One’s Perception : Truly One’s Reality?

Harriet Turner’s thought piece:

When thinking about the lessons and advice shared on the topic of Employment Branding, a few key truths stick out in my mind which I think are applicable to the services JDT Recruitment offer; our point of difference; innovations set out to improve our industry.

There are 3 Stages to recruiting the right staff.
1. Attraction,
2. Engagement,
3. Retention.
In recruitment, we’re often focused mainly on the first two stages.

At the #WellyRecMeetup the first point was made by John Rice when he said that often in recruitment (about 90% of the time), the work we do is contingent. Which is to say, as recruiter’s we can’t talk about who the employer is throughout the Attract stage when working with an un-retained brand (contingency process) – and so we must talk about other factors, such as the type of projects or the location or the salary offered.

However, from an employer’s perspective, this is not aligned to what is most useful and beneficial to their company, or to their brand.
As an employer, you will most likely pride yourself  (or I at least HOPE you will) in the culture and working environment of your workplace.

Yes – the work you do and the standard and quality of the projects you deliver are important.
And yes – you also pay your staff well and reward those who are loyal.
But good employers know that both of these things don’t matter unless you have the right people doing your work in the right way.
And as Paul Greenway asked;
What do you stand for?
What do you stake your reputation on?

Your corporate culture, the values you hold and the relationships you keep with stakeholders both within and without of your business are what differentiate you from your competitors – and the right candidate will be someone who understands and fits with that brand.
Your brand matters.

Today we’re lucky enough to have modern tools available to be more effective than ever in our brand campaigning.
Sarah and Vanessa are our Media-whizz’s, and through the industry connections in JDT, we have access to the attention of literally THOUSANDS of people in our industry – all from without leaving our desks.

Furthermore, our day is filled with phone calls, emails and meetings seeking connections within those connections. We constantly and actively search for a conversation with that singular golden needle in the haystack that is going to be the perfect fit for what you need.
Recruitment is a noisy process.

The question is, how much of that noise should be about you?
About your culture?
About what you stand for, your reputation and your employment brand?

If asking a candidate; how do you want to be represented? What is your personal brand? What is your point of difference? Where will you thrive as an individual? Where will you feel most accepted as part of a team?

At JDT, we care about BOTH our candidates and clients; recruitment is a personal business (or it should be).
Because the truth is, we’re not dealing with needles and haystacks, we’re dealing with real three dimensional people with their own values, reputations and way of doing things.
And we’re representing businesses when we do it.

And so going back to the start of this monologue, I would argue that we care about the third stage too.
We don’t just want to Attract and Engage staff for you, but we also want you to Retain them. Much of that is down to your strategy in delivering truth to your branding proposition. You need to walk the walk if we are going to talk the talk.

We want staff to be happy in the role they land.
We want them to do great work and to go on to be your best success story.
Because after it’s all said and done, your success story is our success story – and it is your reputation that is helping build our brand too.

Link with Harriet:

Year one down – and we will certainly keep on, keeping on!

It’s with great pride that I am able to announce our first official year has just ticked over. It has been an interesting ride for all involved that has included all the new learning and teething pains that are normal for a new business and its owner to experience.

We have worked with some of the industries oldest and best; as well as new emerging businesses, and even some brands that will be in for a change through acquisitions and re-branding over the next few months.

We are gaining excellent repeat business; many new vacancies called in on an almost daily basis. Our marketing strategy is helping develop our brand across the country; with a response that has left us with an overall optimistic outlook for the future.

Throughout 2015 we placed talented individuals across the North and South Islands and expect to do the same in our second year. Majority have been within the Commercial Building sector, followed by Civil Contractors and Client/Consultancy roles.

Our new website ( launched a few weeks ago which include our new Job Portal and Blog page. We have also grown to 4 staff with Vanessa Gardner joining us as a Senior Consultant. She brings a good working knowledge in both the Civil and Property fields and will be a certain asset to our growing team.

I extend a massive thank you to all that have been involved in the successful year; candidates, clients and contracting staff especially. Daniel Watts of wattscreative for the excellent work in helping me build our brand. Harriet Turner for your hard work in accelerating our growth. The biggest thank you goes to Sarah Exley for providing such a strong support system. You are a great mother, partner and excellent social marketing resource adding value to our story. (literally on our Blog)

Ok, I have said my piece. Now lets keep on keeping on.

– Jake Theron



$50 million gondola proposal for Queenstown

A $50 million proposal has been made for the Queenstown-Remarkables alpine area, made by development company Porter Group Ltd.

The 9.8km long gondola would operate year-round; comprising of 140 eight-person cabins, with a vertical climb of 1270 metres.

“In winter the proposed gondola will give skiers, boarders and sightseers easy access to NZSki’s facilities. It will further boost Queenstown’s world-class visitor experience, and has the potential to deliver immeasurable economic benefits to the resort town’s many businesses,” says leading New Zealand tourism consultant Stephen Hamilton.

Submissions have been lodged with the Queenstown Lakes District Council, and a resource consent application will be lodged early next year. The gondola is estimated to take up to 18 months to build.

Read more:

Wynyard Quarter a winner in world waterfront awards

It’s great to see New Zealand projects continuing to win awards on the global stage.

Recently, Panuku Development Auckland won Excellence for the urban renewal of the Wynyard Quarter, at the Waterfront Awards in Washington, D.C.

Construction is underway on 500 apartments, townhouses and 48,000 sqm of commercial space.

Panuku Development Auckland chief executive John Dalzell has explained the huge honour the award is, as the entry was competing against some waterfront development projects in Europe, Asia and North America.

A tale of two cities – AECOM survey results

The latest AECOM nationwide construction industry sentiment survey has found New Zealand’s infrastructure and building industry is defined by two contrasting poles – Auckland and Christchurch.

AECOM has explained results show that four years on from the Christchurch earthquake disaster, recognition of a longer, slower rebuild rather than a peak is broadening. This is shown by a dip in confidence – by 27% over the past 18 months – and easing workload expectations.

Importantly, though, while sentiment has moderated for the region, it does remain strong overall and more in line with a long-term outlook. There is a slowing of residential construction as the rebuild moves into the commercial phase.

Comparatively, positive sentiment was strong for the upper North Island, with 97% of survey respondents anticipating continuing growth in the industry, while skills and materials shortages remain one of the industry’s most significant and persistent challenges. New Zealand faces ongoing difficulties in increasing the volume of workers with technical capabilities and creating a more productive, skilled workforce.

“Of note, [the survey] highlights a continued disconnect between those involved in the respective investment and delivery sides of the infrastructure market…

“As an industry, we are continually challenged to do ‘more-for-less’. Lifting productivity in an environment of financial constraint means we need to invest in innovation and technology to achieve these competitive advantages,” said John Bridgman, AECOM Managing Director – New Zealand.”


Video interviewing on the rise

Sometimes called “MeVs”, video CVs (video interviewing) have the capacity to convey a greater depth of information than a traditional paper CV. Recent insight from AAGE has shown that 83% of employers believe paper CVs fail to adequately convey some crucial traits.

Employers look for far more than qualifications or relevant experience. Obviously communication skills and ‘team-fit’ are also important. MeV-appropriate industries will adopt this practice more and more as part of their recruitment process.

Hawkins Construction has been vocal about their use of video technology in recruitment and in meeting candidates. They also, like many companies, utilise a video channel to inform the public about their projects.

One big benefit of video interviewing will mean a quicker turnaround during the recruitment process.

It will also be interesting to see how video-interviewing either exacerbates or mitigates bias. Whilst providing the ability to judge a candidate based on appearance and other factors, it might also lessen bias that occurs when certain characteristics are read from a CV without first meeting that person.

Another aspect to consider should be the use of video interviewing ‘clients’ or workplaces. Turn the spotlight around on them; why should someone apply to work at their organisation? Do they come across as an appealing workplace to their ideal candidates?

We at JDT Recruitment see this as an exciting avenue developing for the recruitment industry.

More on video interviewing:

‘Solar city’ living

A 4,000-dwelling development planned for Canberra is being called Australia’s first mandated solar community, as there is a minimum solar energy requirement for each dwelling.

Each residence in Capital Estate Developments’ project will be required to have a solar system capable of producing enough energy to cover half the average Australian annual household consumption.

Capital Estate estimates this will reduce the carbon footprint of the entire ‘suburb’ by a third.

Many countries around the world are setting targets, introducing polices for promoting renewable energy and reducing emissions, with Australia and USA leading the front on developing these so-called ‘solar cities’. Interestingly, India is also making great progress on the issue.

Essentially, through a combination of enhancing supply from renewable energy sources in the city and utilising energy efficiency measures, this really should be a minimum requirement for city-planning for all countries developing for the future.

A great read on harnessing solar power in NZ:
“Germany, on average, gets as much sunshine as Alaska yet last summer it harnessed 80% of its electricity from solar panels. Here’s why Auckland needs to seriously consider solar as a mainstream source of energy given the city produces more carbon emissions than New York and London. ”

Largest playground in NZ opens

The Margaret Mahy Family Playground is a positive outcome of the Christchurch rebuild and has finally opened. The $20 million playground sits on a 1 hectare block in the central city.

Project development director Rob Kerr has explained the key concepts came from 8 & 9 year-olds – who wanted ‘lots of water’, flying foxes, tunnels and slides. As such, the playground has a high climbing tower, ‘mega-slide’, swings, spider climbing nets, a splash pad with water cannons, jets and sprinklers, among other amenities.

Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA) chief executive John Ombler said the playground was believed to be one of the largest in the southern hemisphere.

The design of the playground was led by Opus, with the job heading to Australian company PlayRope and a total site budget of $13 million.

Getting it Done: Utilising Womens’ Skills in the Workforce

Getting it Done: Utilising Womens’ Skills in the Workforce is a shared learning tool for employers, industry groups and training organisations to tackle the under-utilisation of women in trades.

In 2013 the Ministry for Women surveyed 500 Canterbury women about the construction industry. It found over half of respondents would consider employment in the industry, but were often put-off as jobs were viewed as ‘for men only’.

However, especially since the Christchurch earthquake, employers and recruiters alike are growing in appreciating the need to overtly call for women in employment advertising. A factor in this has been advances in health and safety issues; there is now less of a perception women are physically unable to ‘do the job’.

As the pressure for skilled staff continues to grow alongside a growing industry, so too grows the need to recruit all demographics. Any industry is always supported through diversity. The Stronger Christchurch Infrastructure Rebuild Team Women in Construction group was formed to raise the visibility of women working in the construction industry.

Even more exciting is a New Zealand female QS winning two high-profile Australian construction industry awards. Christchurch’s Lucy Eng, a project and cost manager with AECOM, won the Australian Institute of Quantity Surveyors Infinite Value Women in Construction and Professional of the Year awards.



Building the Future – inhabiting the oceans

Mesmerizing to look at, self-sustaining underwater cities will be a part of our world by 2030 – merely 15 years away. Japan-based Shimizu Corporation believes the solution to a shortage of land for housing lies in expanding offshore – literally. It makes sense; approximately 70% of the earth’s surface is covered by the ocean.

Shimizu’s concept seeks to ‘harness the power of the deep sea…to resolve five current crises revolving around food, energy, water, carbon dioxide and natural resources’.

Self-sustaining underwater cities comprising a floating dome and helical structure descending to the ocean floor could be home for up to 5000 people each.

The structures would be built using 3D-printing technology, and would also utilise hydraulic technology to desalinate water for consumption. As if that wasn’t impressive enough, micro-organisms could be used to turn carbon dioxide into methane, which would fuel power generators along the 14km-length of the spiral.

Shimizu predicts that the helical structure will cost NZ$36 billion to build.

This is SUCH a fascinating read: