Business First meets Paul Armstrong, Group Director at Reactive Recruitment.

Paul Armstrong, Group Director
Paul Armstrong talks with Business First about 3 years of success and plans for the future

When Paul Armstrong tells the story of how he was headhunted to run a new recruitment business in Belfast, he still laughs when he recalls showing up to a room full of flatpack furniture and unpacked computers.

“I knew I was starting work in a new company, but I didn’t realise just how new it was!” says Paul. Luckily he had a screwdriver in his car and immediately got to work building a business.

“That was three years ago this month and I think even Paul would admit that at the time, although he had high ambitions for this company, it has surprised him how much growth the business has seen in its infant years.

That said, even though the company was new, Paul and his business partner Max weren’t.

As a partnership, they have over 40 years of experience within the industry and were always confident that there was room in the market for a new, energetic, company.

The business has changed a lot since the 2nd of April 2014, over the last three years they have quickly grown to become one of the leading Recruitment Consultancies in the province and have seen revenues triple year on year.

The business now employs 12 dedicated Recruitment Professionals, servicing the Manufacturing & Engineering, Professional Services, and Healthcare sectors; they are very confident that despite the uncertainty Brexit is bringing, they will continue to match their previous years’ success in 2017.

Paul says, “Obviously since Brexit we have seen a lot of confusion as to what the marketplace will look like, but I’m confident that provided Stormont operates with a certain level of common sense and speed, this year will generate a lot of opportunities for us, this means working harder and focusing on continuing to provide a quality service to our clients, ­ but working hard is normal for us!”

This positive outlook has translated into plans to grow the company’s team further in 2017.They have already added new members of staff within the last two months, and hope to have two more in place by June.

Paul states that “Scaling up our workforce is a reflection of a steady rise in demand from our clients who are determined to build upon their own growth. It’s important for us to match our client’s ambitions.”

This Belfast-­based consultancy are equally confident about the future, Bobby Sturgeon, Business Manager, says that, “We recently celebrated our 1000th placement, which was a great achievement for both myself and the rest of the team and looking back over the last financial year we have definitely seen an increase in the number of vacancies we are receiving and from speaking with our clients, it seems that companies in Northern Ireland are recognising that to continue to expand and grow, you need to attract the best talent available to your business.”

Paul started his career in recruitment 15 years ago as a trainee within a large recruitment firm, operating across Ireland and has defined his success within the industry by his work­ethic, “I realised fairly early in my career that in recruitment, your success is entirely dependent upon the amount of work you are willing to put in.

“I’m proud to have once been described as having the energy of a four­ year­ old who has just found a family packet of Haribo and two tins of Redbull.

“As Group Director of Reactive Recruitment, I still work just as hard, it’s a lesson that I think is fundamental to our success and I’m confident that by continuing to put the work in for our clients, we will continue to be successful.”