Lifting the Lid on RPO – April-Rose Kennedy
Reed Talent Solutions (RTS) are a leading contingent and permanent workforce solutions provider; designing, implementing, and delivering bespoke solutions across all sectors. Two key functions of these recruitment services include recruitment process outsourcing (RPO), managed service programmes (MSP). Among other things, RTS also provide Talent Advisory and upskilling programmes such as Recruit, Train, Deploy.
So, we know RPO is a growing sector… but what actually is it?
The RPO team provide clients with outsourced recruitment services. This can cover the entire recruitment lifecycle, it can be the delivery of the end-to-end attraction, sourcing and selection process or it may be a single element of the recruitment process, such as attraction.
The RPO function will primarily manage permanent recruitment programmes for their clients and can also take responsibility for promoting the employer’s brand during the recruitment process. This is a largely candidate delivery focussed team but to assist with this delivery there is a lot of hiring manager interaction.
As well as a management team, the RPO teams are made up of Talent Specialists and Talent Partners with career development options available within both of these roles. These are target driven roles with the primary focus being fulfilment of client requirements. The team splits are often contract driven, with each team focusing on a particular contract. Co-members within Reed Talent Solutions RPO often gain exposure of different contracts and projects as the life span of a given contract can vary considerably.
We caught up with April-Rose Kennedy who is an RPO Talent Lead. Before joining Reed, April had never been in recruitment before. She told us ‘it was a real jump from what I was used to. It was a completely different line of work, but it’s been amazing!’
What attracted you to Reed Talent Solutions
‘I began at Reed two years ago. I just wanted to try something different. I wanted something a little bit more ‘normal’ and I thought I still would like to do something with people. I enjoy people, I want to hit targets and I’m quite number driven, and my friend actually worked here, and she was like hey you would love this! So I was like, okay I’ll give it a go, and here I am!’
What are the benefits of choosing RPO?
“When you are offering someone a job and they get really excited then you realise actually it’s a big deal like you just made a really drastic change in someone’s life and it gives you a little kick. It’s rewarding. It makes you feel like you’re making a difference.“
As a RPO Talent Lead, how did you progress into this role? / What has your career journey been to get to the RPO Talent Lead role?
“I came in as a Talent Specialist for the Royal Mail project so I was part of the frontline team recruiting for postal workers. I was always looked upon as someone senior within the team. I was the go-to person for the frontliners, handled a lot of the training, guiding the team, but I really enjoyed doing this. So that’s where it started. Then I thought I definitely want to climb up here.”
What do you like about the culture at Reed?
“It’s a really supportive network here. I was brand new once and I needed guidance and support and now when someone comes to me and they’re like ‘hey I hear that you know how to do this and I’m really lost’ I’m like I do know how to do that and it’s nice being able to pass that knowledge on and support your co-members where you can. Everyone is like a little family here. I could walk up to someone I don’t even know and say, ‘hey good morning. Do you know how to do this?’ and they say, ‘yeah sure I can help you with that’ and that’s rare.”
Meet the team RPO – Projects
Is there a separation between Reed Talent Solutions and the rest of the Reed Group?
“No absolutely not. There’s no separation or segregation in my opinion. You could meet anyone from any part of the Reed business even a part that you’ve never even heard of and you’d feel like you know that person after a couple of minutes. It’s a strong supportive brand and if there’s anything you want to learn about there’s no divide either so if I had an interest in the other side of the company there would be someone that can support me.”
What type of person might the roles in RPO attract?
“We see a lot of variation, there’s no one size fits all approach. In recruitment, let alone RPO. You see people with similar attributes, so you tend to see very friendly faces that like to get on the phones. They like to talk! But within RPO, there’s so many different contracts that require different things. Within my contract, for example, the calibre of people that we might see coming into the frontline can be completely different on the onboarding side. If you come in with drive and a go get it attitude, then you will, you will do fantastically well here.”
“If we cast our mind back to how our RPO started, it started with 6 people and looking at the sheer velocity that it’s at now at 100+ people, I don’t think there’s any stopping us.
I think it’s just kind of grown arms and legs. We continue to win new business and grow our offering, harnessing the latest technology and best in class practices.”
If you are interested in a career within Reed Talent Solutions in RPO, you can find out more about the role and apply online here.
By Natasha Chan
Attraction & Engagement Specialist