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Are there actually any jobs out there?

#1 Are there actually any jobs out there?
01/02/2010 13:45


Are there any real jobs out there, I have been searching for the best part of a year and seem to find that agencies are just farming CV's with no real jobs at the end.

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#2 RE: Are there actually any jobs out there?
01/02/2010 14:38

Bharat to Bharat (#1)

I Meant to add that this is in relation to the UK consulting job market

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#3 RE: Are there actually any jobs out there?
01/02/2010 16:42

Jack to Bharat (#1)

I feel exactly the same. I have been an independent for seven years and up until a year ago secured most of my jobs by working as an associate with mid sized consultancies. As these consultancies have them selves struggled during the recession, I have over the last six months resorted to using agencies and unfortunately had a similar experience to you.

A lot has been written on this site about dodgy agencies posting jobs that don't really exist so I won't go there again. All I can say is you are not alone and you will just have to keep on looking. Tony Restell's presentation last Friday was very useful so you might get some tips if you listen to the recording on this site. Good luck!

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#4 RE: Are there actually any jobs out there?
01/02/2010 20:16

turbo to deleted (#0)

Same here.

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#5 RE: Are there actually any jobs out there?
02/02/2010 14:11

anon to turbo (#4)

There are no many consulting jobs out there, reality is financial services and public sector used to be a big driver for consulting projects of all sorts, in spite of 'record profits' for financial institutions there is a lot of expectation of structural changes and waiting for the right moment to invest in consultancy. In the case of public sector there is a budget deficit and elections' year.

There is no much thing going on at the moment, unless for very specific and experienced skill sets, which I recon only few people will fill up the profile.

In my experience recruitment agencies are a waste of time and in many cases very unprofessional, posting ads for nonexistent jobs, snatching information from you, etc. Just have a look at some job sites and these dodgy agencies always post the same jobs for months, so I wouldn't trust them.

Get rid of the intermediary and contact directly the recruiters...

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#6 RE: Are there actually any jobs out there?
02/02/2010 15:26

Tony Restell ( to anon (#5)

Anon - I don't think anyone would disagree with you that there are some unprofessional recruitment consultants out there. However, I should state as a fact that even in today's cost-conscious market over 50% of consulting firms' hires are being made via recruitment agencies rather than sourced direct. So it's a dangerous route indeed to shut the door on working with agencies altogether.

There are numerous reasons why consulting firms still choose to recruit this way, I covered this in my candidate briefing 10 days ago - which if you're interested can be <a href=>viewed here</a>

Tony Restell

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#7 RE: Are there actually any jobs out there?
02/02/2010 17:31

Mr Cool to anon (#5)

I agree with Tony. A good agent will get you into places that direct contact would not. A good agent will get an extra 10% on your package. A good agent will close the deal sooner than you could directly. A good agent will stay in touch and take an interest in your career progression.

A good agent will do all of these things because that’s how they make more money!

If when you go to the pub only the ugly girls want to talk to you, would you say that all girls are a waste of time? Either stop talking to the ugly girls, or accept that there is a reason the nice girls are avoiding you.

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#8 RE: Are there actually any jobs out there?
02/02/2010 21:54

Also Looking to Mr Cool (#7)

In response to the idiot Mr Cool. Why not kick somebody a bit harder when they are down.

I am quite sure that you do actually believe the rubbish you have posted, and probably tell yourself that you will never find yourself 'looking for a job'.

I trust that for your sake you never actually join the real world as it will come as a huge shock. Guess what - a lot of people with your attitude have found themselves 'looking for a job' in the world of today, only to wish that they had not made the same stupid statements that you have posted.

Try reading ALL the threads from ALL the people currently looking for jobs, you MIGHT learn something.

I doubt it.

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#9 RE: Are there actually any jobs out there?
03/02/2010 00:32

Mrs Cool to Also Looking (#8)

So that's why you stopped going to the pub Mr Cool... Lucky me.

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#10 RE: Are there actually any jobs out there?
03/02/2010 09:45

Mr Cool to Also Looking (#8)

Hi Also Looking,

“Idiot”, “Attitude” “Might learn something” – Ooh dear. I think you might have grasped the wrong end of the stick here. I completely disagree with any opinion that it is best to simply bypass agents, but none of my comments were intended as schadenfreude.

Three times in the last fifteen years I have found myself out of a job; twice after start-ups I joined as a calculated gamble simply didn’t make the grade, and once after I chose to take a three year trip around the world. On each occasion I had to deal with the stigma, loss of confidence and financial impact of not being in employment. The first time I set out on a mission to get my name in front of every agent and to tailor my CV to be perfect for about 200 jobs. I quickly learned that the only person I was kidding was me. I also learned that although there are some extremely poor recruitment agents out there, there are also a number of outstanding ones. Not only did I quickly focus on finding and dealing with those ones, I also resolved to maintain links with them; to help them find candidates for other positions and to help them understand the org charts at their clients. The result is that despite taking numerous risks in moving to other start-ups or career breaks, when I have found myself out of work, I have found that these people return my calls. They cannot find me a job that does not exist, but if a job does come up for which I am suited, you can bet your life I’ll be on their shortlist.

When I decided to go freelance about three years ago I found that my network of headhunters (most firms do both perm and interim these days) was invaluable. As a freelancer I am never more than 90 days away from “looking for a job”, but conversely in the last three years I have billed in excess of 600 days at market rates. Accounting for holidays, that’s a utilisation rate of about 95%.

Many people get a chip on their shoulder about poor agents and this comes across when they interview. Imagine how a good headhunter feels to be bracketed with the poor agents? Is it surprising that they start to sieve out the “whingers”?

I stand by and repeat my advice. Be harsh in your assessment of poor recruiters and avoid investing your time in them. But do not tar all headhunters with the same brush – only you will lose out. If my flippant use of an analogy to make this point has offended your heightened senses, I do apologise. That said life is too short to express all ones thoughts in boring, grey language for fear of offending those with thin-skin.

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#11 RE: Are there actually any jobs out there?
03/02/2010 11:08

live by the word to Mr Cool (#10)

Hey Mr Cool, could you share the name of some of those 'good agents' ? I haven't found any in the last 4 months, I really need some honest feedback on what is happening with my applications and on my experience once a client rejects an agent prospect they never come back to you and say what happened.

And I guess, Tony has a conflict of interest and therefore his opinion cannot be considered as unbiased.

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#12 RE: Are there actually any jobs out there?
03/02/2010 12:17

Mr Cool to live by the word (#11)

Hi “live by the word”

I would be delighted to, however a good agent for me will not necessarily be one for everyone. Just as I suggest candidates focus on the 2 to 3 areas where they are genuine contenders (and not apply where they know they are only a 50% match), a good agent is one that makes most of their placements in two or three niches. That’s how they get to understand their clients/niches and offer more than a CV service. I have also found that there are some good firms, but generally it is the individual headhunter that makes the difference.

If you are happy to provide more details of your background, I will come back to in 48 hours with some suggestions from my network for which firms/individuals you might consider targeting. That is a promise.

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#13 RE: Are there actually any jobs out there?
03/02/2010 12:41

Forum Fan to Mr Cool (#12)

Also looking - would you address a client in this way? I doubt it very much so why do you think your aggressive and rude post is acceptable on here? Regardless of the tone and language used by others surely we, as professionals, are able to respond in a way that gets over our point but does not impact negativley what this forum is about.

Mr Cool's offer of help and explanation of what he meant is exactly what this forum is about for me.

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#14 RE: Are there actually any jobs out there?
03/02/2010 15:44

Craig to Bharat (#1)

Well there certainly are jobs out there. However people may need to be realistic about the market and be ready to adapt. Firstly, you are going to need to be positive about taking a pay cut. It' a buyer's market and they know it. Job wages are heading down, and I don't see them beginning to rise for the next 12 months. Secondly, people are going to have to realize that they are likely going to have to take a perm role rather than a consultant or contract role.

There are a lot more perm roles out there right now than there are temp. It's just a fact, and let's be honest having a recent job on your CV (even at a much lower wage than normal) is a lot better than 12 months of unemployment whilst still holding out for a good contract!

You've also got to take another look at your CV. It needs to be up-to-date and it need to be tailored to the market TODAY, not 24 month ago. Find out what employers are looking for now, and tailor your CV to that.

Another thing that is needed is to update skills. I bought a Sun E420R (4xCPU, 4GB) and A1000 (12 x 9.6GB HDDs) RAID array from eBay for £1.98! Yep!! £1.98! A piece of kit that can still run any form of currect technology and used to cost thousands of pounds for peanuts! I use it for all sorts of updating of my skills. I've learned MySQL, PHP, ZFS, Solaris 10 (Zones and containers) and lots of other stuff. I run Solaris 10 on it, and many other OSes including VMS and OS/400!

I'm also doing an ITIL foundation course and have bought lots of CBTs from eBay also.

All this keeps me busy, keeps my spirits up (because I'm using my skills daily) and puts me in a great position at interview as I can discuss things I've never done as a job, but now know well because of having done it on my home kit.

Keep your chins up guys! Change your expectations and update your skills! The breaks are out there and one is heading your way!

All the best! :)

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#15 RE: Are there actually any jobs out there?
03/02/2010 21:08

Bharat to Craig (#14)

Thanks for the suggestion, I have not looked on ebay for CBT courses, though i did do my Lean Six Sigma last year. Financial burdens, and dependants mean I am wary on doing too many training courses as I am now tightening the purse strings.

Mr Cool, there probably are some good agencies out there, though I feel that I have probably registered with every agency going (big and small). My skill sets are around Business Architecture and change management. if you knwo of any good agencies you could point my way I would appreciate it.

Has anyone used the services of PCS Executive, I am seeing them onf Friday for a review of my CV and would like to knwo if you have had any experience with them.

The other thing I have found are the number of vacancies posted in the financial sector, but how do you actually get the experience to get the job? I have been told I fit the criteria and have all the requirements except the experience and because of this my credentials will not be looked at by the clients.

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#16 RE: Are there actually any jobs out there?
05/02/2010 12:30

Mr Cool to Bharat (#15)

Hi Bharat,

Business Architecture appears to enjoy its greatest support amongst large “IT” consultancies that have a desire to expand their engagement into the business functions of their clients - IBM, BT, CSC, CapGemini, CA, Oracle, etc.

Unfortunately for you, online recruitment statistics show that seven of the top ten industries that advertise for “business architect” skills in job ads are in fact sub-sectors of Financial Services – Retail Banking, Investment Banking, Pensions, Asset Mgmt, Insurance, etc.

In the short term I suggest you track down agencies that habitually deal with the large IT firms named above (and similar). A little bit of intelligent web research should achieve this. I have even done this first one to get you going. IBM for example has a Preferred Supplier List of recruitment agencies, which is in turn managed by a third party recruitment service company called Hy-phen. You can contact them directly on and ask them if they can recommend the appropriate agency that deals with Business Architecture and/or CM jobs within IBM.

In the medium term you may wish to think about taking a sideways or downward move in order to get some FS experience – it may pay off in the long term.

Best of luck.

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