the job they had applied for.

Most job boards will automatically put your details on a CV database for all and sundry to access, the only way to stop this happening is to click an “opt-out” box, if you are going to apply for a job on a job board, our advice is to find and click that box.

Recruit UK only send your details to a client with your permission, unfortunately by having your CV on a job board you are exposing yourself to agencies sending your details on mass to all their clients, without you knowing and without you having any control. Your name, address and job history in the inbox of 10, 20, 30 people. Companies you may not want to work for, positions that you know nothing about and over exposure of your candidature.

We regularly speak to candidates who have put their details on a job board and their current employer finding out due to accessing the job board or from being told by someone else, the implications of this are obvious.

In our experience the jobs available on line offer a very small insight into the real job market, often the jobs most suitable for you need to be sourced by a different approach, many of our clients don’t advertise jobs. The chances are the job you apply for via a job board will not be the job most suitable for you.

Our advice is always the same, job boards can serve their purpose if approached in the correct manner. Search out jobs, apply for the most suitable and keep your CV off of the database. In an ideal world we would suggest using a trusted recruitment company who offer a consultative approach and discuss your specific requirements, suitable opportunities and provide an in-depth background into the clients and what they can offer you. With this information, you can conduct your own due diligence and establish which you would like your tailored CV submitted to.

This blog was written by Stuart Leaney, Director of Recruit UK a Financial Services Recruitment Specialist. Visit to find out more or if you are actively looking to hire or make a career change contact the office on 01179450450 to speak to an experienced recruiter in your area.

How breaking down your degree can help steer you into the right graduate role.

Trying to decide which career to go into when you finish university? You may think there is only a limited ‘type’ of job on offer for you based on your choice of study.

However, figuring out what graduate job you’d like to do doesn’t just come down to your degree subject. For example, in Finance, you will find that your options range from advisor or broker, to HR and marketing.

So, before you dismiss certain job industries all together, be sure to break down the topics you have covered during your studies to help you figure out the graduate opportunities available to you.

By module

A good place for you to start is to write down all of the modules you have covered throughout your degree and then rate them from most to least liked.

Then, when it comes to job hunting you can ensure that your search for companies specialises in the topics that you most enjoy and excel in.

By assessment

After 3 or more years of studying, no doubt you’ll be familiar by now with the assessment types that you do and don’t like.

Whether it be a timed exam, a project, a detailed research report or a presentation. Everyone has their preferences.

Fast paced, time pressured jobs may include a recruitment consultant or a financial broker. Whereas roles that focus on presenting or interacting with people could include a HR role.

However, you are not limited to one sector. Often, you can find similar types of jobs across different sectors.

By ways of learning

You may prefer drawing visuals, reading and writing or explaining topics to others when learning. Deciding which way works best for you may help you discover a career that is going to keep you engaged and focussed in your new role.


If you are interested in a career in Recruitment or would like to find out what we can offer you. Call Recruit UK on 01179450450

Reasons why to use Recruit UK

Have you ever experienced the onslaught of hundreds of nuisance recruiter calls after simply updating your CV on a job board?

During your lunch break you notice 10, 12, 20 missed calls all from recruiters with the perfect job for you… ‘please call back ASAP!’

Perhaps you uploaded your CV onto a job board in the hope of ‘dipping your toe’ into the market to see what the employment market is like?  You may have been browsing jobs, completely unaware that your CV would then become visible to every recruiter and company in the employment market, perhaps even to your own HR department or department manager!

You may have applied for a specific job that you believed matched all of your job search criteria and not realised that unless you request for your CV to be hidden, it is then seen by all and sundry!

Why a recruiter?

Whether you are seriously hunting for a new position or simply weighing up your options by researching the job market, it is advisable to speak to a trusted source within recruitment that has their finger on the pulse.

The right individual will be able to give you an update on the job market.  By talking to you, they can establish what stage you are at in your career, what step you want to make and what your aspirations are.

A good recruiter can give you an update on the job market, the going salary rates, where you sit amongst competition and the types of roles that will suit your skills, experience and career requirements.

Allowing you to avoid the job boards in the first instance!

What are the benefits of using a recruiter?

In a candidate driven market, a good candidate is ‘KING’ to a recruiter.  A recruiter will want to work with you explicitly, leaving them free to introduce you to the companies that they work with as well as give them the opportunity to open new doors with new clients.

If a recruiter believes that they are working with you explicitly, they will work harder on your behalf as they have more chance to earn off the back of working on your behalf.

Dealing with a recruiter explicitly will increase your opportunities, will reduce the chances of your CV being sent to clients/ companies that you are unaware of or wouldn’t want to work for; more importantly it won’t land on your current employers desk!

So which recruiter do you chose?

Pick a recruiter that concentrates or niches in your field.  They will spend all day, every day working with and for the companies that you want to work for.  They will have the correct points of contact to make the right introductions.  They have enough knowledge about your industry to understand you, understand the companies they are submitting you to and the roles that you are being put forward for.

Recruit UK specialises in recruitment within financial services and we work diligently and confidentially in an incestuous industry.  We work with Financial Advisers, Wealth Managers, Investment Managers, Paraplanners, Administrators, Penion Specialists & Compliance professionals who are looking for their next job and we work with leading financial services firms in the UK looking to hire you.

For a confidential conversation about your Career opportunities please call us on 0117 9450 450.

A day in the life of a Recruitment Consultant at Recruit UK

Frankie Pailing, Bristol Office

Describe your career to date-

It has been a whirlwind ride of emotions but on the whole it has been an excellent journey. I started as a mere business developer and have transformed myself into a manager with 4 others under my wing. I have now been here for almost 3 years and not sure where the time has gone. As they say time flies when you’re having fun!

What do you do on a normal day?

I am responsible for the smooth running of the front office desk consultant team whilst also looking after key accounts through 360 recruitment.

What do you enjoy most about working at Recruit UK?

The ability to run your day how you want to, you get given the tools to succeed and you are then your own maker. You can be as successful as you want to be. Great staff, great incentives and bonus structure, as well as a family feel atmosphere to enable you to develop and succeed as a successful recruiter.

What challenges do you face on a daily basis?

Working within the financial services sector is a constant battle as it is a forever changing industry. Not one day is the same, so you have to be able to adapt frequently. Other challenges include getting to the candidate first and finding the best candidates and the best clients.

What do you think are the most important skills needed to do your job?

Main skills needed is the ability to adapt, listen and change. As mentioned the industry changes and so do we. If you are not a good listener or willing to change the work then you will struggle. Plus the desire to want to succeed is probably the biggest skill that cannot be taught.

What would you consider to be a good day in your role?

When everything goes to plan. For example when I have a few final interviews offered, plus some very good interviews in place, plus the team also having some placements start and bringing in some new clients.

What is the best tip you can think of to give someone wanting to do what you do?

Get your head down and work hard, activity really does produce productivity.

Describe Recruit UK in 3 words-

Fun, professional and growing!