Launch set to give HR careers a boost

HR professionals can browse for their next position on-line with the launch of www.hrstaff.com, a site targeted at the HR sector and due to go live this week.

The site is the brainchild of Anne-Marie Leggatt, who has worked in recruitment for 13 years at consultancies including Oldham & Tomkins (now Capita Tomkins) and Elan Computing (now Manpower). She came up with the idea while working as business development manager at Arinet, a subsidiary of Amdahl Resources, and involved in the launch and marketing of a web site for financial professionals.

The site stemmed from a glaring need to find new ways of attracting HR staff, explains Leggatt. She found that her own recruitment contacts were constantly being asked to assist in searching for HR professionals.

"We found there were very few avenues to attract these professionals and amazingly the Internet had not been explored. Generalist web sites were not generating the quality or quantity of response although the concept was recognised as sound."

The site – which took Applied Consultancy Solutions four months to construct and is backed by a "select group of private investors – is aimed at all levels of the profession and Leggatt believes its success will lie in its targeted HR approach.

"I don’t believe generalist sites have thought through what they are trying to do. When an individual is looking for a career move they want to reach the most relevant positions quickly and efficiently," she says.

"The larger generalist sites typically quote page impressions, visitors and stickiness – all valuable data – but if I want to know how many human resources professionals visit the site they are a little vague. I am not saying we will not have some wastage, but I can’t see the point in visiting our site if you are not interested in the HR profession.

"Because we are all from a recruitment or HR background we understand the difficulties of recruiting and the service levels required and expected by professional people.

Response from those in the industry who have seen the site is good. "We recognise the need in the market for a specialist human resources site – I think www.hrstaff.co.uk may well hit the mark," says Mike Dodd, managing director of Academy HR Services Group. His views are echoed by Bernadette Moriarty, HR adviser at Canon Systems Management Europe: "It is easy to navigate, the layout is good. I think the site could become very hot for the HR profession…"

The second phase of funding for the site will need considerably more investment, says Leggatt, but she hopes the success of the site will be visible that potential investors will see a tangible service to invest in.

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