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Inspired Selection is a recruitment agency that specializes in publishing and digital media. They have offices in London and Oxford and place candidates nationally, although in practice most of their vacancies are in the Oxford and London area. They cover all areas of publishing from scientific to financial to fiction. From working in companies that use them I have gleaned that they seem to be the most respected agency among employers
I got my current job through them, and have used them in the past when job searching so I think I am well placed to write a review of their service.
I first got in touch with about four years ago by answering an advert for a job (I can't remember where). Before putting me forward they arranged an appointment at their Regent Street office with one of their agents. They went through what I was looking for in a job and my experience with me and suggested changes to my CV to show off my skills in the best way. They didn't force these changes on me but suggested them with the rationale behind it and left it up to me whether or not I implemented them. Once I did this they went through the job with me and put me forward once they had ascertained that I was happy with the role and that I was suitable. I didn't get the job in the end but it was my own fault as I was fully briefed and the agent prepared me well for the interview. A week or so later I received an email from them about another job asking me to call them, and again they went over the role thoroughly with me (over the phone this time) and ascertained that it was right for me. Again I didn't get it but it was through no fault of the agent.
Fast forward to November last year and I was job hunting again. I emailed Inspired Selection and they said they had a role they felt I would be good for. They sent me the job spec but insisted that I went into the office to meet them again before putting me forward. Although this may seem like a hassle I actually think it is good business practice as it means the candidates put forward are suitable for the job and vice versa, and saves time in the long run as you don't waste time going to interviews for jobs you don't want and have no chance of getting anyway!
I was offered an interview, then a second interview and go the job and felt supported every step of the way. The agent even negotiated a higher salary for me.
Inspired Selection's website www.inspiredselection.com is simple but effective. You can search by location, type of job, keywords or reference number - or any combination of these. One criticism I do have is that it would be useful to be able to search via salary and sector. The job descriptions are very good, and generally contain enough information to allow you to make an informed decision about whether or not you want to apply.
If you like you can sign up to their mailshot which comes every few days and lists new jobs. You can opt to only receive jobs of particular categories, but not in particular areas of the country so you do get some that aren't relevant.
The thing that makes this agency stand out amongst all the other agencies I have used is that they seem to have the candidate's best interests at heart rather than their commission. All their agents have worked in the publishing sector so have good knowledge and they are honest about jobs. In one case I went for a job and the agent told me that the pay was lower than what I was looking for and that she felt it would be a step down in terms of experience. A lot of agencies would have sent you to the interview anyway. They really listen to what you want from a job and take it into account and are proactive in sending you jobs you might be interested in.