Helping the job candidate to convey their ‘best self’: AAT’s Andrew Roberts-Morris in conversation

Anthony Haynes writes: FJWilson Talent Services (FJWTS) have worked with the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) since 2012, initially focusing on a number of new, regional and field-based business development roles.  Here we publish the latest in the resultant series of case studies.

Anthony Haynes writes: Andy Roberts-Morris is AAT’s Regional Account Manager, Yorkshire & the Humber. He was recruited by FJWilson Talent Services for his current position in 2013. Here Andy shares how FJWTS helped him prepare for the selection process in such a way that his interviewers could make a good assessment of his potential.

In Andy’s words:

How my move to AAT came about

I’d been working in the training, education and workforce development sector for 15 years, the last five years of which were at SkillsActive UK, as a business development manager. SkillsActive UK was about to change and, whilst I was going to be offered a new post, I was keeping my eye on the job market – within the same sector, about which I’m passionate.

 Experience of FJWTS

Fiona Wilson’s call came out of the blue in May 2013; their researcher had found my profile (possibly on LinkedIn). In our first conversation Fiona found out more about my experience, how I liked to be managed, and what I felt I contribute to a team.

In our second, Fiona gave more information about the role she was hoping to fill, and told me that the employer was AAT.

My CV was submitted to AAT after this conversation and I was then invited to a first interview in London. I was very interested in the post as it was working for a national awarding body.

I was then introduced to Dilly Clack, Candidate Manager, who, along with Fiona, prepared me for my first interview. The preparation in the run-up to the interview was great. Up to this point I hadn’t come across a company which helps candidates to such a level. The upshot of this was that I wasn’t nervous and Fiona and Dilly gave me the confidence ‘just to be yourself’ at the interview.

I was interviewed by Martin Hanratty, National Account Manager, and a representative from AAT’s human resources department. I was told quite quickly that I’d got through to the second interview. FJWTS also gave me feedback from my first interview.

I had a lot of contact with FJWTS in between the interviews. I took some tests online which assessed my characteristics and suitability to the role on offer.

Again, FJWTS prepared me for the second interview, telling me what AAT wanted from the successful candidate. It was a very good, detailed brief. As a consequence, I went into the interview quite confident – but going in as myself.

The second interview was with Martin Hanratty and Rob Alder, then Business Development Manager. I felt it went well and was glad I’d heeded FJWTS’s advice of making my presentation focussed rather than rambling on with too much detail! I felt I couldn’t have done any more, and, happily, I was right as I received a phone call on the train home to say I’d been successful.

Final thoughts

It was a great, successful outcome – a great role working for a great company.

FJWTS manages the triangular relationship – of employer, candidate and FJWTS – very professionally; they got this spot-on. FJWTS has a good relationship with AAT and a firm understanding of its business, culture and what AAT is looking for in its employees in terms of character and behaviour.

I got the impression that FJWTS don’t want to rush the process. They’d rather say no to a candidate than put a wrong one forward. Their attention to detail sets them apart.

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