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Friday 26 August 2016
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FAST 50: Recruitment holds its own in recession

January 2012 | DeeDee Doke

The latest rankings of the fastest growing recruitment firms in the UK once again highlight the recruitment industry’s ability to reinvigorate and flourish in the toughest of conditions

The tale told by Recruiter’s 2012 Fast 50 rankings is one of resilience under harsh economic pressures. This year’s league table also showcases the recruitment sector’s unrivalled ability to continually regenerate itself through spawning dynamic new participants. And the rankings also reveal that fast growth is possible in recruitment sectors outside the high-value, high-margin, high-tech and white-collar playing fields. Recruiter’s Fast 50, compiled by Boxington Corporate Finance, lists the fastest growing private recruitment businesses in the UK. (See Methodology below.) And Tim Evans, Boxington’s managing director, contends that the 2012 edition offers a distinctly different, and unique, picture of the sector than of years past.

“This year’s Fast 50 is the first that captures the full impact of the economic recession that began in 2008,” Evans tells Recruiter. “And probably because of that, it’s the most interesting Fast 50 so far.”

“As we’d expect,” he continues, “the growth rates in this year’s Fast 50 are lower than they have been. So the average growth rate this year is 26% versus 37% last year. That reflects the economic conditions that this year’s Fast 50, in looking back three years, captures.”

Another trend that emerged was the appearance of a different mix of sector specialists than in years past. For instance, Evans says, “we see a much lower number of financial specialists. In fact this year there are only two — in previous years, there was an average of six”.

Industrial recruiters on rise

Also, Evans adds: “We see an emergence of blue-collar industrial players who previously have not featured highly. Players in the industrial driving and warehousing space who are consolidating the UK market, in doing so, are achieving good growth rates.”

Pointing to other interesting features this year, Evans says: “There’s a good showing for much larger international engineering businesses such as Fircroft [Engineering Services] and Swift [Worldwide Resources]. Because they’re so big, their getting onto the Fast 50 is all the more impressive. In percentage terms, the bigger they get, the harder it is to compete on growth rate. But they’ve done so, and that’s to be commended — it’s impressive.

“And there’s also a good showing for brand-new entrants — the likes of A24 Group (20), Arrows Group (5), Ship Shape Resources (8) and Transline Resource Group (4).”

Evans goes on to say. “We think this is testament to the recruitment sector’s ability to generate new players and grow new players.”

Weathering the storm

Looking ahead to 2013, Evans says: “This Fast 50 captures businesses that have grown in recession, and another recession is coming in. It will be difficult, but all of them look well positioned in their growth to weather the storm well. All of the Fast 50 have shown they’ve got the substance and momentum to endure hard conditions.”

Methodology

The Recruiter Fast 50 prepared by Boxington Corporate Finance lists the fastest growing private recruitment businesses in the UK according to compound annual sales growth rate as measured over each entrant’s most recent three-year fi nancial reporting period.

CRITERIA FOR INCLUSION: The Fast 50 assesses temporary and/or permanent recruitment companies which are registered in the UK as private, independent and unquoted companies. This category includes private companies that are co-owned by Private Equity. All companies considered for inclusion in the Fast 50 2012 must achieve a level of annual sales of £5m or above in each of their last three fi nancial years.

EXCLUSIONS: Companies that have fi led abbreviated accounts at Companies House without disclosing audited sales are excluded from the Fast 50 due to the absence of independently validated of sales. Unaudited management accounts are not accepted as proof of sales. Companies that serve the recruitment sector through the provision of IT, payroll, administrative or other services also do not quality.

DATA COLLECTION METHODS: Qualifying companies are automatically identifi ed through several research methods including the analysis of sector information from Companies House, fi nancial databases, press coverage and other research. Entry submissions are not therefore required, although any fi rm which believes that it may not be automatically assessed in the 2013 Fast 50 is invited to contact Boxington Corporate Finance. Please email fast50@ boxington.co.uk

The Recruiter Fast 50 prepared by Boxington Corporate Finance lists the fastest growing private recruitment businesses in the UK according to compound annual sales growth rate as measured over each entrant’s most recent three-year fi nancial reporting period.

CRITERIA FOR INCLUSION: The Fast 50 assesses temporary and/or permanent recruitment companies which are registered in the UK as private, independent and unquoted companies. This category includes private companies that are co-owned by Private Equity. All companies considered for inclusion in the Fast 50 2012 must achieve a level of annual sales of £5m or above in each of their last three fi nancial years.

EXCLUSIONS: Companies that have fi led abbreviated accounts at Companies House without disclosing audited sales are excluded from the Fast 50 due to the absence of independently validated of sales. Unaudited management accounts are not accepted as proof of sales. Companies that serve the recruitment sector through the provision of IT, payroll, administrative or other services also do not quality.

DATA COLLECTION METHODS: Qualifying companies are automatically identifi ed through several research methods including the analysis of sector information from Companies House, fi nancial databases, press coverage and other research. Entry submissions are not therefore required, although any fi rm which believes that it may not be automatically assessed in the 2013 Fast 50 is invited to contact Boxington Corporate Finance. Please email fast50@ boxington.co.uk

Click here to view Recruiter’s Fast 50 2012

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