Top 10 Creative Regions

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With the presence of BBC and ITV it’s not surprising that Manchester tops the list in the ‘Creative Regions’ report recently published by CBRE. However, Birmingham is growing faster than Manchester, specifically in the information and communications sectors and within the millennial group (20-34 year olds).

A suggestion that Channel 4 may be making a move to Birmingham, and talks of a proposed film studio has seen the city grow in the creative industries, and with more than triple the amount of SMEs than Manchester it is set to close the gap further.

Below are the top ten town & city creative talent markets, according to the report:

1. Manchester 2. Reading 3. Edinburgh 4. Cambridge 5. Glasgow 6. Oxford 7. Birmingham 8. Bristol 9. Brighton 10. Leeds

If you’re a top ten ‘creative region’ …

The Power of Events

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Whether it’s an internal employee dinner or a large scale exhibition, events have become a key aspect of marketing to many companies. Companies who do not run or attend events and exhibitions could be missing a trick and falling behind in this ever changing market.

Some companies may not see the value in events or see it as a cost that they could do without, a cost they have not set budget for and money better spent elsewhere, however there are many reasons why events and exhibitions can have a far greater return for the company.

Events don’t have to be huge scale corporate affairs that take months and months of planning and preparation at great expense. It could be as simple as an employee …

Making the Leap to Freelance

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At some point in your career you may have considered making the leap to freelancing, perhaps the thought of being your own boss, working with multiple clients and meeting new people and being paid handsomely for your time are all appealing. However, there is always the worry that you won’t find enough work.

At Blue Skies, we have a four strong freelance team and with our collective years working within freelance, we’ve listed some points to consider before making the leap…

THE MOTIVATION TO FREELANCE

Is it to earn more money, work on different types of work, meet more people etc?  Then figure out whether there a buoyant market for your line of work in your area.  Speak to freelancers working in your business, colleagues …

Is Your Price Right?

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The current market is an interesting one and not without its challenges, its candidate driven, more so than ever. Good candidates with in demand skill sets are in demand across our markets and they have plenty of choice; it’s not unusual for a good candidate to be exploring three or more opportunities at any one time. This inevitably means some clients will lose out on a potentially great hire, which is fine if the candidate failed to convince or inspire at interview, but we strongly advise that if you see a candidate that impresses enough for you to offer them a job, that the initial offer made reflects both their experience and the salary expectations set out at the beginning of the process.

At Blue …

Do You Have Transferable Skills?

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Have you ever found the perfect job only to read through the job description and realise that there are some areas that you appear to be lacking in? What do you do in this situation… click the back button and move on to the next opportunity hoping that it will mirror your experience perfectly? Or do you carefully consider the skills being requested and link them to a skill that you already have?

Many candidates fall into the first category and consider themselves not suitable for a given role, but should companies and candidates alike be focusing on what we call ‘transferable skills’.

Transferable skills are those key skills that you have developed over time that you can take with you, be it in general …

What Candidates Want

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As a recruiter in todays hugely candidate driven market, I frequently find myself in a position whereby my candidates ask for my advice on which companies they should take the time to interview with, which of the offers they receive they should accept and what they should do about the counter offer they receive upon handing in their notice to their current employer.

On the flip side, my clients frequently ask me why the best candidates are so difficult to find, even more difficult to pin down for an interview and why, even when a generous offer is on the table, the top candidates can still remain so difficult to secure. Ultimately, the reason both my clients and candidates are in this situation is a …

The Growth of Digital

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2016 proved to be the year for digital, with many companies realising the potential that is available to them in terms of reaching a much wider audience through digital channels.  Where there has always been a need for a Digital Manager within a business who possess broad digital skills, what we are seeing more and more are the requirements for specialists in each channel.

One of the greatest increases has been for candidates with SEM experience and also separately; social media expertise.  With social media being a relatively new channel of marketing for organisations, finding candidates who have the level of knowledge in this area is challenging.  Given the candidate-scarce market we are in, this makes recruiting for these roles all the more tricky.  Content …

Creative Pool Annual Awards 2017 Nominee

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We are proud to have been shortlisted for the Creativepool Annual & Awards 2017 in the Best Recruiter category.

Creativepool has officially announced the shortlist nominees; this brings the start of the People’s Choice voting for the 2017 Annual and Awards, with support from jones knowles ritchie, Saddington Baynes, and Made in Global.

The excitement growing around this year’s Annual Shortlist is a reflection not only of the global creative talent found on Creativepool, but in the creative industries as a whole, particularly in a time when creativity is needed more than ever before. The People’s Choice competition also offers a unique angle to the competition by providing the whole creative community the chance to let their voices and their opinions be heard – allowing them to …

Raising Money | London Revolution

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The amazing Michelle will be cycling 185 miles around London to raise money for our charity of the year The Shakespeare Hospice and to help us reach our £6000 target.

The London Revolution is a 185 miles, two day event taking participants on a cycle ride around London. Not only do we wish her the best of luck but want to help her raise money. If you would like to donate to Michelle and help a very worthy charity, then click the donate button below.

“Blue Skies have chosen to support the Shakespeare Hospice in an effort to raise as much money as we possible can. For those of you who don’t know about the amazing work this charity do, they provide support of all kinds …

Did You Freelance for Free in 2016?

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Although the idea of working for free makes most freelancers fume it would seem that some still do, with recent research finding that during 2016 at least 9 per cent agreed to do just that.

It is predominantly the creative industry that is asked to work for free with Graphic Designers  near the top of that list with 85% of those surveyed being asked to use their skills for ‘exposure’ over the past five years.

% of creatives asked to work for free in 2016

Photographers 87% Graphic Designers 85% Illustrators 81% Front-End Developers 74% Back-End Developers 71%

Of those agreeing to work for free most stated that they made the decision based on the experience they would gain from that work, and the under-25s are …

Standing Out from the Crowd

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If like many people coming into the New Year you are dissatisfied with your current role, applying for a new role can be daunting, time consuming and even traumatic.

It’s hard to know how to appeal over every other candidate who is also applying for their dream job. A Brand Republic survey in 2016 states that more than half (58%) of jobseekers in the creative, marketing and advertising sectors find it hard to stand out in the application process. Here at Blue Skies we are always looking at ways into what gives successful candidates a competitive edge so you stand out from the crowd.

LinkedIn have recently analysed millions of LinkedIn profiles, more than 21 million in the UK alone, and have released some interesting research …

The Rise of Part-Time

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More companies are remodelling their employment structures, realising that there is an in-demand part-time and job share candidate market for the taking.

A recent study has found that highly paid part-time roles have increased over the past year by 5.7%, with more than 770,000 people now working in a part-time capacity. The Charity and Public Sector employers are leading the way with this change, with the hope that more Private Sector organisations will follow with more flexible structures.

Employers have come to realise the value that can be had from employing part-time or job share staff, especially if they are returning after a career break, with many employees having previously dedicated a number of years to a company prior to their break and return fully …

Speeding Up the Recruitment Process

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With unemployment said to have hit an 11 year low, employers are struggling to source the right candidates. Subsequently 46% of them have reduced the length of their hiring process as the market for good candidates becomes tighter.

A further 28% of employers have reduced the process because the time it took to hire was putting candidates off and a survey conducted by Totaljobs revealed that 92% of employers now make an offer within a week of the interview process, whilst 59% take less than two weeks from the role first being advertised to the first round of interviews.

So what can you do to help speed up the process of recruitment and ensure you don’t miss out on talent?

Skype Interview

10% of employers …

Keeping Your Team Motivated in 2017

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Twitter saw the hashtag #backtowork trending this week with lots of us returning to work and grudgingly waving goodbye to the festivities of the past few weeks.

I’m sure we can all agree it’s been a difficult transition; leaving the house whilst it’s still dark (and let’s be honest, we’d normally still be in our pyjamas nursing a coffee!) and as one of my favourite tweets referenced – ‘Having to get used to a proper breakfast again rather than a handful of Celebrations’ was a challenge. Luckily, we had office Starbucks’ to hand for our first day back at Blue Skies which gave us a much needed caffeine kick, but what’s the best way to keep your team motivated through the January blues and beyond?

The War For Talent Continues

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With UK employment remaining steady, even after the Brexit vote, it has become apparent that the war for talent will continue right into 2017 and that candidate scarcity remains the number one challenge for recruiters.

With this in mind, now more than ever it is important for Blue Skies as a specialist consultancy to closely support our clients in helping them successfully attract and win the best talent. The best candidates are often able to secure multiple interviews and are therefore finding work far more quickly; they have the luxury of picking and choosing between employers and it is therefore essential for us to understand their primary motivations for moving – employers who forget or ignore this do so at their peril.

In a candidate …

Our Design Our Christmas Card…Winner!

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We are pleased to announce the winner of our Blue Skies ‘Design our Christmas Card’ Competition

BETH PERRINS

Beth’s card was chosen as the winner by our judge Steve Sellick, Creative Director at Bonfire Creative Intelligence and a previous winner of our Christmas card competition.

We were overwhelmed with the response to the competition and received some fantastic designs that made the judge’s decision really quite tough. Thank you to everyone who entered.

Well done once again to Beth, enjoy your Christmas hamper! Part of the prize was for the winner’s portfolio to be presented on our website, but Beth is currently a 2nd Year Creative & Advertising student at the University of Gloucestershire, so instead Steve has offered Beth some direct portfolio advice and …

Design Our Christmas Card

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Enter our competition to design our Christmas card and you could be in with a chance of winning a £100 Fortnum and Mason hamper to enjoy over the festive period*.

All printed cards will include the designer and will be showcased on our website. Entries will be judged by the Creative Director at Bonfire Creative Intelligence (who happens to be a previous Blue Skies Christmas Card winner!)

To enter send your Christmas card design to marketing@blueskiescareers.co.uk by end of play Wednesday 23rd November. Cards will be based on an A5 (A4 folded) portrait card, full colour, double sided designs with 3mm bleed.

* hamper contents may differ from image shown

The Highest Paid Jobs of 2016

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The Office for National Statistics has recently revealed  the top 10 highest paid jobs in the UK for 2016 and retaining the number three position from 2015 is Marketing Director.

With an average salary (before tax) of £87,890, a drop of 2.5% from last year, it would seem that the Marketing Directors function is key to a company’s success across all sectors and gets paid well as a result, although geographic location will reflect a difference in the salary. Remember this is an average!

See below for the full top 10 highest paid jobs list with average salaries:

1. Brokers – £133,868 2. Chief executives – £123,577 3. Marketing Directors – £87,890 4. Aircraft pilots – £86,915 5. Financial managers and directors – £84,675 6. In-house Lawyers –  £80,210 7. Air Traffic Controllers – £81,132 …

Our Charity Of The Year

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We are proud to announce that The Shakespeare Hospice is our Charity of the Year.  From 1st November 2016 Blue Skies will be supporting, raising money and awareness for this local charity and hope to raise a target of £6000 over the course of the year.

ABOUT THE HOSPICE

The Shakespeare Hospice believes that every young person and adult living in our community with a life limiting illness, and those who matter to them, should be supported with the care and compassion they need. They aim to do this by providing expert holistic and specialist care for those suffering illness and supporting groups such as carers, cancer survivors and young people affected by a life limiting illness. Further information about the hospice can be found on their …

We’re Turning 18!

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Turning 18 years old is a big deal (we can now get our commercial pilot’s licence!) and we want to celebrate this milestone birthday with you.

For every eighteenth job brief we receive during November we will discount the final candidate placement fee by 18%*

Blue Skies have specialised in marketing, creative and agency recruitment since 1998, covering Clientside, Account Handling, Creative, Digital, PR and Events. We are a marketing recruitment agency who offer unrivalled opportunities across all specialisms and industry sectors, presenting you with only the best permanent, freelance and contract jobs.

Go ahead and brief us and help us get in the birthday spirit!

* invoice will be raised upon the candidate start date and is to be settled within the agreed …