skip to main content

Grace Killick: Reflecting on my first year in Interim and Local Government

After joining Penna’s Local Government Executive Interim team last year, Grace reflects on her experience getting to know the brand-new world of ‘recruitment’.

‘Can you tell me a bit more about Interim in Local Government?’

If you were to ask me that question this time last year, I would not have been able to tell you. When I joined Penna in September of last year, I had never heard of Interim recruitment before. The first week I started, the information overload began. I never thought I would be able to take it all in, let alone understand it. Local Government is a complicated sector to learn!

After having an insightful conversation with Rachael, one of my fellow colleagues, she mentioned the stigma attached to the ‘recruitment’ job title. I thought about the times when people would ask me what I am currently doing, and how it would always feel like I needed to justify and explain why I work in recruitment. Now, when asked, I reiterate Rachel’s perfect response: We are ‘Resourcing Specialists’, we work with a purpose, and that’s to make a difference. We don’t just recruit and place candidates, there’s so much more to this.

During our first introduction into the workforce, recruitment, resourcing, and L&D sector, we had the honour of meeting and talking to an experienced HR Director. It was from this conversation that I found my interest in HR. After speaking with multiple HR professionals, I have found that no matter what area of the business they work in, they all have the same passion for helping people and having a positive impact on their peers. No matter how big or small my effect is, it is great to know that I get to help people experience new challenges, develop their skills, or even broaden their networks. I have been able to build many long-term relationships that I can proudly say I will maintain throughout my career.

The role of an Associate Consultant plays much more of a key part in our network's career than I originally realised. It is important to be honest and transparent about what the market looks like, which is challenging when the market looks very different throughout year, with no correlation or consistency with the year before. Making sure to remember tiny details about candidates and client’s lives is also just as important. Even though it doesn’t appear to be a big task, it does make a lot of difference when building a relationship with your network. I have learnt that building these types of relationships takes time, with trust taking time to build.

I will admit, the hardest part of the role is letting candidates down. I’m not a natural bearer of bad news! I found this process hard, especially providing constructive criticism to those who have been waiting for a lengthy period of time for their next opportunity. I now see this as an opportunity to offer helpful feedback and build on the relationship, hopefully adding to their successful appointment the next time around.

I wanted to keep this blog brief to introduce myself. To summarise, I am very much looking forward to the future and what my second year in Penna Interim and Local Government brings. I will continue to support and guide my network, making sure to provide the best service I can. I am always open to feedback so please feel free to let me know what I can do to support our network further. This is not just a day job, it’s my career path, my passion, and I love getting to help so many people find the perfect role for them. It’s more rewarding than I realised when I started all those months ago!

Go to previous article

How government can support local authorities in the retention of essential service delivery

Go to next article

Saluting our sisters and creating sustainable change