With 2019 just around the corner, our Agency Recruitment Manager, Emma Burke, reflects on the past year and discusses the types of roles and business’ that the Agency team has been working on along with the challenges that the industry has faced.




What challenges have you seen within the industry this past year?
The biggest challenge that the agency industry faces, which isn’t a new one, is the Agency vs. In-House conundrum and the benefits that working client-side offers job-seekers. However, one of the biggest surprises/changes that I have seen this year is the number of senior candidates that are keeping their options open to both agency and in-house opportunities. This is partly down to the flexibility that agencies are now offering in terms of their working hours, benefits, holiday allowances and competitive salaries. It’s also down to the variety and scope of work that agencies offer; the ability to work multi-channel or specialise (dependent on the agency). The fact that agencies are investing heavily in new technologies and staying up to date with the latest trends, means that Agency-side is a highly attractive proposition to many people. In addition, the growth of a lot of agencies has meant that there are more career-development opportunities available to people.

Saying this, there are still numerous client-side organisations that can offer much higher salaries than agencies. Whilst this is pertinent across all skillsets, I believe this is more prominent when searching for Web Developers and Analysts. Many businesses in the North West are looking to build in-house teams, to cut cost and have more control over their brand and marketing; this means that agencies are potentially losing out on talent as they are unable to offer higher salaries and compete with these businesses.

Nonetheless, the agency model is strong and over the last 5 years, the growth and strength of agencies specialising in “technical” have grown considerably. According to eConsultancy, technical development accounts for 24% of fee income for digital work, so fingers crossed agencies can retain and attract developers as time goes on.

Top 3 Tips for someone to have a successful Agency career?

  1. Be open-minded; don’t reject opportunities based on the role paying slightly less than your salary expectations. A lot of agencies are now doing salary reviews based on performance rather than longevity, so if you go in and prove yourself, you’ll be rewarded.
  2. Remember that the North-West is a small place. First impressions count, and consistency cancelling and re-arranging interviews can put a black mark against your name.
  3. Look past the prestige and “attractiveness” of the client base and look at the type of work the agency is doing for their clients. Quite often, the attractive consumer brands will use agencies for odd-jobs and more smaller project work, be more demanding and there is limited creativity. There are many agencies who work with clients where there is a highly collaborative relationship; they value the agencies expertise and the scope of work is more attractive – more campaign led, ideas based and more variety.

Looking to move to a new a new agency in the new year? Let Emma and her team help you! To discuss new roles, call our award-winning team on 0161 833 1044 or email your CV to [email protected]

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