ND Recruitment Services https://www.new-directions.co.uk Education, Social Care, Care & Support and Pharmacy Recruitment & Training Wed, 11 Sep 2019 08:09:55 +0000 en-US hourly 1 161681595 Women in Business: Q&A with Victoria Deane https://www.new-directions.co.uk/blog/2019/09/women-in-business-qa-with-victoria-deane/ https://www.new-directions.co.uk/blog/2019/09/women-in-business-qa-with-victoria-deane/#respond Mon, 09 Sep 2019 13:05:40 +0000 https://www.new-directions.co.uk/?p=5816 Women in Business - Victoria Deane

To kick off our Women in Business blog series, meet Victoria Deane, Director of Support Services and member of the Group Senior Leadership Team (GSLT), who has worked at New Directions for nearly 11 years.

What does a typical day in your role look like?

It is usually very well planned initially. I regularly attend meetings, but I have quite a few informal catchups with colleagues which I really value, as this helps to pre-empt concerns or issues and get feedback on the Support Services that I’m responsible for. 

I lead on the development and delivery of activities and operations of various support departments – IT, Operations, Marketing, and Quality and Compliance. My priority is always my Support Service teams and GSLT colleagues and I’m happy to support them in any way. My teams know that my success is solely down to their performance, so it makes sense that I’m on hand.

My teams are technical specialists, so I’m not heavy-handed in my approach. I trust their ability, management and decision making. They always keep me updated so I can ensure my senior colleagues are kept abreast of any pertinent information. This is also two way and I find a lot of my time is spent ensuring I keep my teams updated on everything too. In fact, I’m told by my peers that I’m too transparent! I’d rather this than the opposite.

In summary, I don’t have a typical day. Every day is different and this works for me – I relish it. I’d go so far as to say I feel challenged, stimulated and enthused by my role every day.

What do you enjoy most about your role?

There are many things I enjoy about my role, including:

  • Getting good feedback
  • Delivering excellent results
  • Seeing my team win awards
  • Spending time with and helping people
  • Co-hosting the annual Celebrating Success event.

I love the fact that every day in my role brings new challenges and opportunities. I feel incredibly lucky to work for a company that allows me to express myself and be me; personality matters!

What has been your biggest challenge?

Well, working with our Chairman is a challenge, but not the biggest… haha!

On a serious note, I’ve struggled with not being a specialist in my current role. Having previously been a Learning and Development specialist and HR professional, I’ve found that managing a team and not be able to do their jobs has been a real challenge. However, my teams have helped me realise this isn’t required. They’ve trained for years to be competent in their roles, and my job is to support them to ensure their efforts and deliverables align with the company’s strategic objectives and our Chairman’s vision.

Have there been any defining moments in your career that have contributed to your success?

In 2000, I went to the USA on a ‘Train the Trainer’ programme for three weeks. I’d finally found my vocation and have never looked back. I left Dallas as a different person to the one that arrived there; it was the maddest experience. I met incredible people; delivered a training session to a classroom full of people at 3 am (sleep-deprived); had to be videoed and assessed constantly; and couldn’t phone home (I think it was a boot camp!). The 3 weeks ended with a placement in Philadelphia, where I demonstrated all that I’d learnt. I passed with flying colours and returned home to then train people all over the UK and Europe in the 8 years that followed, and I loved every minute of it.

I still miss Learning and Development as I do HR, but I don’t have any regrets moving my career forward and learning new skills. I’ve learnt so much about myself in my current role. It’s been refreshing to be in an operational capacity and I now understand the different pressures compared to that of my time in Learning and Development and HR Manager roles. I am a more rounded individual for it.

What were your career aspirations when you started your working life?

I remember doing two work experience placements in school; one to be a Physiotherapist, the other a Police Officer. Honestly, I didn’t have a plan and still don’t – this is me to a tee. I love being in the moment and not planning too far ahead. 

I’m proud to say I’ve always worked since the age of 13 (after school and at weekends) and have loved it. Some of my friends and family joke that ‘I live to work’ and not the other way around! This isn’t true, but I’ve always been happy at work and have always made the best of it. Through University, I worked in the summer holidays in a post room licking envelopes (and cutting my lips and tongue – until they told me there was a sponge thingy that I should have been using instead!), I’ve filed by number and did everything possible to stay awake. I got my first job after University having given great service in an American Diner (working evenings and weekends as a student) to the Marketing Director of a 5-star hotel, who offered me a job on the spot. But as you now know, I found my home in Learning and Development, HR and Support Services – interestingly with a common theme; all working with people and providing a service.

How would you define a great leader?

A great leader is authentic, passionate, motivated, kind, honest and someone with professional integrity. They lead by example and are respected, likeable, self-aware, knowledgeable, and can influence and communicate well.

Who is your inspiration?

I am inspired by several people… I have a replica of Cinderella’s glass slipper in my office, reminding me of one of Cinderella’s life lessons:

To always have courage and be kind.

I also joke with a colleague and we say:

What would Michelle do?

That is Michelle Obama – I read her book recently and was inspired by it.

Audrey Hepburn has also always been my idol. As an actress and humanitarian, she was an inspiration – I love her style. She also had lots of famous quotes such as:

Nothing is impossible, the word itself says ‘I’m possible’!

This typifies my glass half full mentality.

How do you achieve a healthy work-life balance?

Work hard, play hard! I’m as passionate about home as I am work, and I really feel I have a good balance of both. I have amazing family and friends and love talking, reading, sleeping, shopping, movies and holidays. I think these activities keep me well balanced. I could do with being a little more active, so I’ve enrolled in an evening yoga class in September!

I love to recharge my batteries annually and I think holidays give you the space to think and reflect. I am lucky to spend time away regularly with a group of 30 or more friends. We ski, camp and go on holiday overseas every year. 

I’m naturally a happy person, which comes from being content and living in the moment – I think this is a good starting point!   

What drives and motivates you?

I’m really motivated by:

  • Teamwork and delivering results and excellent service through and with my team
  • Being recognised for doing a good job
  • Being valued and respected
  • Making a difference
  • Being happy
  • And having good, healthy, honest, relationships.

I’m also driven by developing myself and being the best I can be. I’ve wanted to be liked my whole working career and I am a ‘people pleaser’, but most recently, I have learnt that you can’t please everyone, so to be respected is now my driver.

What advice would you give to women who aspire to be in leadership/management roles?

Be yourself and don’t hold back. Go for it – ‘have courage and be kind!’

To lead, you’ve got to like people, be interested and passionate, enjoy what you do, study, work hard and be tenacious. Always be honest, choose your battles wisely and don’t reply to an email that’s upset you until the next day, then sense check your response with a trusted colleague first. Even better, talk about it or telephone the person instead. Invest in relationships and never take advantage of anyone. Always be able to ask for a favour and always return one.

Have fun. Don’t take work too seriously and never be afraid to make mistakes – just learn from them. I feel very fortunate to be one of the four women in the Senior Leadership Team here at New Directions since April 2019. The previous Senior Management Team was male-dominated and I want everyone to know that gender isn’t relevant in a leadership and management role. In fact, personality, talent, and the leadership traits I’ve mentioned, blended with your accomplishments, accountabilities and deliverables, are far more important and will determine your success.

What is the most important thing you’ve learnt in your career journey so far?

To have integrity – ‘doing the right thing even when no one is watching’. C. S Lewis. 

Integrity has always been my favourite value. I also believe that passion, professionalism and the way I conduct myself daily have been the catalyst and foundation for all my promotions, especially here at New Directions.

What achievements are you most proud of?

I’m proud of gaining a 2:1 at University; winning Colleague of the Year Awards at Rocco Forte Hotels (UK and Europe); being chosen as one of the Welsh trainers for the Ambassadors to host London 2012 Olympics; earning the Manager of the Year title twice at New Directions (2015 and 2017); and achieving Investors in People Gold and ‘Best Recruitment Company to Work for’ in 2016 whilst HR Manager.

I also have to say that being promoted to a Directorship, albeit leaving a profession I loved, I now realise was worth it, as that role has led me to the GSLT (which was not planned or expected and is still over-whelming) but goodness me, what an opportunity. Watch this space – I have so much more to give!

We hope Vicky’s story inspires you as much as us. Tune in soon to read our next Women in Business blog…

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Wellbeing for migraines and headaches https://www.new-directions.co.uk/blog/2019/08/wellbeing-for-migraines-and-headaches/ Tue, 06 Aug 2019 10:16:18 +0000 https://www.new-directions.co.uk/?p=5764 Migraines and headaches can greatly impact our general wellbeing and happiness. Therefore, to support a healthier workplace and workforce, our HR team have pulled together a number of practical ways to help reduce migraines and headaches and to help keep you fit, healthy and happy at work.

Top tips for reducing headaches and migraines


Acupressure therapy may help to relieve some migraine symptoms. Acupressure involves the application of pressure to specific parts of the body. Stimulating specific points of the body in this way is believed to release muscle tension and alleviate pain, which can reduce headaches and migraines.

Diet changes

Many people who suffer from migraines notice that certain foods can trigger them. Common food triggers for migraines include:

  • processed foods
  • red wine
  • alcohol
  • chocolate
  • caffeinated beverages.

Being aware of what might be triggering a migraine is critical. Some people use a food diary or migraine journal to keep track of potential triggers. Changing your diet or eating patterns to avoid triggers may help to prevent migraines in the future.

Stress management

Stress is a common trigger for migraines. It can also create a cycle where migraine pain worsens the stress, which then triggers another migraine.

Finding outlets for stress, such as journaling, exercise or meditation, may help to prevent future migraines. You can also try taking a stress management class, choose to take a warm bath or listen to music to try to relieve the stress you feel. By doing these positive actions, a person is choosing to take control of their body’s reaction to the stress in their life, reducing the risk of headaches and migraines.

Yoga or stretching

Yoga is thought to help improve blood flow and reduce muscle tension, which can help relieve symptoms for people who suffer from migraines. It is known to be a great activity for reducing stress too, which we know is a trigger for migraines. All the more reason to sign up to our next in-house yoga session!


Massaging the muscles in the neck and shoulders can help to relieve tension and alleviate migraine pain. Massage may also help to reduce any stress that you are feeling.

You can choose to use a professional masseuse for a massage (and a nice treat!), or alternatively, you can take a tennis ball and use it to do a self-massage along the shoulders and back. This is a more cost-effective option.

Stay hydrated

Not drinking enough water is a well-known migraine and headache trigger. In fact, it only takes minor dehydration to bring on a headache and this is easily avoided.

Drinking water throughout the day and maintaining a healthy diet is usually enough to stay sufficiently hydrated. If you suffer from headaches and migraines, you can try to drink more water each day to avoid dehydration. People with severe dehydration may initially need an oral rehydration solution to replace missing electrolytes, but it is best to avoid this by drinking plenty of water throughout the day. Please use your wellness water bottle to stay hydrated.


Lack of sleep and too much sleep can both be triggers for migraine headaches. Maintaining a healthy sleep pattern and getting around 7–9 hours of restful sleep each night can help to reduce stress and prevent migraines.


Some people find that placing a cold or warm compress on their head can be soothing and help to reduce migraine pain.

Many people who suffer from migraines report a preference for a cold compress, but warm or cold compresses can both work and it is down to personal preference – you can try both options to find out which works best for you.

In-house support available at New Directions

Don’t forget to contact your HR team for in-house support if you are suffering from headaches and migraines. At New Directions, we offer a Stress Management course for employees and you can also use your Employee Health Shield plan for massages too. Please don’t forget to also use your wellness water bottle to keep you hydrated throughout the day!

We can help you in many ways, so get in touch if you need our support or advice for headaches and migraines!

Put your back into it! https://www.new-directions.co.uk/blog/2019/07/put-your-back-into-it/ Thu, 18 Jul 2019 15:00:53 +0000 https://www.new-directions.co.uk/?p=5803 Over recent weeks we have seen an increase in absence linked to back pain. In order to support a healthier workplace and workforce, we have written top 10 tips for a healthy back, including lifting advice, how to sit properly and back-strengthening exercises.

  • Exercise your back regularly – walking, swimming (including front and back strokes) and using exercise bikes are all excellent ways to strengthen your back muscles.
  • Always bend your knees and hips, not your back.
  • Learn to lift heavy objects using the correct lifting technique.
  • Carry larger loads in a comfortable rucksack using both shoulder straps, and avoid sling bags.
  • Maintain a good posture – avoid slumping in your chair, hunching over a desk, or walking with your shoulders hunched.
  • Try to take a short break from sitting every 30 minutes.
  • Stop smoking – it’s thought smoking reduces the blood supply to the discs between the vertebrae, and this may lead to these discs degenerating.
  • Lose any excess weight, by making better choices with daily diet. Increase daily intake of green vegetables, fish, berries, healthy fats i.e. avocado and nuts.
  • Check that your bed provides the correct support and comfort for your weight and build, not just firmness.
  • Learn relaxation techniques such as breathing exercises to help manage stress. Stress is a major cause of back pain.

DSE assessments are available via the Groups Operations department if you require a review of your chair/foot rest etc.

“Happy spine, happy time” 😊

Helping employees to get the most out of their careers https://www.new-directions.co.uk/blog/2018/07/helping-employees-to-get-the-most-out-of-their-careers/ Mon, 23 Jul 2018 09:00:23 +0000 https://www.new-directions.co.uk/?p=3578 At New Directions we pride ourselves on helping our staff strive for professional development throughout their careers with us. Whether it’s an internship, contract or full-time employment. We ensure we support our employee’s as they continue to grow.

Rhiannon Newell photograph

One such employee is; Rhiannon Newell, who is interning with our HR department for 10 weeks whilst she studies in her second year at the University of South Wales to gain a BA (Hons) in Human Resources Management.

She says of her experience:

At New Directions, I’ve gained a fascinating insight into the world of human resources (HR). I’ve been exposed to the challenges it faces and the work that’s being done to overcome issues. The internship has motivated me to do the best I can when applying my knowledge to the workplace. It’s taught me to put more thought and detail into the tasks I undertake and it’s also developed my confidence in the workplace. Within my role I learnt how important it is to be professional and to demonstrate as much understanding of a subject as possible.

What I enjoyed most about my placement was being part a fantastic team. They were very positive, supportive, accommodating and more importantly, made me feel like I was a valued member of staff. HR at New Directions are driving forward a great vision for the company. The projects I’ve worked on will help contribute to this.

We wish Rhiannon the best of luck during her studies and her continued success throughout her career.

Read the article in full with the University of South Wales.

New Directions Out in Numbers at Finance Awards Wales https://www.new-directions.co.uk/blog/2018/04/new-directions-out-in-numbers-at-finance-awards-wales/ Mon, 23 Apr 2018 15:47:41 +0000 https://www.new-directions.co.uk/?p=3480 On Friday April 20th, 2018 our accounts team attended the annual Finance Wales Awards where one of our staff was shortlisted for Accounts Assistant of the Year.

Kath Redwood who has worked for New Directions for 15 years was shortlisted alongside three other industry professionals from the following organisations – Inspiresport, Magnet and Steel and Tiger Cardiff Ltd (Flying Tiger Copenhagen).

Amy Jones, Financial Controller said of the event

Our team thoroughly enjoyed being part of celebrating finance excellence on Friday night at City Hall in Cardiff. Although Kath did not win her category this time – we were delighted that she was shortlisted and held up as a beacon of best practice within our field.

Finance Awards Wales is designed to recognise, attract and invest in the talented finance professionals working in Wales.

With principal partners Recruit 121 Finance & Accounting, the awards will showcase the best in Finance talent. From the experienced finance directors and CFOs who are at the forefront of finance leadership, to unsung heroes leading expert transactional accounting, and importantly to the next generation of apprentices and graduates, the awards will put Welsh financial professionals on the map.

The Finance Awards Wales had the following award categories in 2018:

  • Chief Financial Officer/Finance Director of the Year
  • Young Finance Director of the Year
  • Financial Controller of the Year
  • Accountant of the Year
  • Assistant Accountant of the Year
  • Finance Team (Financial Services) of the Year
  • Credit Team of the Year
  • Rising Star of the Year
  • Small Finance Team of the Year (up to 10 staff within team)
  • Medium/Large Finance Team (more than 11 staff)
  • Outstanding Contribution to Finance in Wales

The New Directions team turned out in numbers on Friday night to support Kath. Anna Parsons, Financial Accountant for the organisation said of the event ‘it was a wonderful evening to celebrate with Kath and the team. Many of our unsung heroes work in effectively what is the back office. To be able to be alongside other professionals in Wales who deliver outstanding work was a real pleasure’.

Matt’s Marathon Challenge https://www.new-directions.co.uk/blog/2018/04/matts-marathon-challenge/ Mon, 09 Apr 2018 14:40:47 +0000 https://www.new-directions.co.uk/?p=3430 One of our very own Cardiff Education Team Account Manager’s, Matthew James, recently completed the Sheffield half marathon, beating his personal best with an impressive time of 1hour 28 minutes and 21 seconds in aid of the TomMaynard Trust.

Originally Matt planned to run the Newport half marathon on 4th or 18th March but both dates were cancelled due the freak snow blizzard that ravaged the UK throughout last month. Subsequently Matt made the 4 hour journey to Sheffield last Saturday to run (7th April) Sheffield’s Half marathon instead.

Matt has been in training since December and also decided to make the (some would say courageous) decision to give up alcohol for four months to help him keep in peak physical condition and beat his personal best of 1 hour 29minutes and 29 seconds.

Along with giving up alcohol Matt enlisted the help of his 8 year old son, Alfie, whom he had asked to get him a running calendar for his Christmas present. But, rather than buying his dad one Alfie decided to make it and set Matt’s tough training regime until the end of April. Alfie did try and ease some of the training pressures and to keep his dad motivated scheduled in spot prizes along the way.

Matt comments; “Safe to say it was the toughest course I have run to date with lots of hills to tackle throughout the course. I finished the event with a time of 1 hour 28 minutes and 21 seconds. I have currently raised £402 so would like to say a big thank you to all who have sponsored me so far.”

Matt’s chosen charity, The Tom Maynard Trust was set up initially to help the development of aspiring disadvantaged cricketers and other sportspeople who require support with different aspects of their career development, including bursaries, help with training and education, financial support for overseas placements and assistance with kit and equipment. Its work now includes support for education and development programmes across a number of professional sports and the running of an annual Tom Maynard Academy in Spain.

“I decided to choose this charity as I grew up with Tom through Primary school and Comp playing in many different sporting teams with him. Tom went on to play Cricket for Glamorgan and Surrey. Tom was involved in an accident in London back in 2013 which he did not recover from.” Says Matt

Matt will also be running the Newport Marathon on 29th April which is a 26.2 mile route past iconic landmarks, coastal wildlife, picturesque medieval villages and after completing this he can finally celebrate with a pint or two…

If you would like to help raise money for this worthwhile cause, please click here to sponsor Matt.

Kicking off the Award season with a bang… https://www.new-directions.co.uk/blog/2018/03/kicking-off-the-award-season-with-a-bang/ Wed, 28 Mar 2018 14:44:39 +0000 https://www.new-directions.co.uk/?p=3403 New Directions were overjoyed with their recent win at the Cardiff Life Awards 2018, taking home the award for ‘Professional Services Company of the Year’.  After being shortlisted three times in 2016, ’17 and now ’18, New Directions proved that the third time really is a charm.

This award is a testament to our success and determination to provide invaluable recruitment and training services in the education sector throughout Wales. We are dedicated to supplying schools and our staff with the best possible support and training opportunities.

Gary Williams, New Directions Director of Business Development commented: “New Directions is doing so much for Wales. It is supportive and highly successful in providing employees who have an added value for businesses.”

New Directions also scooped the ‘Best HR Professional – Financial Professional Services’ award for HR Advisor, Catherine Day at the Wales HR Awards 2018 for the second consecutive year in a row with Sophie Cecil winning the award in 2017. We also just missed out on the ‘Employer of the year’ award after being shortlisted.

The HR awards are to acknowledge and celebrate excellence, something we are very passionate about here at New Directions. Sophie Cecil, Group HR Director, says: “our people are our greatest asset. Our success is a direct result of the skill and quality of our people. Through different initiatives and training opportunities we do all that we can to recognise and praise achievements in the business”.

This is a fantastic start to the year for New Directions; we hope to continue our success in the future.

Women in Business in Transition – It’s time for change! https://www.new-directions.co.uk/blog/2018/03/women-in-business-in-transition-its-time-for-change/ Thu, 08 Mar 2018 13:00:11 +0000 https://www.new-directions.co.uk/?p=3366 As you are all no doubt aware International Women’s Day is a time to reflect, call for change and celebrate acts of courage and determination by women. Now, it does officially say it’s for women who have played an extraordinary role in the history of their countries and communities, but I believe it is a day of celebration for all women, because some women go unrecognised for their everyday acts of courage and contributions.

So, with my thoughts about courage and recognition I believe it important we continue in our quest to gain a better understanding of the impact of the perimenopause and menopause on women in the workplace.

Over the last few months I have been a prolific networker and have been out and about attending seminars and workshops to enable me to stay at the top of my game, sense check my professional knowledge and ensure we have the best working practices for New Directions Group of Companies. Whilst out and about, I have had the privilege of talking to many professional females and, we happened to touch on the subject of the menopause and I have to say, I have been quite shocked to hear some of their stories.

Yes, it remains firmly a rather taboo subject, with very little change in attitude since the government reported on it back in 2015 (Dr Ros Altmann CBE) and the more recent University of Leicester Report for the Department of Education in 2017. These two reports draw attention to the subject again, but there is little evidence to suggest UK workplaces have made positive changes in support of it’s ever growing female workforce through their transition.

Here is a snap shot of the experiences had by colleagues, friends and family: women have been given lesser projects because their behaviour has changed and they lack concentration and their once second to none organisational skills have all but disappeared, daily struggles with deadlines, in one extreme case someone was performance managed out of their role, others voluntary left their positions because of lack of support and understanding by their managers, others continue to fear their bosses reaction should they dare to broach the subject, they remain isolated and cannot talk about the way they are feeling because it may be misunderstood, some lost their confidence and doubted their abilities which resulted in them taking on lesser roles with reduced hours and pay.

Another finding that also concerned me was the lack of knowledge of the perimenopause by GPs – basically if you didn’t know already, this is the hidden gem that can strike up to 10 years before the menopause starts! Great!! Oh, don’t you just love being a women, mother nature blesses us with periods, pregnancy, perimenopause and then full blown menopause!

UK businesses need to wake up and realise that we can expect up to 47%[1] of the UK workforce – i.e., all female workers – will experience menopause transition during their working lives.
I am writing this to encourage UK businesses to at least recognise that the transition for women through the menopause is not straight-forward and if you want to ensure you retain these talented women, you need to put support in place.

New Directions, have a predominately female workforce, with many of our females at management level, so we really are not taking this for granted and have already started providing support to make sure we retain these talented, strong, passionate women through the early stages (perimenopause) and latter stages of the menopause. We are determined not to lose these inspiring females of the future.

We are talking Wellbeing at work, recognising the signs, having a focused Wellbeing Champion as part of a comprehensive Wellbeing Strategy, supporting these women, give advice, talk about the taboo subject and put support measures in place. It can be tough dealing with irrational thoughts, emotional outbursts, insomnia, weight gain, forgetfulness, lack of concentration, self-doubt, these are just a few symptoms through the transition stage. Therefore, it is important to provide support, guidance and open dialogue, we must not write these women off, nor performance manage them, apply extra pressure, and allow negative comments from colleagues, this must stop! Women need to be able to talk about this without bias and fear for their positions, status etc.
Of course, we do respect that some women don’t want to be treated differently to men and potentially like to deal with the transition privately. If this is the case, go for it, we admire their strength, but should they need support, at least it will be available.

So, some tips to support are relatively simple, make sure someone is available to talk about the menopause, sometimes listening is all that is required, flexibility for medical appointments, sometimes it takes a while to diagnose a hormone imbalance or the menopause, provide literature about the menopause and sign post them in the right direction for answers, allow flexibility on work dress, flexible working hours, provide well ventilated areas to work if possible, allow regular breaks in meetings if you spot a colleague becoming too warm and uncomfortable, training for managers to spot the signs of changes in behaviour and the confidence to hold discussions about the menopause.

Interestingly, women are working in greater numbers than ever before. In the UK, between January and March 2017, just over 70% of women were in paid employment (Office for National Statistics/ ONS 2017). Women make up 47% of the UK workforce (Griffiths, Cox, Griffiths and Wong 2006; Kopenhager and Guidozzi 2015). If UK businesses don’t start to recognise this and support women, then they will lose some seriously talented professionals with high emotional intelligence and excellent business acumen. The perfect ingredients required around the top table, but research on the impact on women leaving before reaching those dizzy heights is yet to be produced!

On balance then, we can expect that up to 47% of the UK workforce – i.e. all female workers – will experience menopause transition during their working lives.

It’s time for the business community to #pressforprogress on this unspoken development within the female life cycle.

New Directions supporting the Mr X Appeal https://www.new-directions.co.uk/blog/2017/12/mr-x-appeal-drives-charitable-ambitions-2/ Wed, 06 Dec 2017 15:01:47 +0000 https://www.new-directions.co.uk/?p=3261 New Directions have been involved in the Mr X Appeal for a number of years. The Mr X appeal is a Swansea based charity asks businesses, individuals and groups of people to offer a Christmas present donation for young people living in poverty or care.

The appeal has grown into a tradition at New Directions and has grown considerably over the last few years. In 2014 we donated around 100 gifts; this has now tripled with nearly 300 gifts donated.

New Directions Pharmacy employee, Andrew Harris has helped contribute to the success of this appeal by getting 126 members involved from outside New Directions.

Mark Lloyd, Owner of Brawd Men’s Health (www.brawdhealth.com)  and Ms Fitwomen’s Health  (www.msfithealth.com) comments,

“On behalf of the members a big thank you to Andrew for managing this Mr X Appeal for us. Andrew is a popular member and 126 members bought presents to contribute to the appeal. We are blown away by the generosity of people. This is the second year we’ve got involved in this appeal with New Directions and it’s growing every year.”

We even had to call in help from our supplier, CBOF. The business support our venture every year and without their generous loan of a van and accompanying muscle we would have a fleet of a 100 cars travelling down the M4.

The team delivered all the presents from Santa on Friday 1st December.


Click to view slideshow.


Welsh Business in Awards Shortlisting https://www.new-directions.co.uk/blog/2017/10/welsh-business-awards-shortlisting/ Mon, 09 Oct 2017 14:45:06 +0000 https://www.new-directions.co.uk/?p=3178 A leading Welsh recruitment and training organisation has been shortlisted for their eighth award nomination of 2017.

New Directions have been announced as finalists in the 2017 CIPD Wales Awards. This heralds a third successive shortlisting for the HR Team as ‘In House Team of the Year’.

Sophie Cecil, Group HR Director – who was named ‘Best HR Professional in the financial / professional service sector’ at this year’s inaugural Welsh HR Awards said of the shortlisting – ‘we are overwhelmed yet again to be shortlisted for such a prestigious set of awards. This is all credit to the operational staff in the office who work to support over 180 employees across our business. We have only been in existence as a department for little over six years, the journey we have embarked upon has been an interesting one. We are so very proud of all that New Directions offers to their community, and we look forward to celebrating this success with our peers across the sector in October’.

New Directions was founded in 1993, initially the organisation had existed as a recruitment partner to the creative industries in London – PR, communications and design.

Today the business looks very different. The mainstay of their business is within the provision of staff to the education sector across Wales as the ‘managed service provider’ appointed by the National Procurement Service. However, the business also has strong operations in the care, pharmaceutical and commercial sectors, as well as a training division.

Jeff Tune, CEO for New Directions added to Sophie’s comments ‘in recent years our organisation has gone from strength-to-strength. We have a strong reputation as an excellent service provider – and this is reflected with a serious number of awards and accolades won. From our Compliance Team being named Team of the Year to our entire organisation being celebrated as ‘Employer of the Year’ at our industry awards in December last year. The CIPD shortlisting is testament to the strides in progress Sophie and her team have made for the business over the past few years’.

In 2016 New Directions was awarded Investors in People (IiP) Gold status – the first recruitment agency in Wales to receive this status.