Welcome to February 2018

Welcome to February 2018

Eloise's Blog image

We’re here, February, we’ve made it!

January is always a really tough month getting back into work after a break at Christmas. We’re full of food, we’ve got used to lie ins, plus it’s dreary weather and there’s a certain emptiness once the Christmas tree and fairy lights are all packed away.

But, February is often where everything picks up. We’re all caught up, we’re back on track, and for the time being at least, we’ve got a boost of slightly warmer weather and the odd ray of sunshine. Plus, the evenings are starting to stretch out a bit and we have spring firmly on the horizon.

New Vanilla team members

My February is particularly exciting this year because I have two new team members. I’m delighted to announce that we have added Bethany Fardon and Sian Gladman to our team. Bethany actually joined us just before Christmas and we welcomed Sian in January, but they are now trained up in our Vanilla processes and have settled in nicely ready to hit the ground running in February.

Bethany has joined Nikki in our Sales and Marketing recruitment team. She is a bubbly, motivated and organised consultant. She thrives on the recruitment journey and getting a positive result for both candidates and clients.

Sian has come on-board as a senior consultant within our Office recruitment team. She comes to us as a very experienced consultant having worked in recruitment for over 10 years. She is focussed, dedicated and passionate about what she does, and she takes her responsibility very seriously. 

We have a ‘Spotlight on Sian Gladman’ blog post, if you’d like to get to know her better - just click here to have a read.

Both Bethany and Sian bring a great energy to the team and have fitted in seamlessly. I am excited for their futures with us.


The new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), is the hot topic for UK businesses at the moment. It comes in this May and is a new framework to help protect individual’s data and how it is used, processed and stored by businesses.

We have been auditing all our client and candidate data, so we will be ready for the new regulations ahead of time. Some of the activity we have been doing is:

  • Removing all out of date data and personal details on our systems
  • Educating my team on the GDPR changes and how it will impact their roles on a daily basis
  • Contacting all our candidates to verify their marketing preferences
  • Working with our suppliers to make sure they are also compliant
  • Plus, many other systems, forms and process changes

What are you and your business doing to be ready for the 25th May deadline? We have written a separate blog post giving an overview of all the main changes. You can read it by clicking here.

As a business, we have always been very protective of our/your data. We do not and will not sell data to third parties. We only pass data to parties we are actively working with to provide recruitment services. Our full data privacy policy is on our website, you can access it here:


Recruitment market outlook

Kevin Green, Chief Executive at the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC), has said that:

“The number of people finding jobs via recruiters is growing… this suggests that more employers are turning to recruiters to help them fill vacancies as candidate availability continues to fall and recruiting good people becomes that much harder.”

He also comments about more people thinking about changing jobs in the New Year, and that employers need to carefully plan how they are going to retain their existing talent, whilst working on new hires.

This really backs up what we are seeing at Vanilla. Usually, towards the end of a year it is fairly quiet in terms of new permanent jobs coming on but is very busy with temporary roles. Then into January, new permanent and temporary roles are strong as businesses have new budgets, targets and focus.

But, we didn’t get the permanent recruitment lull period in December; new roles have remained strong. The stats from the REC show that permanent recruitment in December was higher than it had been since August, and temp roles were consistent right through from July, not seeing the usual peaks during holiday periods and cool off between.

Accounting and Financial roles are seeing the biggest demand for both temporary and permanent recruitment. And, starting salaries and temp rates across the board are seeing continued growth as candidate availability continues to be squeezed.

What does all of this mean for you? The stats show that businesses have confidence and are expanding and growing, but good candidates are still sparse. As Kevin Green said, employers need to protect their people assets by concentrating on how they retain their employees. And in doing that, they’ll be building a great employer brand that will also help with recruitment. So by thinking internally now, you’ll be benefitting your future recruitment too.


Upcoming events to consider for you or members of your team:


HR Huddle: Succession planning and talent management

Wednesday 25th April 9am, FREE

We host regular events for HR professionals and our next HR Huddle is on Wednesday 25th April 9.00am – 12.00pm in Market Harborough.

The topic this time is ‘Succession Planning and Talent Management’ with our guest speaker Dorothy Day. Dorothy, is an interim HR and Change Practitioner with over 20 years’ experience in commercial businesses from SME’s to large global corporates.

This event is relevant to HR professionals at all levels. Please drop us a line to register your interest or for more information.

For more information or to register for the event, please click here…


Beating the Barriers to Trade: accessing finance and managing FX risk for SME’s

Wednesday 28th February 6pm, FREE

This is a FREE event hosted by ACCA Leicestershire with Halo Financial


  • Learn how you can overcome two of the more common barriers that prevent SMEs from seizing international opportunities
  • With expert advisors across government and industry
  • Find out how to prepare your businesses for international expansion without falling victim to unforeseen risks
  • For accountants in practice working with SME businesses, get the insight needed to guide clients past the obstacles to growth, as well as techniques to help explore appropriate risk management strategies
  • This seminar features a panel of speakers addressing the key barriers to trade, the associated risks, and new opportunities presented by expanding overseas.

More info and registration details can be found by clicking here…


Ask an Expert - Peter Finn, Chief Operating and Finance Officer, UK Space Agency

Thursday 22nd March 6.15pm, £15 per person


An ACCA event with the UK Space Agency. Hear from Peter Finn, Chief Operating and Finance Officer, UK Space Agency, when he is interviewed by Glen Collins, Head of Advisory at ACCA in this chat show style event.

This event is your chance to gain business insight from a UK Government department at the heart of innovation and the future economy. You will be able to put forward your own questions when Peter takes questions from the audience. You can also tweet your questions to @ACCA_UK using #ACCAASK

The event will include wine and canapés, which is why there is a £15 per person charge for tickets. 

More info and registration details can be found by clicking here…


And that is it for this month, I just want to end by wishing you a great February. Do drop me a line if you have any feedback about my blog posts or you’d like to chat about recruitment.

Many thanks