INTERVIEW In the hiring line

Over the past 20 years, the recruitment sector has evolved from a niche industry to a major cog in the employment machine. In that time, Chamber patron SF Recruitment has established its reputation and position as a leading specialist recruiter in the Midlands. Its Regional Director for the East Midlands, Dominic Syalon, talks to Business Network about the journey.

Recruitment is big business. The industry, as a whole, is a real success story which has seen it become one of the UK economy’s fastest-growing sectors. Since 2008, the number of recruitment agencies

operating in the UK has grown, on average, by 27% a year. And with the Recruitment and Employment Confederation predicting that 56% of all the UK’s vacancies in the next 12 months will be filled by agencies, the role of the recruiter in driving the employment marketplace is pivotal. How the sector continues to go from strength-to-

strength boils down to its ability to embrace change and maximise its unique position during periods of economic uncertainty. Identifying individuals with the right skills is becoming

increasingly important for businesses of all sizes, and this is where specialist recruiters can add real value to their clients. This is something that Dominic Syalon passionately

believes in. As Regional Director for the East Midlands for Chamber

Patron SF Recruitment, Dominic has been at the sharp end of recruitment for more than 25 years and in that time, has seen at first-hand how the sector has evolved. However, it could all have been so different. A career in recruitment wasn’t in his life plan, but he got

bit by the bug after graduating with a degree in Law from Nottingham Trent University, and hasn’t looked back since. He said: “I am a believer in people falling into careers

that suit them. Everyone has a set of skills that makes them suitable to certain roles and companies. “I certainly fell into recruitment, like most people in my

teams have seemed to. From a young age I wanted to pursue a career in law but having gained some work experience in the industry, I decided it didn’t give me the people interaction I thought it would. “My law degree has helped me become a little more

detail focused for sure, but deep down I think I have always known that a sales environment would be where I’d thrive. “Recruitment has given me the blend of what I was

looking for. “I get to meet people and understand businesses of all

shapes and sizes. Smaller trade organisations, up to multinationals. Businesses that are being readied for sale; businesses that have been run by the same family for over 100 years. “I love how every brief gives me a different set of

company objectives and a different industry climate, but the answer to the question at hand is always going to come from a person, the right person. I love that. “So, I may have fell into it but it’s now quite clear that it

seemed to be a sector that I was destined for.” A Londoner by birth, Dominic has called Nottingham

home for 20 years and heads up SF Recruitment’s East Midlands office in his adopted city, where he leads a team

52 business network December 2019/January 2020

of 24 high-performing recruitment consultants. He also personally recruits senior interim, contract and financial project opportunities across the region. “After graduating from university, my parents

encouraged me to get a summer job and I managed to secure a temporary resourcing role for a local recruitment firm in London,” Dominic continued. “I was instantly fascinated by the process of recruitment,

how much it revolved around people and the interaction it brought with such a range of clients. “Having studied in Nottingham, I decided to move back

to the city and secured a trainee consultant opportunity with SF. “It’s a very rewarding career choice, in a number of ways,

for those with the right people skills and work ethic. Nothing beats the call to a candidate to say that they’ve got the job. “It has taken a huge amount of hard work, dedication,

sacrifice and some luck along the way. “I have been fortunate to progress through the

organisation over a 15-year period, from initially excelling through hard work as a consultant, before moving into management and then into my current role as Regional Director of our Nottingham/Derbyshire operation. “What I can say is that I wouldn’t be where I am today

without working with some incredibly talented recruiters who took the time to mentor and inspire me. “I was also pushed out of my comfort zone by my

directors at the time who saw something in me. I believe it’s important through a career to not shy away from roles that challenge you and that everyone should try to work in a pressured, people-orientated environment.” The financial crisis of 2008 was the catalyst for the boom in the recruitment sector.

Dominic manages a team of 24 dedicated, high- performing recruitment professionals

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