Staying Committed
Engaging workers at work and play

What’s the main ingredient that makes a particular staffing firm a great place to work? If you ask ConSol Partners, it’s staff engagement. Its employees believe that staff engagement is key when it comes to why ConSol is a Best Staffing Firm to Work For.

Marc Cohen, who co-founded the company in 2009 with Graeme Hubert, aims to make this a priority. “We put a big emphasis on staff engagement,” says Cohen, who also serves as executive VP of the company. “We look at their motivation and then we look at incentive trips and we make sure there are fun events. We really try to engage individuals whether that be at a competition at work or an all-expenses paid trip to Dubai or Marbella.” Cohen also brings up training and career progression. After being inspired by writer, lecturer and training developer Dale Carnegie,

Cohen helped create a training program at ConSol Partners. The training program evolved into a full training academy.

“There are some areas where we really try to separate ourselves from other recruitment firms and that comes with impacting employee performance,” Cohen says. “So we launched the Training Academy and we’re really hard on extensive training and not just the initial part, but that extensive month-on-month and year-onyear training of the individual.”

 Moving Up 

Cohen says that the extensive training prepares employees for success and as he says, “The more success they have at ConSol, the more likely they are to stay and enjoy it and be engaged.” Andrew Manion, team leader of the semi-conductor, communications division at ConSol, agrees.

“ConSol is really good from a progression prospective. It’s the key benefit from working here,” he says.

“We’ve got a progress review which lays out exactly what you need to do to move to the next level,” Manion says. “So I’ve been able to progress to my position quite quickly all the way from the junior resources level and, from not knowing anything about the recruitment industry, all the way up to team leader where I now manage a team.”

Despite never having studied at university, Manion climbed the ladder and now regularly travels around the world to meet ConSol’s clients.

“It’s all in black and white in how you can progress,” he says. “There are no grey areas. If you hit your targets and you hit what is asked of you, then you’re able to move to the next level and you are always in progression. It’s really down to the individual to perform well and to move to the next level.”

Cohen believes that having such a clear and transparent progression reviews, helps motivate individuals to meet their goals and advance their careers.

“The target, the salary increases and all that you can achieve is all written down and everything is spelled out,” Cohen says. “If you hit ‘x’ in then you’ll get this recognition, promotion and this salary. Therefore, by having this really open and by enabling individuals to get pay raises and promotions every six months, it’s really a meritocracy- based business.”

Cohen also strongly believes this helps the retention rate as well as the attraction rate because they are able to show learning, progressing and earning through the life cycle of ConSol. Manion has been a part of the life cycle of ConSol for more than five years and he plans to continue to grow within the company. “With ConSol you are always looking for the next step and that’s the way it should be. It is a constant culture of progressing people through the business and that’s the kind of culture I’m happy staying with.”

The cycle begins when an employee first enters the business at ConSol.

“We really empower each individual who comes in to the business and we work with them and show them how they can hit their targets,” Cohen says. “Rather than say ‘you need to do this’, the question is, ‘What do you need to do,’ which is something slightly different. It’s a different emphasis on how we engage with staff.” Despite the robust training and progression measurements, ConSol believes that each individual is responsible for their results and gives their employees autonomy to create their own schedules and find the right balance between work and life.

Fun Elements

On top of training and work-life balance, what also makes ConSol such a great place to work for is that they know how to have fun. “The culture here is really quite young,” Manion says. “You work hard and you play hard and everyone works hard during the week so we have weekend trips away where we all go out with each other.” The team also goes out Friday nights for dinner or drinks, plays table tennis in the office and FIFA (soccer) video games on a Play- Station that’s also in the office. “There is a real element of fun in everything that we’re doing,” Manion says.

The office is also a strong advocate of health, fitness and wellbeing, as some employees go to the gym together and sometimes take long lunches to ensure that they work out. The office also has healthy snacking options such as fruit. “One of the key components behind these measures is making sure that individuals get time away from work to do their own thing and be rested,” Cohen says. When asked what the power of being one of the Best Staffing Firms to Work For is, Cohen simplified it into one word: credibility. “It’s something that shows us that as a company we’re going in the right direction,” Cohen says. “It’s a big honor to have. We enjoy it, the credibility.”