A different approach
Constructive isn’t your run-of-the-mill recruitment agency. For one thing, they don’t focus on KPIs. “We’re not a business looking to become the next mini Hays or Randstad. There are plenty of other people in the market trying to do that,” explains Giles Keay, the agency’s Managing Director.
“We are quality-driven … we don’t want to become a machine that just has to worry about KPIs. So we don’t focus on [them] at all. For us, it’s about outcomes,” said Giles, adding that the focus was on getting candidates in front of clients. “It’s about understanding those clients and candidates properly and actually operating the consulting way.”
Onwards and upwards
With the agency looking to expand into new technical sectors within the existing three verticals (built environment, infrastructure and resources) they cater for, Giles said: “We’re looking forward proactively, but it’s very much about those sort of strategic moves as opposed to just bums on seats.”
With a footprint that initially encompassed four locations across Australia, Constructive have now consolidated to Sydney and Melbourne, with an additional regional hub that will be grown from head office to look after WA, QLD, NT and to look at potential expansion to New Zealand.
This reflects a shift that Giles is seeing, wherein “probably half our candidate interviewing now is done through video conferencing rather than face-to-face. We just don’t get them coming in to the office like we used to in the past.”
Up in the clouds
It’s a far cry from technology offered by the proprietary-owned software Constructive had purchased in 2006. “You’ve got your depreciation of assets that needs to go down,” explained Giles. “As soon as I felt that had depreciated enough and we’d realised the value from it, we moved on.”
It was at this point that Constructive moved onto the core JobAdder platform around 2013, having used JobAdder as a job posting tool since 2005.
“We spent the final three years with our previous ATS, just frustrated…it was clunky, didn’t do what we wanted, was server rather than cloud-based, with no flexibility…it was just a horrible system to use,” recalled Giles.
“We knew we wanted to move to a cloud-based software. And so we went out there and investigated,” said Giles. Being an existing JobAdder user meant the team had confidence in the software, but it went beyond that.
“The one thing that I know is that consultants will probably only use about 40% of a system. If we bring [something more complicated] the consultants are just going to look at it and it’s going to turn into a phone directory. If it’s too hard, I won’t use it,” he added.
Giles also appreciated JobAdder’s integrations with platforms such as AskNicely, Xero and Referoo, calling them “brilliant. It has enabled us to actually implement different strategies and activities that we want to do.”
Transitioning across to JobAdder was easy, said Giles. “It’s a very intuitive system. So for the consultants picking it up, I’d say within one month, they were very familiar with it.”
He points to JobAdder’s search functionality being a differentiator as well. “The ability for us to get through that size of a database so quickly, I think it’s fantastic. That’s been a really big help.”
The key to a better recruitment platform comes down to partnerships. “I think JobAdder are very good at listening to ideas,” said Giles. “If we partner with you, then when the product comes out the other end, it’s obviously going to be better aligned to what we need.” He added that there aren’t many SaaS companies he’s taken this approach with.
Constructive’s eyes are firmly fixed on improving quality of service, compliance and retention. “When we started the business in 2003, there were probably 5-10 operators in the field. It’s probably a few hundred now. So all those candidates out there are getting approached by plenty more people. It’s different challenges that we’re facing [and] you’ve got to adapt.
“Technology can help with some of that. I certainly think that JobAdder is the best we’ve seen on the market. We’re definitely going to be staying with it.”