Read Up. Skill Up. Be In Demand
10 Minutes With Louise Triance
As the founder and owner of one of the UK’s most popular recruitment websites, Louise Triance has worked hard to get to the position she’s at today. UKRecruiter is an extensive network that was established before the concept of recruitment networking even existed. The website is the main source for all things concerning the UK Recruitment industry. Louise Triance makes sure she keeps her clients and users invested in her work with her thought-provoking events, podcasts and blog posts to assist those in the industry.
However, this wasn’t always the industry Louise wanted to enter. When she was just 18-years-old, Louise did a psychometric test that determined her high suitability as a prison warden. The idea of becoming a prison warden wasn’t for her, which left her wondering what she would want to do in the near future.
Thankfully we got the chance to talk with Louise and discuss her accomplishments since the website’s creation 20 years ago. Not only does Louise know the ins and outs of the industry, but she is also a trained psychometric assessor, a judge for the Global Recruiter Awards and the Deputy Chair of the National Online Recruitment Awards.
In a short sentence, tell me what ‘UK Recruiter’ is about?
It’s a community site for recruiters in agencies or HR space, primarily in the UK.
Over the last 21 years, what did you have to do to make sure ‘UK Recruiter’ was different from the rest?
Well, I didn’t start off with a lot of competition which helped. We were pretty unique with what we were doing at the start and I’ve always looked for ideas outside the industry rather than looking at what my competitors are doing. I’ve tried to add new elements to the community as we went along, adopting things like discussion forums which we added on 15 years ago. Since the start, we always try to introduce new things to see how they work in the community.
Where do you get your inspiration from in terms of making sure your website is different?
Part of it is by talking to people who are in the community. It’s a very communicative space, so I’ll speak to somebody who will say, “I’d really like to find a way to do x, y or z” and I think, “do you know what, I could do that.” Part of it is just other people saying to me, “I wish you could help me with this problem”. That’s what we say in many of our events.
Speaking of events, what do you hope attendees get out of it?
I think it’s actionable learning, worthwhile connections or hard-to-get-knowledge (specifically hard to get elsewhere knowledge). Something they couldn’t easily access on the internet, so it’s different each time.
Well, what are the two “do’s” and “don’ts” of recruitment for those entering this competitive industry?
I believe very very strongly that recruiters should treat other people as they want to be treated themselves. It sounds old fashioned, but I very strongly believe that you should treat them as you want them to treat you. Another thing I very strongly believe is that open communication is important, it’s not very complex. Those are my two beliefs for “do’s”. What I don’t think recruiters should do is waste time on trying to – I don’t know how to say this – but recruiters have a bit of a reputation for selling against their competition by bad-mouthing them, by putting their competition down. I still see recruiters do that a lot and I think it’s a total waste of energy. Instead of focusing on what your competitors are doing (obviously being aware of it).
With more and more recruitment companies providing a lot of competition, how do you keep users and clients interested at all times?
I think I have an advantage after twenty years of doing this, it’s that people know they can trust me. The stuff that I’m asking them to read or attend, I hope that they can trust that there is value in it. Furthermore, word of mouth is important because obviously there are new people coming into this space all the time but my reputation, hopefully, allows them to realise the benefits of listening to me and to come into the things I do.
Do you think this is the reason you’ve been written off as the Queen of UK Recruitment?
*laughs* I’m afraid it was a joke, but I liked it so much so I used it. I like to think I’m a nice person and maybe that’s unusual in the recruitment space.
On your LinkedIn, you mention you are a trained psychometric assessor. How effective do you think psychometric assessments really are for determining a good candidate?
I think they’re really valuable. It’s a quality product. I think that lots of recruiters believe their gut instinct and unfortunately, science proves that to be wrong, it’s not enough.
What about in situations where candidates are nervous, having panic attacks, or are having other personal issues that could affect their performance on a test. Do you think the tests allow room for mistakes in these situations?
Things like aptitude tests and field tests, I think that sort of thing [mental health etc.] should definitely be taken into consideration but I think hiring managers and recruiters do understand the situations. If your candidate says to you, “oh, I’m dyslexic” or “I’m hyper-nervous” then they should take that into consideration.
On a lighter note, name one thing you love about your job and one thing you hate?
The one thing I love, and this will sound really cheesy but it’s true, I love it when I connect two people, “You’re perfect to collaborate, you probably wouldn’t have found each other”. Genuinely still really enjoy when that happens. It’s quite a nice thing in life anyway. What do I not like? I don’t like the reputation that some of the recruitment industry still have about cowboy-ism. I don’t like being associated with that.
If you could have any superpower, what would it be and why?
I would love to be a mind reader purely because I’m nosy.
To end with, are you working on any new projects or events that you would like to share with us?
We introduced some new inspire recruitment events recently and we’re hoping that they will become events that people will help run for us all over the UK. They’re taking off now.
Louise wants these events to help people understand more about their industry. A large aim of these events is people networking with those they never thought they would grow closer to. With over 20 years of experience, Louise hopes her knowledge and trustworthiness means people can confide in her. The newest events that were recently set up are the ‘Inspire Recruitment’ events that will occur throughout the country. Inspire Recruitment aims to be a forum for new voices and be a community where everyone can share brand new ideas and opinions.