Sylvestre Blavet assumed the role of chairman of the board of French online staffing group Freelance.com in January 2019 and was appointed as interim CEO, a role he held until mid-2019. He is also chairman of Paris-based CBV Ingénierie Group, the largest shareholder of Freelance.com. Leadership comes naturally to Blavet, having previously been president of human resources companies such as Petrolis, AD’missions portage salarial and Gpc S.A. Freelance.com, which reported €187 million in sales in 2018, aims to exceed €220 million in sales this year and surpass €500 million within five years.
Richard MacMillan is CEO of ICS Group, the largest healthcare staffing firm in Europe. He led ICS Group’s 2018 acquisition of London-based ProClinical Limited, establishing the group’s global presence in life sciences staffing and creating the platform to expand its healthcare workforce solutions across Europe and the US. MacMillan is working with the wider ICS team to support digital enablement and application of data throughout the business. This strategy fueled initiatives across the group since mid-2018, including the launch of new digital therapy and diagnostics services. MacMillan joined Pulse, a trading division of ICS, in 2006 as CEO; Pulse merged with ICS in 2010 and he has led the business since then.
Neil Carberry became chief executive of the Recruitment and Employment Confederation in June 2018.
The REC has been vocal under Carberry’s leadership in the media and government, representing recruitment in the economic debate. He began his recruitment career with executive search firm Fraser Watson in 1999 before earning a post-graduate degree in HR at the London School of Economics and joining the Confederation of British Industry in 2004. He is a member of the council of the conciliation service ACAS and of the Low Pay Commission and an ambassador for British charity Astriid, which connects businesses with professionals who have long-term health problems but who still have many skills to offer.
Nigel Heap is regional managing director at Hays, responsible for the UK, Ireland, EMEA and Australia/New Zealand businesses. He joined Hays UK in 1988 as a trainee consultant. By 1997, he was managing director of Hays Australia, and subsequently expanded operations to New Zealand, Hong Kong, China, Japan, Singapore and Malaysia. Heap became managing director of Asia Pacific in 2006 and has been UK & Ireland managing director and chairman of the Asia Pacific business since 2012. In 2017, he assumed responsibility for 11 countries in Europe and the Middle East as well as the UK. In July 2018, Heap appointed a new managing director for Hays’ UK and Ireland business, but he retains responsibility for that region as well as EMEA and Australia/New Zealand businesses on the Hays management board.
Peter Searle joined Airswift in 2015 as CEO and became executive chairman in June 2018. He has significantly contributed to many recruitment brands, most notably The Adecco Group, where he was CEO of UK & Ireland. Searle also led and sold two companies, Delphi and Spring, to Adecco and has been instrumental in developing central recruiting, RPO and MSP global business models. Airswift in the past year expanded geographically — including new premises in Mauritania, Senegal, Guyana and Mexico — and also developed a fourth super-hub in the Middle East. The firm completed a two-year integration program following the merger of Swift Worldwide Resources and Air Energi in early 2016, and also established its global mobility service line offering.
James Reed is chairman of Reed Global, which has 3,000 employees working in 140 locations worldwide. Reed joined the company in 1992 after graduating from Harvard Business School. He is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and was formerly an associate of the Prime Minister’s Delivery Unit and a member of the Institute for Public Policy Research’s business-led taskforce on race equality and diversity in the private sector. Reed is a regular media commentator on work and labour market issues. He is also author of the best-selling books Why You? 101 Interview Questions You’ll Never Fear Again and The 7 Second CV, and co-author of Put Your Mindset to Work.
Kevin Freeguard was appointed CEO and a board member of UK-based Gattaca in October 2018. His experience within technology businesses, and the sector in general, was a key motivation for his joining a recruitment firm with a focus in the technology space. Freeguard has already put a plan in place for the specialist technology and engineering recruitment firm’s future; it includes simplifying operations, removing less stable and non-core businesses and building core resilient businesses such as UK engineering, UK IT and North American operations through the company’s Matchtech, Networkers and Gattaca Solutions brands. Gattaca reported 2018 group revenue of £667.5 million and has 810 employees worldwide in 13 offices.
Julia Robertson has long been motivated by her belief that there is “a better way to do recruitment”. She became Impellam Group’s chief executive officer in 2013 after joining Tate in 1996, which was later acquired to form part of what is now Impellam Group. Prior to Impellam Group, Robertson was chief executive of the Institute of Employment Consultants (now known as the Recruitment & Employment Confederation), the professional body for the UK recruitment industry. She also founded her own recruitment business in 1986, which was sold to the Group alongside Tate. In 2016, Robertson received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Institute of Recruitment Professionals.
Ann Swain is the first global CEO of APSCo, an international trade body representing the professional recruitment sector in the UK, Germany, Singapore and Australia. APSCo, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary, last year reached over 1,000 UK members and successfully lobbied the government to extend the time that UK recruitment businesses have to prepare for the extension of IR35 rules into the private sector. Swain helped design and launch APSCo’s executive MBA in human capital programme in 2019. Developed in collaboration with Grant Thornton UK LLP and delivered by Cranfi eld School of Management, the programme is the fi rst qualifi cation of its kind tailored specifically to those within the recruitment, staffing and HR arenas.
Rosario Rasizza, CEO of Openjobmetis SpA, started his career in 1997 when he opened Temporary S.p.A. of Milan in Varese. In 2001, he guided the launch of a new employment agency and contributed toward the creation of Openjob SpA. Between 2003 and 2011, he guided Openjob through a series of acquisitions. In 2008, he was appointed Knight of the Italian Republic as well as chairman of Assosomm, the Italian Association of Employment Agencies, and in 2018 he became Officer of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic. In 2018, Openjobmetis reported revenue of €594.3 million.