A reflection on the year and what value you can enjoy from us

As we come to the end of our first quarter, we have been reflecting on the start of the year and the incredible experiences of 2022. We’re here to provide the best customer service we can; learning about what’s important to you in order to give a bespoke and trusted recruitment experience.

Towards the end of 2022, Highfield and DataX were proud to receive a great selection of awards, including

  • Best Customer Service Award
  • Employer Award
  • Business of the Year
  • Best Customer-Focused Recruitment Company
  • Highest Percentage award from the 5% Club- for our commitment to learning and having the largest % of our team on a recognised L&D programme
  • Employer of the year

Receiving these awards was a great honour to us but ultimately they mean a lot because they reflect the support and trust our customers have in us which is why we come to work each day.

Our time as a recruitment agency has led us to these growing relationships we have with you as we work together to ensure you can reach your goals. No matter what your idea of your future looks like, we want to build that with you and give you the tools and platform that you need to succeed. We’ve all had to go through the job searching process at various points in our lives so we really do understand the challenges you might face whether you’re seeking a job or a person to fit your vacancy. It’s not easy and we get that

||           Employers

Tell us your company vision, your unique culture, and the ideal future as you see it! We can help you get there and fill your dream with the candidates that can make it happen. Show us all the amazing parts of your business! This is your chance to proudly boast about your achievements as an employer. The more we get to know what your business is like, the more we can show some talented candidates what they could be a part of as well as make sure they are the right fit for your business in addition to having the right skills. Our ever-growing, expert teams have a strong network of candidates that could be your perfect match.

||           Job Seekers

Job seekers, tell us about your dreams, your goals, your exciting plans and adventures! We want to understand your individual needs and get to know who you are and therefore find the perfect job that matches your lifestyle and goals as well as your skills and experience.

You have so much to offer employers and we work with them to understand you as a person, in addition to your capability, to make sure their culture is right for you. Each of us has our own reasons to go to work – family, money, a love of holidays – and we know that yours will be unique to you. Let us discover your priorities together and work out the best career that will fill every need and want as our lovely consultants make your journey through recruitment easy.

We know that just about every company tells you that they care about their customers, and we share the same sentiment, but we truly work hard to help you in a time of vulnerability. Constant communication with open and honest conversations will help you to feel completely taken care of and kept as a priority at Highfield; not just a number. But if you were just a number, you’d be number 1! …Too cheesy?

Relationships aren’t one way though. You are of course the main focus, but you have the chance to get to know us a little too. The exciting, new profile pages on our website means you can get to know each of our consultants in much more detail – maybe a little more than we expected, but we do keep saying about honesty! They are there to first and foremost provide you with the best recruitment experience they can but to also share your stories and decisions at a point that can be a major crossroads in our lives. That’s a little harder to do when it’s just a voice at the end of the phone. So, take the chance to know a little bit more about your recruiter or even begin your search there as you can see all the specialist jobs each of our consultants are working on through their pages here for Highfield and here for DataX.

Looking into the future (or at least into 2023!) we have some very exciting plans at Highfield and DataX Connect and ideas to build trust and we want you to be a part of it.

Have some long-term plans yourself? Then come and have a chat with us and see what we can do! We can at least offer you some feedback and if we can’t help you we will always be honest and point you in the right direction.

Wellbeing’s importance in your career

What have we done in our first month with our new well-being platform Heka? Read about George’s well-being experience.

Well-being is …well important. We hear it often, and it couldn’t be more true. It seems like an easy statement doesn’t it? But how can you keep on top of your well-being whilst at work? The juggle between your health, career success, responsibilities and more can be a bit of a challenge on your own.  You ideally want a job where your work and personal life are not at odds with each other right?

Aim to find a company that has a work-life balance to be proud of, somewhere that provides opportunities and support to help you achieve this. Imagine being able to work in a way that brings you happiness and fulfilment in the way you individually need for your own unique well-being needs. Can you get a personalised working experience that matches all of your needs? You should never settle for less than you are worth!

So many questions can come to mind when looking for a career that supports your mental health and well-being because it is just so important to maintain a healthy balance. Lockdown taught us the importance of spending more time on ourselves so it is only natural if you worry about how starting a new job will impact your well-being. Highfield and DataX are no strangers to well-being needs, we all have them! We keep trying new things and seeing where the next challenge takes us towards improving the health and well-being of everyone here. Two years ago we were one of the first companies to introduce the 4-day working week and then last year we brought in unlimited holiday this year it was our wellbeing pot.

There are many different aspects to well-being and we all need different support at different points in our life. For example, at one point you may want support with your sleep, next month it could be your diet, maybe keeping fit or a health check. And so, as your needs can change month to month, signing up to one benefit for the year wouldn’t work for most people. This is what led us to partner with Heka, a well-being service that provides a wide range of benefits to suit individual needs that you can change each month. Our people get a monthly well-being pot for each individual that they can use to spend towards any of the amazing products and services that Heka support such as gym memberships, exercise equipment, financial appointments, and healthy eating (like Hello Fresh and Huel) to name just a few. There is so much on there to suit a wide range of needs.

One of the biggest factors we prioritise is the fact that everyone is individual, and therefore, a ‘one size fits all’ just…doesn’t fit all. We trust our people to know what’s best for them, and we want to help them achieve it. The response has been really positive, with people picking a variety of benefits to suit them. We spoke to George, one of our amazing consultants who had a life ambition to learn piano and used Heka to help him achieve this!

Hey George, What benefit did you choose this month?

Piano lessons.

What inspired you to choose this?

I want to be able to walk up to a piano in a train station and play a few bangers.

Is there an end goal or was this something you were keen on just trying out?

To master Afterglow by Wilkinson

(A great choice by the way George!)

What effect will this have on your well-being?

Only positives, it’s nice to work out my brain on something outside of work, that will give me true self-satisfaction.

How was your first lesson?

An eye-opener! It gave me a newfound respect to anyone that can play an instrument.

Will there be more lessons? Are we looking at the next Mozart or Chopin?

For sure, next lesson is already booked in.

How did you feel after your lesson?

Like I’d taken my first step of a marathon…with only one leg.

Has the opportunity inspired you to try something new or save up for a dream?

This is new and a dream so for now I’m sticking with mastering the keys.

What’s your plan for next month’s allowance?

More lessons.

Anything else you want to say about your first month with the Heka benefits?

Seems a great platform, it has many different options, there’s something for everyone on there.

After buying a cheap keyboard from a guy down the street, George used the lockdowns during Covid to begin teaching himself how to play, but life got in the way -as it does- and it had been a while since he’d been back on the keys. Unfortunately, though, Heka didn’t have a partnership with the music teacher that George had found.. However! With some back and forth chats together, we managed to arrange with Heka for the lessons to be covered, and the personalised service gave George his first piano lesson.

We’re thrilled to see the benefits already being made to people’s wellbeing and all the different ways people are taking care of themselves. There are definitely going to be plenty more stories to come!

Visit our vacancies page if you move to a more personalised wellbeing benefit and enjoy a company that works relentlessly behind the scenes to develop this for you.

Lunar New Year this Sunday 22nd January

Did you know that Lunar New Year (Chinese New Year) will be on Sunday 22nd January this year? This huge event comes at the start of the lunar calendar – which is why the dates seem to change every year according to our Gregorian calendar- and is a long celebration for families and friends most commonly from Asian countries. However, this has grown over the years and is now often found in far more countries all across the world.

||           What is this year’s animal?

Each year is dedicated to a particular animal and 2023 is the year of the Rabbit; specifically the water Rabbit. Check out what animal sign you are based on the year you were born and see if this year is lucky for you!

For example, our colleague Alan Ng is born in the year of the Dragon, this will be a very lucky year for him. 2023 is predicted to show good fortune to Dragon with a variety of successes in their wealth and love as hard work will get them through the tougher challenges this year may cause them.

There are many ways you could experience luck and this is a huge part of the culture and meaning behind Lunar New year. Although its exact origin date is not known, many believe it began in the Shang Dynasty (1600–1046 BC), and dates back around 3,500 years. Through those years, generations of people have welcomed the new year by wishing luck, wealth, and good fortune to loved ones in a whole host of exciting ways!

||           What do people do for Lunar New year?

You may have heard of “Lai see” which are red envelopes given to children, friends, co-workers etc which contain a small amount of money to bring good luck and wealth. These gifts are commonly given to those around you and have taken a more modern twist as apps and digital ‘red envelopes’ are used to share this tradition beyond the threshold of your home. It’s been an easy and fun way for people to continue this tradition in a modern world.

Traditions vary depending on where Lunar New year is being celebrated, however, a common theme for everyone is to reconnect with family and dedicate time with them to feast and celebrate. Years ago it was more common, however, it is still practiced today, that the start of the celebrations are spent honouring your ancestors and praying to gods. It may be a little less followed these days, but it was believed to bring a lot of bad luck if you didn’t respect these traditions in the past! Importantly though, the whole celebratory period is about enjoying life and welcoming the new fortune of a new year.

Fireworks, lion dancing, eating, and more are just some of the wonderful ways in which many of south and southeast Asian countries (and now many more western cultures) celebrate Lunar New year. China is one of the largest countries to celebrate of course, and with a population of 1.4 billion people which is roughly just under 20% of the world population, it is no surprise to the incredible size and popularity of this new year event each year.

So, celebrate this weekend as the year starts on Sunday 22nd of January! Look for your animal year and find out what fortune you will discover in 2023. Join the billions of people enjoying these long and vibrant celebrations as it typically runs across 15 days. That’s a lot of time to eat, dance, and experience the good luck of a Lunar New year!

One more thing you can say during the Lunar new year is ‘Kung Hei Fat Choy’ meaning Happy & Prosperous.

World water day 2022

The United Nations created World Water day with the goal to draw attention to the importance of water and how many people are without safe water access around the world. It is a chance to celebrate what water provides whilst simultaneously sharing awareness of the global water crisis. A core focus of World Water Day is to support the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6: water and sanitation for all by 2030.

||           “Groundwater – making the invisible, visible”

Started in 1993, World Water Day has brought attention to a range of issues around water and changes that need to be made. Each year there is a new theme to give specific focus to, and this years’ theme is “Groundwater – making the invisible, visible”. Groundwater is essential to so many aspects of our lives, including drinking supplies, sanitation, food production, and industrial processes, as almost all liquid freshwater is groundwater.

It plays a critical role in adapting to climate change, but due to being out of sight, it can often be overlooked by people not realizing just how important it is.

||           “be a part of the action”

Events are hosted by people and organisations in the months leading up to the 22nd of March, with participation in the global public campaign which is launched several months prior by UN-Water. All their information and details for campaigns and activities to help you get involved can be found through their social media or online at www.worldwaterday.org so you can be a part of the action. Then, on World Water Day itself, the UN World Water Development Report is released. This links with the same topic as the campaign and recommends policy direction.

Key messages of the World Water Day 2022 campaign:

  • Groundwater is invisible, but its impact is visible everywhere.
  • Almost all of the liquid freshwater in the world is groundwater, supporting drinking water supplies, sanitation systems, farming, industry and ecosystems.
  • What we do on the surface matters underground. We must only put harmless, biodegradable products on the soil and use water as efficiently as possible.
  • Groundwater crosses borders. We must work together to manage transboundary groundwater resources.
  • We cannot manage what we do not measure. Groundwater must be thoroughly explored, analyzed and monitored.
  • Groundwater will play a critical role in adapting to climate change. We must protect and explore groundwater, balancing the needs of people and the planet.

||           “looking for skilled workers to join the sector”

Careers in the water sector can provide a fulfilling experience where you can feel proud of the work you do and make a difference to people’s lives. It is essential to have access to clean, safe water and the jobs involved with ensuring that that happens are looking for skilled workers to join the sector. Designing, building, and maintaining more efficient and effective water facilities can look to improve our future in so many ways and provide a vital resource to people around the UK or globally.

Our consultants can help guide you into these careers! Whether you’re an experienced candidate or new to the water sector, we’d love to hear from you and get you started on a career path you can thrive on. Give us a call on 01489774010 and ask to chat about your options in the water sector. Even you just have a few questions or curious about what’s out there, the team will be more than happy to help you and their experienced and trusted knowledge could be the start of something incredibly exciting for you.

The history and importance of International Women’s Day

International Women’s Day has been a recognised and ongoing day of celebration and protest for more than 100 years. First celebrated in 1911 in Austria, Denmark, Germany, and Switzerland, IWD has grown it’s reach to a widely global celebration; creating awareness and shining a light on some of the most important gender issues around the world.

||           “protest of 15,000 women”

1909 saw the first National Women’s Day across the USA, following the protest of 15,000 women who marched through New York City demanding shorter hours, better pay, and voting rights. During a conference of Working Women in 1910, Clara Zetkin – who was the leader of the Women’s Office for the Social Democratic Party in Germany – put forward the idea of an international day for women to be celebrated every year around the world; helping women to push for demands and equality.

||           “We’ve seen a lot change since 1909”

While it is important to encourage change and raise awareness of these issues that inhibit the progress of equality and women around the world, it is equally important to celebrate the achievements that have been made. We’ve seen a lot change since 1909, both with the advancement of equality and understanding the different challenges faced by our genders, and also with the changes to our attitudes. Many women are finding it easier to get into positions of power and male dominated industries that previously seemed impossible. STEM jobs have seen a growth in popularity with women, and over the years has developed into a far more welcoming environment to encourage women and girls into these great roles. We still see a majority of male workers in many sectors, however, more and more women are applying and progressing their careers in engineering and technical jobs.

||           “protest of 15,000 women”

The industry is working on reducing the skills gap, and with the help of hiring more women it continues to take great strides in improving their opportunities and removing the idea that technical engineering is solely for men. We are always looking for the ideal candidates to place into our roles, using their skills not gender to match them with their dream opportunities and clients. Highfield have a number of jobs incoming all the time, waiting for the perfect match to fill them. We aim to be the most trusted recruitment agency, which is demonstrated throughout our work as we treat you with honesty, transparency, and kindness. We understand what it’s like looking for a new job whether you’re starting new or pushing yourself further in your career, we can help you. Give us a call on 01489774010 and our friendly consultants can talk you through the process or guide you to the jobs we have. Alternatively, head to our website and go from there!

||           “many women can get back into a fulfilling career”

Highfield are proud to have many great women working with us, filling positions ranging along all levels across the office, from apprentice to mangers. We welcomed some amazing people coming off maternity leave, providing flexible working hours and remote working options to give more time to their families. The responsibility of care often falls to the women within families, making it far harder for them to return to work or have time for a healthy balance. This is why our 4-day work weeks are an important benefit. By having the chance to get an extra day off each week and not lose out on pay or work more hours in a compressed schedule, many women can get back into a fulfilling career with less worry and stress.

||           retain these high level skills women can bring to the workforce

It is important to support and care for each other, no matter who we are or what gender we define ourselves by. More understanding and flexibility to provide a healthy work-life balance is vital to retain these high level skills women can bring to the workforce. Further awareness of the issues faced within workplaces as well must not be ignored and this is why International Women’s Day will continue it’s long standing celebrations and protests in order to achieve a true equality and have women’s demands be heard, their safety protected, and their lives changed.

7th International Women and Girls in Science day focuses on clean water and sanitation

Today marks a celebration of women and girls in science as we continue to work towards equality and opportunity for everyone. It is the 7th year of this international day with 2022’s theme being; “Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion: Water Unites Us.” On the 11th of February 2022, the 7th assembly will take place in virtual format from UN Headquarters in New York. This will be aiming to recognize the role of women and girls in science, not only as beneficiaries, but also as agents of change, including accelerating progress towards the achievement of SDG 6 (Clean Water and Sanitation).

The 7th Assembly will bring together women in science and experts from around the world to discuss the water nexus in achieving the three pillars of sustainable development – economic prosperity, social justice, and environmental integrity. High-level government officials, representatives of international organizations, and the private sector will all be represented as a part of the assembly and work towards bringing change.

||           “it has become a desperate situation”

UN reports show that billions of people around the world will be unable to access safe household drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene services in 2030 unless progress rates quadruple. Challenges around safe water include a rise in demand, poor management or maintenance, failure to conserve water resources, and climate change. It has always been an important issue to provide and take care of basic human needs like access to safe and clean water, however it has become a desperate situation needing further support and progress.

||           “more than 884 million people did not have safe water to drink”

The latest information regarding access to clean water was published in 2019 by WHO and UNICEF, which shows that in 2017, more than 884 million people did not have safe water to drink. Progress, however, is being made as the proportion of the global population using safely managed drinking water services has risen from 61% to 71% since 2000. As well as this, the proportion of the global population using safely managed sanitation services also increased, going from 28% to 45%. There is still major room for improvement, however, it is going in the right direction.

In households without onsite water, it is more likely for women and girls to be responsible for collecting water for their family, creating a gender inequality as they have to take time out of school or work in order to do so. In 2017, they were the ones responsible for this in 8 out of 10 household that didn’t access to water.

||           “there is a need for skilled workers within the water sector”

Maintaining and providing water is vital all over the world, including projects closer to home. With constant upkeep needed, upgrading current systems, and planning and building of new developments, there is a need for skilled workers within the water sector, creating a range of vacancies. Vacancies available to both men and women, and with women making up just 24% of the core STEM workforce in the UK, there is a long road to equality ahead. Again, improvements have been made as we’ve seen the industry increase both the amount of female scientists, engineers, etc. and also the level of the positions held by women. More managers and leading positions are being filled, and continuing this drive towards equal opportunities brings a great range of benefits to companies and the workforce itself.

||           “Let us help you find a job you can be proud of and succeed in.”

Get involved in some of our major water projects by contacting our trusted water recruitment consultants on 01489 774010 or search through our jobs on our website. Let us help you find a job you can be proud of and succeed in. Our trusted recruitment agency has placed thousands of candidates over the years and those numbers aren’t slowing down. We can support you and guide you through the process, making sure you’re kept in the know at all times with our honest transparency.

Give us a call, who knows where it may lead you.

We speak to apprentices at Highfield this National Apprenticeship Week

We’re in the middle of National Apprenticeship week now, where countless events have already taken place and so many more are yet to come!

Apprenticeships have been provided by Highfield for years, leading to permanent colleagues and wonderful members of our team. This has also led us to become proud gold member of the 5% club as we continue to ensure opportunities are provided for everyone in a range of ways. Our additional benefits like 4-day work weeks and unlimited holiday, help to create an environment that supports the growth of our colleagues whilst maintaining a healthy work-life balance. This means apprenticeships can feel like less of a workload as more time can be dedicated to your studies without taking over either your work or personal life.

To mark this event, we spoke to two apprentices within Highfield to hear about how their experience has been. Sam and Hannah have both been working here for the last year whilst regularly attending college lessons and completing their coursework and exams alongside the day to day role in the office. Taking each responsibility in their stride, here’s what they had to say…

How have you found your apprenticeship?

My apprenticeship has been a very positive experience because it was a good way to put what I have learnt in the classroom to use in the real world. It has started my career in finance and provided me with practical skills in a job setting.

  • Sam

It’s been good to combine the general knowledge I had at the start with the more specific and in depth lessons, all while being able to apply these new skills into my day to day work. It has helped me to gain a much clearer understanding of marketing and developed my skillset over the last year that I’ve been a part of the apprenticeship.

  • Hannah

How have you found working at Highfield at the same time?

I have really enjoyed working at Highfield and I believe it is a great company to do an apprenticeship with as they offer great flexibility and support with college and exams etc. The 4-day week helped me massively as I could use that day to focus on college as well as having a good work/life balance. 

  • Sam

It’s made it much easier to put the things I learn into practice everyday and to have had the experience of my manager to help me learn even more. She has been great with giving me the time and space to complete my college work while providing so much support in helping me with the tasks and work set by it too.

  • Hannah

Why did you want to do an apprenticeship?

Personally, I had a choice between an apprenticeship or University, and I picked the right one for me. Learning and earning simultaneously was more appealing to me and I think some employers may value experience more.

  • Sam

I wanted to gain the experience of marketing whilst narrowing down my knowledge and expertise to fit the role of a content creator so I could specialize more within that position. I have a University degree for film production but the pandemic hit soon after I graduated so the creative industry had become uncertain and unpredictable, so I chose to focus on using my skills but in a more secure career direction.

  • Hannah

What would you change about your experience?

I can’t think of anything I would change about my experience.

  • Sam

Nothing I would really change. It’s been great with Highfield.

  • Hannah

Would you recommend apprenticeships to people?

Yes, I do recommend people to do apprenticeships, it’s a great way to get your foot in the door and start a career in something you are passionate about.

  • Sam

Apprenticeships are a much more practical and hands on way of learning which can be far more enjoyable for many people, as well as giving the opportunity to be paid whilst you learn so there doesn’t have to be a choice between education and earning money. I feel that apprenticeships can sometimes be overlooked or people think it’s only for certain industries or jobs, but there really is a wide range of options. It can help to add qualifications and experience to your CV, making it easier to excel in a career you enjoy and give you the chance to experience the job to make sure it is something you want to do.

  • Hannah

What advice would you give to someone thinking of doing one?

Go for it 100%, unless you need a degree for what you want to do, I would suggest looking at apprenticeships and start gaining experience as soon as you can.

  • Sam

Look into what work you would enjoy and see what the qualification is at the end of the apprenticeship. Also, make sure it’s a good company to work for, otherwise you risk not enjoying your time or not feeling like you’re getting enough out of it and hesitate to pursue your career any further. It’s a great option especially if you’re unsure about going to uni. You can gain a lot of connections and experience which might normally be missed by going to university.

  • Hannah

The chance to earn and learn gives many people a doorway into a career that may not have been possible otherwise, so no matter your background, if you have a determination to succeed, the discipline to achieve, and the drive to grow, then we have some excellent opportunities for you! Speak to our talent acquisition Annie here, or head to our website to see what vacancies we have.

Positive role models this International Men’s Day

November is a month that celebrates and supports men and creates a time to highlight the struggles they face, with the help of Movember and International Men’s day. While we continue to strive for equality, the construction and engineering industries remain male dominated for now, making it all the more important to share and support the difficulties we all see and experience. This year’s theme focuses on “better relations between men and women” as one of the six pillars of International Men’s Day is to improve gender relations and promote gender equality.

One of the top purposes for this day is to celebrate the value men bring, positive role models, and to raise awareness of men’s well-being. Role models can be anybody, and they can be important for a range of reasons. From parents to strangers, there is no limit to who can have a positive impact on someone’s life, or how they do it. Friday 19th of November is International Men’s Day, so we spoke to a handful of the men at Highfield and asked them, “who was/is a positive role model for you and why?

I think your role models change over time. When you are younger you obviously look up to those closest to you, family and friends mainly. Then we all have some kind of ‘hero’, which in my case was always a footballer as I was a football obsessed as a child. And now I am older I take more inspiration from various people, whether that is a family member or someone who I happen to stumble across on a podcast, anyone with an inspirational story to tell. As a parent, I take inspiration from my own parents, in work I seek inspiration from those I work with and various business leaders, and my children will always be my greatest inspiration.

Andy, Director

Sam Hughes will always be a great role model to me. He taught me to appreciate everything I have and live life with a smile on my face. He showed me how to love every challenge that I face and know that it will make me stronger.

Liam, Director

I would say my dad has been a good role model, the reason being is I believe a good role model would be someone who is generous with their time and always is open to passing on the wisdom of their experience and knowledge to the betterment of others.

Sam D, Senior Delivery Consultant

I wouldn’t say I have one role model as a lot of people inspire me.

I have some good close friends and family that I look up to. From CEOs of tech companies to songwriters. Their success inspires me to work hard and become the best version I can of myself.

Simon, Financial Controller

I don’t really have just one role model – people that value people’s happiness in high regard are role models for me.

George, Principal Recruitment Consultant

It is important to value those around you, as well as yourself, and to keep those who inspire you in your mind to help drive your success and remind you of kindness. Support the men and women in your life this International Men’s Day to raise awareness for men’s well-being as well as reinforce gender relations and equality.

A variation of skills, experience, and backgrounds fills our trusted teams and we’re always on the lookout for more honest and friendly people to join us! Chat with Annie about our open positions and find the right career choice for you, or call us on 01489774010. As one of the most trusted recruitment agencies, we ensure the well-being of everyone here to be a top priority; inspiring true leadership and positivity throughout the business.

10 Interview tips

When looking for a new job, it is important to present yourself on paper and in person, the best way that you can. To help you out, we’ve created a helpful list of tips and tricks for your interviews that are commonly made mistakes. It can be easy to get flustered when the nerves kick in, but if you remind yourself of these basic rules, and prepare as much as you can before the interview, then it should be your most successful interview yet!

Remember, the best way to get better at something is to practice, so don’t worry too much if you haven’t had much experience being interviewed before. Do some mock interviews with friends or family and be kind to yourself. The first attempt might not be the smoothest, but it’ll get easier from there.

Highfield is a trusted recruitment agency, so we have all the inside knowledge on what employers are looking for and what not to do!


Be aware of your background in a video interview to avoid distractions or anything that draws the interviewer’s eye away from you. Your environment needs to have good signal or Wi-Fi and if you’re on a telephone call then try it standing up as your energy levels will rise which is reflected in your voice.

2. Test

Before the day of the interview try out the video platform you’re using or make sure your phone has a strong signal and clear microphone. Using a friend or family member for a mock test interview will help you learn the platform, ask for feedback on how clear the audio is and answers to the mock questions.

3. Time

Set yourself up early for any interview so you can be ready as soon as it starts. There may not be a second chance if you miss the phone or video call. If you have a face to face interview, be sure to travel to the location before the day so you know how to get there, how long it takes, and where to park or walk from.

4. Prepare

Make sure you have notes with any questions you wanted to ask or reminders on what to bring up as responses. Same as the next tip though, don’t let these distract you. A conversation should feel natural so let things flow and use the prompts occasionally. This will also mean you aren’t looking down too often and can instead maintain eye contact in a video interview.

5. Don’t get distracted

Turn off background noises like TV’s or music and clear anything distracting from around your computer, or in the room so as to maintain your full attention. If you’re at a location for a face-to-face interview, try not to look around at the environment too much. There might be a lot going on around you so stay focused on the conversation.

6. Be professional

Before a video interview, check your account is not an old one with an unprofessional name. Body language is key, so sit up straight and look at the camera to make eye contact. If it’s a phone call then use your voice to express personality (don’t come across as too robotic as they can’t see what your body language is saying, so you have to rely on your voice) and speak slowly and clearly. You can take your time with what you say as it will show you can remain in control and calm under pressure.

7. Communication

Face to face allows you to communicate in more ways than any other interview. Speak clearly and try not to go off on tangents. Sit up straight and be sure to listen just as much as you talk. They are there to hear about you, but avoid interruptions or talking over anyone and listen carefully to what they say. It’ll be a key interaction with people you could be working alongside, so be authentic as it’s important to know how your personality fits into the role and company.

8. Use real-world examples

You can almost guarantee that you’ll be given some situation-based questions so have some experiences to hand that you can talk about. Any examples of stressful situations you’ve dealt with or successful ideas that have helped the business will go a long way in showing your abilities.

9. Salary

Don’t be afraid of the salary question. If it isn’t mentioned before, research the industry average and be ready with a figure you want to achieve. They may ask what you earned in your previous role so make sure you have that on hand, and if you’re uncertain about asking, remember it is often an important determining factor of looking for work; and therefore information you should be clear on.

10. Follow up

At the end of an interview, ask for feedback and express your interest. Be sure to have shown you have enjoyed the sound of the role and tell the interviewer it was good to meet them and hear about the role.

It sounds like a lot of steps to follow but take your time and try not to rush. Making sure you do as many of these as possible will give you a better chance to be noticed by your interviewer and have you stand out from the crowd. If you want to speak to any of our experienced, trusted consultants for more help in finding a job, give us a call on 01489 774 010. We’re here ready to help you out.

5 steps to a great CV

Before you even make it to the interview, you have to make sure you show all the right things on your CV first. But what are the right things? We’re a trusted recruitment agency with many years in the industry, and we have the top 5 steps to get your resumé right!


Think about your skills, competencies, qualifications and experience. What are your unique selling points and strengths? Consider what you have achieved in your previous roles and keep them relevant to the new role you are applying for.

If you are replying to a specific job advertisement, review what key words and tasks were used in the advertisement. Which of these words applies to you?

2. Helpful Hints

A short and powerful CV will catch the attention of any recruiter and employer, but we understand it can be hard to narrow down a career’s worth of achievements to one page. So, if you’ve got a lot of matching skills or experiences then make sure your CV is no longer than 3 pages.

All content MUST be relevant to the job you’re applying for. This is the most important tip and is still often forgotten.

Make sure your CV is well structured and laid out, reflecting the logical manner in which you work and making it easier to read.

Avoid self-opinion. Include factual information or objective evidence which show the direct impact or results of your achievements.

Pay close attention to details in advertisements, like how to spell the contact’s name or any specific instructions on how to reply. Have someone else to double check your spelling and grammar.

Always avoid fancy fonts. Clear, neat text will have a significantly higher chance to be read by an employer or recruiter and keeps the document tidy and easy to understand.

3. The First Page

This should contain your:

– personal details

– home address

– contact details

at the top of the page.

Following this is a brief summary of educational credentials and qualifications.

Then an overview statement which covers your strengths in the relevant area, skills and experience, and the type of position sought.

4. Pages Two/Three

Highlight your employment history in reverse chronological order so that the latest job you have had is first on the list. If you’ve worked for one company, break it down with an entry for each position or project you have dealt with.

Briefly describe the responsibilities and work you’ve undertaken within each of those positions.

Include achievements, not just regular tasks, and where possible, explain them in sales, financial, or production terms.

List any relevant hobbies and interests in no more than three lines, so long as they relate to the position or industry you are applying for.

Any volunteering, charity work, or external posts are worth mentioning and always include any languages, courses, or training you have done.

Two referees are recommended to be given at a later date.

5. The Covering Letter

CV’s should always be introduced with a cover letter or telephone call.

Use this to expand on points from your CV or include new ones if there was not enough space.

It is not a purely opinion based piece, continue to stick to facts and evidence, but now you can have a bit more space to express more of who you are through that information.

The letter can really let your personality come through. Remember, recruitment consultants and employers read hundreds of CVs, an interesting introductory letter can make yours stand out!

For any more help on pursuing and developing your career, our friendly and trusted recruiters are ready to give you all the support and guidance you need. Call us on 01489 774 010 or visit our website to contact our team.

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