November 2017 IPA

18 APAC / November 2017 , 1710AP01 All Safe. All the Time! IPA has operated since 1984, and its objective thenwas to provide customised recruitment services. Paul Barbaro tells us more about the company and whether its vision is being achieved. Built with a vision to provide customised recruitment services, today, the company services clients from Government organisations, multi-nationals, along with a broad spread of small to medium businesses across broad sectors from construction, banking, FMCG, mining, hospitality and professional services sector. Paul describes where the firm’s offices are located and what the benefits are of being based in the locations are. “Here at IPA, our office locations are designed to be close to our major customers with the view of developing intimate business relationships. IPA specialises in a variety of areas; notably Temporary Labour Hire in both Blue and White Collar, Permanent Recruitment, Senior Appointments. Additionally, IPA also works in Diversity Recruitment and Government Recruitment.” Within the recruitment industry, there are many companies vying to be the best and attract the best business, therefore, it is important that IPA stands out and is seen as the best possible option for clients looking for work, or companies looking to hire. Paul remarks on the non-profit side of the organisation, and how the firm are genuinely able to offer an assortment of different services, thanks to its partners. “Crucially, are owned by a not for profit organisation, and our profits are directed back to communities, therefore we are profit for purpose. This is unique, as most of our competitors have either shareholders or directors who retain profits rather than re-investing in the communities in which they operate. Through our parent company we therefore partner with organisations who provide services to minority groups, disadvantaged women, local sporting groups and a myriad of other organisations to assist in developing communities which are collaborative with service providers, inclusive of all different people, and ultimately working together to improve economies, employment outcomes, and to improve the livelihood of people. “In addition, our sister brands provide a suite of related services including disability recruitment, employment training, unemployment recruitment services, aged care and retirement living, so we are genuinely a one stop shop in terms of the services we can provide the broader community.” Significantly, IPA treats each new client individually, approaching new projects from a unique point of view. The company pays great attention to detail, as Paul alludes to, ensuring the best possible outcome for clients. The environment must be safe for the client or the firm will walk away from the deal, something Paul is keen to point out. “Regarding our clients, our commitment to safety is at the heart of our business model – All Safe, All the Time. Therefore, we conduct thorough site inspections prior to putting anyone into a role to ensure they are in a safe working environment. We have walked away from financially lucrative deals on the basis they did not represent an adequately safe environment for our candidates. We never compromise on this aspect of our service. Additionally, we work in collaboration with our clients to ensure we deliver tailored recruitment expertise to suit the specific business needs of each and every company we engage with.” Recently, technology has become a big factor influence in the recruitment sector, and Paul suggests that there is also a shortage of talent around. IPA is always looking to invest in technology, but its personal appeal is what is vital to the success of the firm. “Technology is the biggest influence impacting the recruitment industry along with competition and a shortage of talent. The reality however, is that recruitment in its traditional format, has weathered many disrupters throughout time, and continues to thrive. IPA has embraced many technology platforms, and will continue to invest in innovative measures to enhance our ability to engage with customers using technology platforms, but our ability to engage with people will always be at the heart of who we are, and why we will be different.” Recruitment is an ever changing industry, with changes in rewards and initiatives happening all the time. Paul tells us what developments he foresees within the sector, notably firms with upcoming specialist sectors, and how he predicts IPA will adapt around these. Plus, he notes already how the company has introduced some initiatives which are proving successful. “Basically, the industry has always been and will continue to be highly competitive. There are many more specialty boutique recruiters popping up all over Australia, that provide that high level of expertise in their chosen sector. To ensure we continue to stay between the squeeze from the small providers and the multi nationals, we too will introduce sector specialisation in areas such as Health, Accounting & Finance, Sales & Marketing and Senior Appointments. Our mandate moving forward to be industry experts, with a boutique feel and with a national reach. The refreshed culture and new initiatives implemented will help us to attract top talent. “However, the initiatives we have introduced, have provided great outcomes over the past 18 months, we have grown our temporary revenue by 12%, our permanent income by 28%, have increased our office footprint, and decreased turnover to 5%. It is a work in progress though, and we have a long way to go.” To gain and uphold the high quality reputation it currently possesses, Paul and IPA itself have had to overcome many challenges in order to be successful, particularly within the Asia-Pacific region. Paul is complimentary of the firm’s solid network, enabling it to continue to operate where other firms have withdrawn, and he says the biggest challenge has been economically, but the company embraced this and overcame this issue. “Maintaining our solid network, including branches in regional parts of Australia where many competitors have stopped operating from has helped us grow financially and also created another point of difference. Our