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Category Archives: Latest News

4 Whatever reason you want a new job

Leisure jobsLeaving your old, familiar job may be a stressful time. Your routine may change with a new job, and you will be leaving a familiar environment and workmates who have become friends.

There may come a time when something is pushing you out of your job, or the pull of something new and exciting gets too much to resist. Sometimes, a move is necessary to open up more opportunities for progression, or to enable you to earn the money you need to make your whole life easier. A move for all the right reasons is as powerful as just wanting to escape a job you no longer enjoy. You may not even be looking for a new job, but then a better opportunity opens up and suddenly you’re considering it.

As recruiters, we see many people taking up a new job for many different reasons. People come to us at different stages in their careers, and while no leisure professional is looking for a new job for exactly the same reasons, we have spotted common themes. We have come up with the five top reasons why leisure professionals feel the urge to seek a new leisure job.

If you’re a leisure operator then knowing why leisure professionals would want to come and work for you is a boon when you’re looking to attract the very best people to serve your clients. If you’re finding yourself losing precious leisure personnel, then making adjustments to your employment policies may help to improve your retention rate and keep key staff in place longer.

These reasons for finding a new leisure job will be covered in the next few weeks, so stay tuned to learn common reasons why leisure staff are seeking to make their move.

Are you wanting a new leisure job 4 …..

…..a change of scenery?

…..better pay?

…..better hours?

….better prospects?

October 2015 News round-up : experience, pastures new, and Marty McFly

October is over and Autumn is most definitely here. With Halloween out of the way and Bonfire Night imminent, we are taking a look back at what news items have resonated with us during October. It’s been another month of interesting leisure industry developments, but these are our top five picks for you.

In a survey of leisure industry employers, it was found that work experience is more important than qualifications in new employees. The lack of ‘soft skills’ was also found to be a concern. Work-based trained employees are sought-after, and many employers are now either offering a leisure and fitness apprenticeship scheme, or considering one. We put this article to our followers on LinkedIn, who thought that both experience and qualifications were equally important, and that the right attitude helps!

It was announced that US gym group 24 Hour Fitness and Canadian chain GoodLife Fitness had sealed a deal to allow members travelling across North America to use each other’s gyms, making a facility of almost 700 clubs available to members. Is this a smart response to schemes such as ClassPass, and do we think it’s something that is needed over here in the UK?

At the end of September, Nuffield Health lost their CEO, but only a few days later, his successor was announced as Steve Gray, a market veteran. We wish Steve all the best in his new role.

Fitness First

Photo: Fitness First

Breaking news mid-month was the rumours of the possible sale of Fitness First, with Sports Direct Fitness being touted as a potential buyer. No doubt we’ll hear more on this story sooner or later.

October 21st was ‘Back to The Future Day’ and was heavily celebrated on the internet with countless photos of Doc, Marty, and a few of Biff Tannen thrown in. While The Chicago Cubs had not actually won the World Series this year as shown in Back to The Future II, we are in the beginning of a wearable tech boom and could see self-tying trainers, and auto-drying clothing in the mainstream in the near future. I’m holding out for handprint door entry as standard on my next home though. It would save me an awful lot of time having to find my keys. Again.

Image: The Guardian

Marty’s self-tying trainers, and the modern-day Nike version Image: The Guardian

Find out more about what Back to the Future II correctly predicted and what it didn’t in The Guardian

What leisure industry news has caught your eye this month?

Colleges need to do more to prepare therapists for work

By Jean Wing Hing, Director of 4Leisure Recruitment.

This week, I have spent some time up in Manchester attending Professional Beauty North, one of the biggest beauty industry events in the UK. It was fantastic meeting so many new beauty industry professionals who specialise in a huge range of disciplines, and good to catch up with more familiar movers and shakers in the UK’s beauty industry.

I was also there to speak on a specialist panel on a topic entitled “How can colleges meet ever changing needs of the beauty industry? What should colleges focus on?

With our collective knowledge and experience in helping newly qualified therapists into the world of work, I was able to contribute to a discussion with other beauty industry professionals including Monika Mohindra from LoveBeautybyMM, and Liz Holmes from Virgin Active, and answer questions from the audience.

Jean at PB North September 2015

Jean Wing Hing (far right) at Professional Beauty North

The general consensus from the panel was that colleges should spend more time on preparing therapists for work. That could encompass a range of things such as interviewing, job hunting, and managing expectations.

In particular, my focus was on educating them on what the career routes look like for them and how to get there. There needs to be a concerted effort to provide a more comprehensive overview of what employers are looking for in each role and how therapists can best prepare themselves for the workplace.

I indicated that the biggest gripes employers currently had included poor timekeeping, lack of commercial focus and drive and poor customer service skills. It’s no good having a therapist who can give a fantastic massage or pedicure if they’re not showing up for appointments on time, or who don’t understand the difference a little customer service can make.

I was also keen to point out that the change in living wage is likely to have a huge impact on the sector for a number of different reasons. For example, employers are going to be increasingly demanding of commercial skills to ensure they can still drive profit, and the likelihood of smaller businesses failing due to overheads being unsustainable. They are going to expect more for their larger wage bill.

The panel encouraged colleges to drive wider, more generalist skill sets rather than highly specialised ones often driven by media trends, where there may be a lack of employment opportunities. In a skilled job such as beauty therapy, commercial focus and customer care are equally as important – the employer has a better quality worker, and the employee has a set of qualities that can be carried through their career no matter what specialism is currently in demand.

Our message to colleges is that teaching specialized technical skills is not enough for the current and future demands of the beauty industry. This is about having colleges focus on specific skills and also in equipping their students with relevant business skills that can be adapted no matter what the ever-changing beauty industry can throw at them. The latest massage technique may one day go out of fashion, but commercially focused therapists will always be in demand.

Want to know more about our college-to-work beauty therapy scheme Rising Stars?

Rising Star programme from 4Leisure Recruitment

Rising Star – from spa and beauty training to spa and beauty jobs

Have you heard of our Rising Star programme?

Our Rising Spa programme has been designed by a team of industry experts to bridge to gap between spa and beauty training, and spa and beauty jobs.

New therapists, while well qualified and talented, often face barriers when it comes to making the move into the spa and beauty industry. The programme is designed to give rising stars a head start on their spa and beauty career path.

As specialist spa and beauty recruiters, we work with a range of businesses and recognised brands, who work with us to help develop the spa and beauty therapists of the future.

How does it work?

For newly-qualified therapists, we provide advice and training through workshops and seminars, and provide temporary and contract placements in spas and salons throughout the UK. We provide industry-specific training in areas such as retail sales, complaint handling, general conduct, and preparation for work.

We keep our therapists updated on new training and development opportunities and provide ongoing support.

Spa and beauty jobs

Ultimately, the aim is to help give therapists the skills they need to make the move from beauty student to beauty professional. We equip our therapists with the skills and attitude that beauty and spa employers seek, and work with employers to tailor the Rising Star Programme to adapt to the changing demands of the spa and beauty industry.

We then help graduates to find their perfect spa and beauty job, and employers to find their ideal therapists.

For more information about the Rising Star Programme and how you can be involved either as a therapist or an employer…..

Call us on 01895 450640

Or e-mail spa@4leisurerecruitment.co.uk

Rising Star programme from 4Leisure Recruitment

Spa and beauty jobs are one of our many leisure industry specialities, which also includes fitness jobs, lifeguard jobs, and leisure executive positions. Our collective years of experience both as leisure professionals ourselves and as recruiters has shown us that often the leap from leisure student to leisure professional can be daunting and frustrating.

Although courses equip students with the skills they need to carry out a leisure role, sometimes they don’t teach skills which employers are looking for, such as customer service, or general work skills. A spa therapist may leave college being able to administer a very good massage yet unable to upsell or be unfamiliar with the rigours of a working day. Rising Stars is a bridging programme which fills in the gaps.

Our Rising Stars programme aims to be the benchmark in helping to produce spa therapists who are not only super-talented but super-employable and a fantastic asset to their employers, and to the spa and beauty industry in the future.

August 2015 News round-up : acquisitions, take-overs, and naked selfies.

August is often a fun time of year in the leisure industry and this year has been no exception. A look back over this month’s news has shown a dominance of stories of fitness operators restructuring, and re-emerging with new business models, proving that the fitness industry has the ability to adapt to changing customer demands and expectations. The last couple of years has taken some casualties in the fitness sector but the phoenix seems to be rising from the ashes.

First up, Health Club Management reported the growth of Total Fitness through acquisitions, and re-opening of former sites closed under the previous restructuring. There’s still no word on their rumoured partnership with ASDA, though if you’re in Swindon, keep your eyes peeled.

Then Health Club Management reported that Anytime Fitness has reached the milestone of 50 clubs in its bid to be the UK’s largest fitness operator, a title currently held by Pure Gym. They could reach 80 sites by the end of 2015, and is looking at a further 150 sites. This has been a phenomenal growth by a company only five years old.

Talking of Pure Gym, Leisure Management reported that the proposed takeover of LA Fitness by Pure Gym had been given the go-ahead by the Competition and Markets Authority. Pure Gym can now press on with plans to convert the majority of LA Fitness sites using Pure Gym’s more budget model, removing less-profitable aspects such as swimming pools, and excess staff. The process is expected to be complete by Summer 2016.

Pure Gym cleared for a takeover of LA Fitness, from Leisure Management

Health Club Management reported that Clevedon’s Hand Stadium will be managed by Everyone Active as part of a 10-year deal which will see £500k of investment with a view to providing a much-improved community facility. We wish Everyone Active all the best in this fantastic venture.

And finally, a story which grabbed our attention was the one of a man applying for a job who sent naked selfies of himself via text to the hiring manager. Maybe he was hoping his chances would increase, but I don’t think it impressed the manager who reported him to local police. He was told not to contact the manager again. No word on his current employment status. I’m sure there’s a job for him somewhere. Maybe. In case you’re wondering, no it’s not a tactic we’d recommend.

What leisure industry news has caught your eye this month?

Careers evening with Isis Beauty Academy

4Leisure Recruitment are pleased to announce that we will be visiting staff and students of Isis Beauty Academy next week for a careers evening. The exclusive event will enable us to talk to students about the opportunities within the spa and beauty sector, and find some fantastic future talent for our clients’ spas and salons.

All Isis Beauty Academy students and graduates are welcome to attend. Please call Isis Beauty Academy on 01932 23 23 22 to confirm your attendance. Places are limited.

Our spa and beauty industry specialists will be there from 5:30pm to meet and advise students and graduates on suitable jobs, and to find the career path that’s right for them. We will also be providing information about our Rising Star Programme, which has been designed to help aspiring beauty professionals bridge the gap between education and employment through a series of training opportunities, work experience, and ongoing support.

We are proud to work with Isis Beauty Academy, one of the leading providers of education and training in the Spa and Beauty sector. They offer a huge range of courses in many different disciplines including facials and skin care, tanning, and electrolysis. For more information please visit Isis Beauty Academy

You can follow on social media using #YourFutureInYourHands.

Follow Isis Beauty Academy on Twitter @IsisBeautyAcd

Careers evening

Isis Beauty Academy, 14 Church Street, Walton-on-Thames

27th August – 5:30pm

Tweet us @4LeisureSpa if you’re planning on coming along.

Isis Beauty Academy

Fusion Lifestyle Quarterly Regional Awards

James Procter was invited to present an award to a deserving nominee at the recent Fusion Lifestyle Quarterly Regional Awards.

The event was a wonderfully informal gathering, taking advantage of the recent sunshine. Congratulations to Rob Clare who received the award for Service Excellence. It was fantastic to meet him, and his fellow nominees.

Fusion Lifestyle regional Awards July 2015 winner

Rob Clare receiving his award from 4Leisure Recruitment’s James Procter

It was also brilliant to catch up with Tremaine Walrond, one of our own former recruits, who was himself nominated in a category. Always fantastic to see one of our finds achieving in their chosen field.

Fusion Lifestyle regional Awards July 2015

Catching up with Tremaine Walrond at the Fusion Lifestyle Quarterly Regional Awards

Paying candidates to attend interviews?

This article in Recruitment Grapevine has really got us thinking this week http://www.recruitmentgrapevine.com/article/2015-06-15-boss-offers-1000-to-candidates-reaching-final-stage-of-interview

In essence, the author – a company boss – has decided that rather than pay recruiters for their time in finding the right candidates, he will pay £1000 to any applicant that makes it through to the more time-consuming final interview stage.

Leisure recruitment

As the final interview stage requires preparing a marketing strategy and presenting it, the assumption is that by paying candidates for this time and effort, it means that passive candidates are more invigorated to apply. He figures that a £5k spend to get five good candidates in the running, for example, is more worthwhile than paying a recruiter. In some respects he could be right. He’s possibly had a bad experience with a recruitment agency in the past, or maybe he just wants to try something a bit different and see how it goes.

It’s noble to think of compensating a candidate for their time and efforts. After all, we understand the frustration of working hard to try to land a job, maybe even taking time off your current role to prepare, only to see it all go to waste, or worse, the prospective company later using the good ideas you spent your time and experience creating for the interview. This way, at least the candidate gets something out of it, although care would need to be taken to see that the payment is not used as an excuse to make the selection process more tiresome and frustrating than it really needs to be.

Do we think it’s a good idea?

In our opinion, if someone needs motivating to get to final interview, they’re probably not right for the role. Ultimately, it changes the natural selection process of the interviews. Rather than the talent filtering to the top through a comprehensive interview process, the role is likely to land with someone who is motivated but not necessarily the most skilled.

Another possibility is that it creates a culture of people applying for the job, and playing the application process, in order to claim their £1000 reward. How long would it take you to earn £1000? From this perspective, it’s not hard to see why someone would spend a few hours of their time, even up to a couple of days happy to go through the preparation required for an intensive final interview.

Candidate shortage or not, I think it’s unlikely to achieve the desired results.

What’s the alternative?

Well, is paying a recruiter really so bad? It’s not as if we sit around doing nothing apart from pocketing the cash. Aside from advertising the role, drawing up a specification, putting the job under the noses of our pool of both active and known passive candidates, vetting potential candidates, doing background checks, carrying out preliminary interviews, negotiating on your behalf, and helping the candidate to settle in with you, I suppose we could be worth a few quid!

Another idea is to turn the whole thing on its head and make candidates pay to apply for a job with you, or to get to the important final interview. This way you only get candidates who are absolutely serious about the job with your company. You can always refund them later. With this process, you may even uncover a few gems who would not have got to the final stages under more traditional means, but you’ll certainly get fewer time wasters.

Verdict – paying candidates for their time could work in theory, but we suspect that this will pan out to be little more than a PR stunt, and we’re sure we’ll still be leisure industry recruiters this time next year.

The Breast Cancer Care Pink Ribbonwalk – a training update

Our Business Development Exec Ali is currently in training for the upcoming 20 mile London at Night Pink Ribbonwalk for Breast Cancer Care. With the walk only days away and 20 miles being no mean feat, we are checking in with Ali to see how she is getting on.

Ali says…..

“I started training on 1st May, just power walking with the dog thirty minutes every day, covering a few miles for a couple of weeks. The dog loved it – on busy days he sometimes just gets to go out in the back garden.

I decided that from the 15th of May I needed to step it up a bit so I started walking up to an hour every day. I also joined a Hot Yoga class in my village in which I am now addicted to. I have never done anything so tough as this – every day you get a tiny bit better, that little bit stronger, and I’ve started to see a bit of muscle definition.

Last week was bad as I was struck down with a nasty cold and chest infection. I did nothing but enjoyed the rest.

Today I got up at the crack of dawn, walked the dog 6 miles, and this evening after work I will do Hot Yoga. This will be my training plan for the rest of the week, except on Sunday, when I will be taking a back pack with me and do a good 10 to 12 miles instead.

Now when my dog sees me get the trainers on he gets his lead and heads off! I’m not the only one well trained.”

Training for the 20 mile Pink Ribbonwalk

Learn more about the Pink Ribbonwalk.

Breast Cancer Care are in desperate need of qualified massage therapists to assist walkers at their Pink Ribbonwalks. If you are able to volunteer your time and skills, then please get in touch ASAP with Ali and the 4Leisure Recruitment team on 01895 450640

You can sponsor Ali in her quest to raise money for Breast Cancer Care at www.justgiving.com/PRW15-Alison-Mcalister/

Training for the 20 mile Pink Ribbonwalk

Cucumbers – why we love them!

The humble cucumber is a fantastic fruit – yes, it is really a fruit and not a vegetable!

Beauty therapists know the benefits of using cucumbers, and they have been used to reduce eye puffiness for many years.

National cucumber day

Here are some more facts about a much under-rated fruit

  • There are many different varieties of cucumber, including slicing, pickling, and burplees.
  • They were originally grown in southern Asia, but now are grown the world over.
  • Cucumbers are not all green – you can also get them in yellow. Some varieties are spherical rather than elongated.

But why are they good for your eyes?

  • First of all, cucumbers contain ascorbic acid which reduces water retention, reducing swelling
  • Because they have a high water content, cucumbers are fantastic moisturisers
  • They contain antioxidants, which makes it a great anti-aging product
  • Cucumbers have a lightening effect, reducing dark circles
  • They can be cooled, making them soothing to your skin

On top of all that, they contain less chemicals, and are cheaper than a man-made beauty product. Cucumbers are a low-cost resource for your beauty spa or salon.

Need convincing? Read this from The Huffington Post and make cucumbers your best beauty buy!

Some of Our Clients