Recruitment partnership launches for unemployed event professionals
By Liz Sinclair, director, esprecruitment and Trevor Foley, chief connector, tfconnect
We have all read the many stories published over the last few months about how many jobs have been made redundant in our industry. This has led to an excessive number of event professionals at all levels, from our industry workforce of 600,000, out of work. As no financial support seems forthcoming from the government, as leading industry recruiters for this sector, we couldn’t just stand by without trying to make a difference.
We are going out to the employers of the market, to help fund a new industry initiative to support our unemployed colleagues across the industry. This initiative is called New Model Army (NMA), in recognition of the fact that in the current marketplace there will need to be a different style of work force for the foreseeable future. There may need to be more contracts, rather than permanent staff and more freelancers, parachuted in to deliver events and more digital expertise to pivot business towards a new style of hybrid event.
Those people who have found themselves without a job due to redundancy need to be supported. We wanted to go beyond pure recruitment solutions, as support comes in many forms; upskilling unemployed event professionals, continued engagement with the industry so that our former colleagues want to return, as well as more practical solutions like access to an accountant for new freelancers to get advice. We also want to create a website with a database of people who are available immediately with varied events experience. NMA hopes to receive funding from the industry so that we can support the following services:
- Outplacement webinars –Practical workshops to equip people with the skills needed to maximise their chances of securing the right next move.
- One-to-one support - Personal coaching and support from one of our professional consultants for more senior event professionals.
- Job search toolkit - A comprehensive Job Search Toolkit to support those candidates who can’t attend webinars.
- CV review - Our consultants will review the CVs of those facing redundancy and provide constructive feedback and assistance on preparing your CV for the events market.
- Keeping in-touch and engaged with the events industry - A regular industry newsletter/podcast to keep those out of work from our industry abreast of what is going on in the industry and engaged in the market.
- Online training - A series of online training modules created by us and external suppliers to upskill those that are waiting for their next exhibition/event opportunity – IT skills, sales skills, online marketing skills, strategy sessions and developing digital skills. Provided for free or subsidised, if from external suppliers.
- An online presence – we will create a database of employee’s ready to work on a freelance or permanent basis which employers looking to recruit will have access to directly.
- Access to an Accountant - to help those who go down the freelance route with free advice from an accountant and help to get set up.
- Regular online socials – time to network and keep in touch with event professionals in the same boat.
- A hardship fund - for interviews, if someone is struggling to pay to get to an interview or a helping hand for extenuating circumstances in their life
- A mental health helpline
We recognise that it is tough financially for many companies in the industry, but those companies that are able to donate to this corporate responsibility initiative will get a comprehensive list of benefits and savings on recruitment, that will last until December 2021, which should cover their donation now.
esprecruitment and tfconnect have over 35 years of event recruitment experience between them, as well as many years working hands on in the industry. We have all the contacts and expertise to ensure that these services are delivered efficiently and professionally and will try to ensure that with engagement and upskilling, we don’t end up with a massive skills shortage next year.
Trevor Foley of tfconnect says “There are so many talented people being made redundant by companies that are genuinely upset at having to let them go. We are gathering the most amazing information & references on these individuals. We want to make sure that the strength & speed of our recovery, when it comes, can be maximised for the benefit of all event companies and for those talented folks who we want back in our businesses”.