Andrew Blake, Consultant, Commerce Qualified Permanent Division
"I graduated with a degree in accounting and finance from Loughborough University. My knowledge was further supported by joining PricewaterhouseCoopers on their ACA graduate programme. I continually sought more challenging involvement working within their Assurance and Business Advisory Services function and decided that I wanted to gain more control of my own development and so decided to seek new challenges elsewhere.
I joined Robert Walters within the Research function before being promoted to consultant within the Commerce Permanent Division. I found that at Robert Walters there is a genuine feeling of being in control of your own career. It very much feels like running your own business within the security of a plc, and this ownership provides daily motivation for every team member. The fact that we work to a team-based bonus structure helps create an exciting atmosphere and ensures that there's a real team focus and an emphasis on quality of service to the candidate and client.
The daily challenge has given me a real drive to succeed, and there is a real prospect of international career opportunities and promotion within a short space of time. My decision to use my accounting knowledge in another professional services company is one that I have been extremely happy with - I'm looking forward to carving out future success here."
Marco Maranzano, Consultant, Financial Services
"I graduated from the University of Brighton in 2005 and successfully secured a one year internship with JP Morgan in New York. Through networking opportunities whilst in America, I gained employment in the UK with JP Morgan but and I then went on to assist portfolio managers with cash management queries at Capital Group.
I always had recruitment or sales in the back of my mind as a career path and so looked into opportunities at a number of firms, but Robert Walters truly stood out as the kind of professional environment I was used to post JP Morgan and Capital Group and in January 2008 I joined Robert Walters to assist with the set up of the Banking Operations (Contract) Business Development team. In the first six months I succeeded in developing new relationships with investment banks, brokerages and commodity trading firms. Immediately I knew this was the industry for me, and realised the benefit of having worked in the financial sector first hand, as this has enabled me to understand client and candidate requests in more detail, giving me credibility from the outset.
After just over two and half years within the role the team has developed to a point where we are generating significant revenue."
Michael Fraser, Manager, Banking Division
"I've worked in various roles in the banking sector which gave me a great breadth of knowledge that I've applied in my current role as a manager of the banking division at Robert Walters.
I started out at FNB Retail bank where I gained my first experience within client services. I then moved through to TMA Investment, broadening my skill-set to work with brokers. With itchy feet and a desire to see more of the world I moved to London planning to stay for two years. Eight years later my CV boasted experience working within three of the largest banks in London, including Deutsche, ABN AMRO and Barcap; where I developed an understanding of the roles and the types of candidates required. However with a growing family and the yearning to be able to play golf on the weekends again, my family and I returned home.
In 2008 I was offered an opportunity to join Robert Walters Johannesburg, where I was able to combine my customer service and banking expertise. The role has allowed me to leverage off my South African network and past experience to build strong partnerships within the banking industry. With these skills and resources I have consistently exceeded targets, which Robert Walters has recognised and rewarded through a promotion within a year of starting, as well as various benefits including a 'top biller' trip away."
Ricky Mui, Manager, Legal Contract Division
"I studied law and psychology at the University of Western Australia and worked in Perth as a lawyer for top tier law firm Phillips Fox until 2000. Before making my decision to come to London, I attended a Robert Walters ‘Working Overseas’ roadshow in Perth and thought the opportunity to work and travel abroad was exactly what I was looking for. While interviewing as a candidate in 2003 I was offered, and accepted, a position as a legal consultant at Robert Walters and became the director of the legal recruitment division in 2008. In 2009 I decided to take on a new challenge and moved to Hong Kong to start their legal recruitment division.
Legal recruitment allows me to combine my legal experience in a commercial environment providing professional services to both candidates and clients. I had never thought about working in this sector, but recruitment is extremely satisfying and it definitely suits me and my personality.
At Robert Walters the people make the company. You can’t beat the work ethic and culture of the firm. It is a fantastic opportunity to work in a professional environment with like-minded colleagues who have solid legal and recruitment credentials. The work ethos cultivates a team working environment and allows consultants to get the best out of each other."
Ozlem Simsek, Manager, Walters Interim, Brussels
"After obtaining a Masters in Economics at the University of Brussels and another Masters in Business Administration at the Solvay Business School, I started my professional career working in the financial department of the Belgian Government. After a year I decided to become a financial recruitment consultant and three years after that, in 2005, I moved to Robert Walters as a Senior Consultant. I was offered the challenge to help launch the contracting business division in Belgium: Walters Interim and a year later became Manager.
At Robert Walters, I have really been given the opportunity to manifest my creativity and develop my entrepreneurial talents. Leveraging Robert Walters outstanding brand has allowed me to grow the business significantly, providing a high level of service to both clients and candidates. The variety and challenging nature of the job make my professional experience at Robert Walters very satisfying. Taking on the challenge Robert Walters offered me was probably my best decision yet."
Oliver Harris, Chief Operating Officer, Resource Solutions, London
"After completing a degree in Economics and Geography at Exeter University I came to London to find work within investment banking and registered with Robert Walters to facilitate this. Before long I was offered a position as a trainee recruitment consultant on the banking operations contract team. I took on a portfolio of clients where I aimed to grow market share whilst developing new clients.
Within two years I developed into a successful billing consultant and was promoted to team leader, and then a year later, manager. I managed the banking operations contract team before moving to manage the middle office finance and accountancy contract teams. I was promoted again to Director of our financial services contract division, which encompasses all contract recruitment for the banking and financial services sector. Now, I manage all contract recruitment across the UK.
A key factor which played a vital part in my career at Robert Walters has been the company culture and the nature of the work. Robert Walters is a fantastic organisation where you have the opportunity to work with energetic, outgoing, like-minded people who work hard but have a lot of fun in the process. Robert Walters has always maintained a focus on creating a fun working culture which has resulted in a truly unique working environment."
Naeem Iqbal, Director, IT, Tokyo
"I joined Robert Walters in February 2001 with no recruitment experience. A well structured training programme helped me quickly grasp the fundamentals of recruitment. It was not long before I was developing new client relationships and working on exclusive assignments. By the end of my first year I was promoted to senior consultant and was given the opportunity to attend a training programme in Singapore, which made me feel part of a global team. I was then promoted to manage the IT recruitment division and again attended training courses, which were a great asset in my early days of management.
As Director of the IT division, I managed a total of four teams since 2006 . I was appointed Director of the Contract division in 2010 and continue to assist in developing strategy to further grow and enhance our Tokyo recruitment business. The professional sales environment and the well structured training programme were also influential in my decision to join the firm."