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Now is not the time to panic!

Posted: 27 Jun 2016

Whichever way you decided to vote in the EU referendum, there is no escaping the outcome. We have all been subject to the media’s doom and gloom and the uncertainty of the plan, if any, from the Government post Brexit. In just a few days, we left the EU, we lost our Prime Minister, the FTSE 100 ended 3.2% lower and the possibility of Boris Johnson potentially running the country became more prominent.

We have all read over the weekend: Government in turmoil, Share prices are down, interest rates will go up, financial and property markets are in ruins and more….


Now is not the time to panic and it’s certainly not the time to contribute to the separation of our thriving multi-cultural country! In our eyes, now is the time to pull together and accept that yes the vote didn’t turn out the way we may have wanted it to, and yes we may face a couple of years of uncertainty and turmoil but we can use this as a platform to push forward.


It is possible for us to turn this around, and for us it is business as normal with the added determination to come out stronger than before.  Over the next 48 hours we will know more about the deal we have with the EU and where we stand, but until then there is no need to worry. Boris Johnson has announced that we will still have access to the single market, despite Brexit, if free movement is included in the trade deal.


Our clients hold strong business models, and we can see the possibility of many businesses thriving in the next couple of years. Our clients are fully committed to making the best of the situation and whilst there is no doubt that some will be effected, we at MRJ are very positive that opportunities will exist but we all need to stick together and make it work. 

Therefore our message is simple: This is not the time for any of us to sit by and accept fate, this is the time for us to work harder than ever before and be self motivated.

Oh and hopefully the England football team will go on and win the Euros to bring some joy to our great nation this summer. 

The Digital Skills Gap

Posted: 13 Jun 2016

The Digital Skills Gap and why it’s so important for us to act now and address it.

It’s been great to see the Digital Skills Gap addressed today with coverage from the BBC and Sky News and it’s about time in our eyes! Not only does Technology hold a place in our every day lives with the average person checking their phone 85 times a day and more than 2.8 billion internet users in the world it also plays a crucial part in business and the economy.


According to code.org, there will be 1,000,000 more jobs than computer science students by 2020, attributing to a $500 billion dollar opportunity gap, so why is there an evident skills gap if we all spend so much time with technology?


The main issue in our eyes is the outdated approach in schools which leaves many lacking in basic digital knowledge and unable to perform at work and create a career in an industry worth over £80bn!! A recent audit of IT equipment in schools found 22% was ineffective and only 35% of computer science teachers had a relevant qualification. Although the UK needs an estimated 745,000 additional workers with digital skills by 2017, the government could only recruit just 70% of the computer science teachers it needed.


So what is actually being done?


Now the issue is being highlighted and discussed in the House of Commons, it’s time for us to work together to tackle the skills gap before it’s too late. Last year the UK government implemented a landmark change to the school curriculum, getting rid of the traditional Information Technology content in favour of digital skills in computer science and digital literacy. An essential move to ensure that students leave school digitally literate!


Businesses need to pull together and ensure that training material is available for all workers to develop their skills within the workplace and create an economy which can provide a better future for the next generations!




The EU referendum is fast approaching, what camp are you in?

Posted: 08 Jun 2016

Starting in the recruitment world 15+ years ago, the country was on the crest of a wave with technology and the internet booming. Manchester City were in the first division. Craig David was at the height of his popularity. And every girl wanted a cupcake (Carrie Bradshaw - Magnolia Bakery in Sex and the City).


However it soon crashed (well Manchester City have since gone on to become, well pretty good)! And after living through the dotcom boom and having my first child and setting up a business during the most recent recession, I am concerned about the effects of Brexit and what it would (or could) bring to the UK and echo the thoughts of BofE Governor Mark carney who recently warned:


“Britain could slide into recession in the aftermath of a vote to leave the EU in next month’s referendum and could knock the pound sharply lower, stoke inflation and raise unemployment.”


Are you prepared to risk your job; your house; and your relationships; by voting to leave the EU as you’ve been told it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity for change?


Moving forward, the talent shortage is going to get worse, the knock on effect for unemployment could be catastrophic and the juniors of this world will find it even harder to get into work.


In every conference, client/candidate meeting and networking evening that I have attended over the last couple of years, the common theme is always about the North’s (and the UK’s) Talent Shortage issue.


There are some amazing companies being born out of the UK offering outstanding career opportunities to challenge even those in Silicon Valley but we are not coping with the demand. The issue will only get worse.


It’s a worry for everyone. So I ask, how is it going to get better by leaving the EU and making redundant the “freedom of EU movement” making it harder for EU citizens to work freely in the UK? In fact it will also no doubt push those eligible away into countries that actually want them.


"The EU means free movement of talent, and in a market where it’s competitive to hire great people this flow of talent within Europe makes recruitment a lot easier. We have 40+ nationalities working together at TransferWise: to grow an international business you need an international team and access to the best talent in the world."

CEO Taavet Hinrikus (TransferWise)


Don’t be fooled by the personality contest


I have been following the recent TV interviews, press releases and social media clips of both in and out campaigns and what is apparent is that David Cameron is single handedly losing the popularity contest.


I have never been the biggest fan of Cameron and most recently he looks like a broken man who is losing his grip on his party and his role of Prime Minister. This is a worry especially as I genuinely believe that Michael Gove & Boris Johnson have the personality and brain power to convince the country that now is the time to leave the EU and too many seem to be buying into them more than the impact. It’s time the country wakes up and quickly.


Britain is being held back by EU policies


By leaving, what will we gain? What power and control outweighs what we already have? Will leaving the EU, cutting ties with powers such as Germany & France and breaking up the UK when Scotland leave, actually improve living, personal finances and international trade? I have my doubts.


And it isn’t just me who is concerned.


None of Britain’s tech firms valued above £1,000,000 are in favour to leave the EU according to a new report with some of the leading names in the industry including Zoopla, JustEat, Ve and tech start-up Funding Circle mentioned


Funding Circle said a successful, well-functioning Europe is crucial to "a business like ours" and that this was best achieved by remaining in Europe. 65% of companies with customers in the EU and 76% of companies with suppliers in other EU Members States are concerned about their ability to buy and sell services across the EU if UK left. And at such a crucial time in our economic recovery, it’s clear to see why this concern must be taken into account!!


Gerard Grech, CEO of Tech City, is completely against Brexit for this reason stating:


“Digital businesses are very clear about the fact that when you look at the population of Europe, the talent pool is 400 million people which is comparable to the talent pool in the US, which is about 350 million people”


And the even bigger worry?


A vote to leave will no doubt cause complete chaos within the Conservative party opening the door for Corbyn to become the next Prime Minister and Farage getting his wish of a pure white Britain which will not only finish off the EU but amongst other things, will finish off a number of communities / religions in the UK. A complete disaster in itself!


As you can tell I’m in and believe leaving will be a disaster. So the message is clear. Don’t vote based on personality. David Cameron is broken but that doesn’t mean our country is. Vote now. Vote on reality. Vote for your kids and their future.


You can find a full list of over 200 UK Entrepreneurs from start-ups to household names who believe we are #StrongerIn here: http://www.strongerin.co.uk/over_200_uk_entrepreneurs_from_start_ups_to_household_names_say_we_are_stronger_in_europe#UmbL9WGgJEEbCPBz.97



Make the Most of Your Bank Holiday!

Posted: 27 May 2016

3 Ways To Make The Most Of Your Bank Holiday

1 Get out in the sunshine! Head over to Heaton Park for a picnic with your family or friends, and make the most of your time away from work.


2 Head to some of Manchester’s famous restaurants for Brunch! Here are some of the hotspots chosen by Manchester Evening News!



3 Keep your brain active, put the phone down and pick up a book! We are really enjoying reading "The Obstacle Is the Way" at the moment!


Emma's First week at MRJ

Posted: 20 May 2016

My first week at MRJ has been a mixture of initiation from the guys in the office playing jokes (which I fall for every time) and a very busy week getting to grips with the marketing strategy in place with the team. Coming from a background in both recruitment and social media I was thrilled to be offered the role of Marketing Manager with MRJ, and even more thrilled to be welcomed by the team.

My Background

The last few years, I have worked in London as a Talent and Social media executive which enabled me to develop existing skills and build relationships with major brands such as Nike, Sony and Puma. I decided to move back North after gaining as much experience as possible in just a few short years as I wanted to work in a friendlier environment and that is definitely what I have found in my first week here. When I first came for my interview, I was expecting a very corporate, suited and booted workplace and it couldn’t be further from that! The guys in the Office mix work and fun extremely well and aren’t shy of a ping-pong tournament or two to break up the day or settle any debates!


My first day was spent gathering knowledge on all of MRJ’s amazing clients and understanding the ethos of the company which 

MD, Jody Marks, has created a fantastic, honest and credible establishment with a niche place in the market of Digital and E-Commerce.

Media City Expo

I was able to get stuck in right away, and attended my first events representing MRJ with the Media City Expo event at BBC, Media City! The day was separated with workshops and seminars based around curating digital content and keeping brand consistency within social branding. All of this interests me anyway, as my background is in Social Media and Influencer Marketing, social for me is a dynamic and exciting field to work in and is constantly progressing which is why it’s fantastic for me to be working with MRJ now

What’s to Come?

I am certainly excited for my future with MRJ, as I continue to work on their brand strategy and marketing incorporating my expertes in Digital Marketing and concept leadership aswell as improving my banter skills in the office and trying not to fall for another one of “The Flekky” or Grant’s lines. Stay tuned for a fortnightly blog from myself discussing all things MRJ!

6 Reasons Tech Start-ups Should Work with MRJ

Posted: 03 May 2016

We spotted a great ad campaign recently...

Virgin Advert

As Virgin so cleverly puts it, you don’t have to be made of money to get the best – whether that’s trophies, a broadband service or tech talent.

Attracting and retaining the right people is crucial for start-ups, but they don’t always have the resources and recognition to secure the brightest talent. That’s where we fit in…

1.       We know how to promote your business to the talent market

We know what makes the best candidates tick. In what is a highly competitive market, start-ups can find it difficult to compete with larger, wealthier and more established organisations. Take developers for example – only 15% are actively looking for a job, whilst 78% are open to new job opportunities. That’s a lot of passive candidates, but they’re not easy wins. We know how (and have the time) to position your business, so that top talent will want to work with you.

2.       We believe in your brand; we only put forward candidates who do too

We only work with brands we love, with products that we have faith in. If we can’t get behind something, how will we talk talent into doing the same? We don’t fire over CV after CV and tick boxes with interview quotas, we only put forward high-calibre candidates who we believe are the right fit for your company’s ambition, ethos and brand.

 3.       Amidst a digital skills shortage, we know where to find talent

The European Commission has predicted a shortage of up to 825,000 ICT professionals by the end of the decade – in an already scarce market, that’s a pretty scary thought. We’re immersed in the tech industry and pride ourselves on our knowledge and experience. We have access to tonnes of industry contacts, attend digital events locally and nationally, and have an in-house database of thousands of exceptional candidates, so even in a challenging market we can source your ideal hire.

 4.       We work with you, not for you

‘One size fits all’ doesn’t work for us. Start-ups are all different shapes and sizes – ever-changing due to investment and growth. We’re no stranger to the ups and downs of start-up life, so we provide a bespoke service to deal with this, helping you to have more of the ‘ups’ and less of the ‘downs’.

 5.       We save you time and money

We don’t simply charge a 20% fee – we know that doesn’t work for everyone. We create flexible packages specifically designed for your business. Rather than paying through the nose to recruit an individual here, and another there, you’ll have a cost-effective plan in place to hire the best talent at the best prices. It works for Leicester; it’ll work for you too.

 6.       We help you to grow your business

We work as an extension of your team, so once a job is filled we don’t just forget about you until you’re ready to hire again. We know how quickly start-ups grow and how difficult it can be to find the right team to grow with it. We can help you to develop and implement a talent management strategy, so you can plan ahead and don’t get burdened with uncontrollable growth and nobody to drive it!


MRJ Recruitment

Queens Chambers, 5 John Dalton Street, Manchester, M2 6ET