For over 10 years Shirley Parsons has served as a trusted advisor to clients and candidates across a wide variety of sectors and disciplines. In that time, through careful growth, we have built a specialist recruitment firm with tremendous expertise and global reach.

We remain the only HSE recruitment firm headed by a chartered safety professional and environmental specialist. We are proud of the many recommendations and accolades received over the years, a testament to the hard work, flexibility and commitment of our consultants. This is most notably demonstrated by the continued trust and confidence of our clients and candidates.

Below you will find a sample of what some of them have said about us.

“We have had a long and successful engagement with Shirley Parsons, and during each round of recruitment I’ve been highly impressed with the way that the team have taken the time to get to know our full business requirements and have worked hard to meet our very bespoke needs.”

“The candidates put forward by Shirley Parsons Associates have always been of the very highest standard, while those we’ve selected from the Shirley Parsons pool have proven their worth to the business many times over. They have consistently knitted in well with an expanding in-house safety team, that has great retention and many years of experience; and with a business that expects speed and excellence from its support functions.”

“The very high quality customer service, professionalism and dedication delivered by the team at Shirley Parsons instil the confidence I need to go back to them for their support whenever we have to venture into the H&S recruitment marketplace.”

“I have worked with Shirley Parsons for a number of years and have always found them professional and supportive through the recruitment process. What I like most is that they genuinely know all the candidates that they put forward for an interview, and not just picked off a website.”

“You take the time to visit me personally from time to time and I like dealing with one designated consultant rather than being passed around. Your knowledge of the health and safety profession and detailed knowledge of professionals within my particular industry sector is second to none.”

“I liked that you had met the candidates beforehand; you had a good understanding of what we do and took a consultative approach to your sales”

“The speed of response and availability of candidates for interviews is great. Very flexible and easy to discuss business needs in an open and frank manner.”

“Consistency of approach and single point of contact over a number of years works well. Other companies have may staff changes”

“Very helpful consultant, was great at keeping me up to date with progress on the search, I always felt in the loop.”

“Your staff were very helpful and they were very quick in putting a candidate shortlist together. In all they were very efficient.”

“The fact that the agent took the time to visit us on site and spend some time with the recruiting manager to understand the role and the requirements was very positive.”

“You pre-vet candidates rather than flooding us with rubbish CVs which many others do.”

“You don’t pester but can be relied on to produce candidates quickly when required. When we’re in process and have seen candidates again you don’t pester for updates but give us/the client Shirley Parsons to think through options and deal with issues as they arise.”

“The Shirley Parsons team have a very personal approach, regular phone calls and emails show they have a genuine interest in helping people.”

“In my experience I have always found you to be helpful and professional, you have in general understood my brief and found me good candidates.”

“I liked your specialist knowledge and expertise in H&S – both in the public and private sector. It was useful to have knowledge of a technical specialism across both sectors”

Our client: A multi-national technology company employing over 100,000 staff world-wide

Our client’s UK&I unit was winning a lot of business in the managed service space – which tends to be 24/7 with huge operational risk. There was scope for them to win a lot more business, but they did not have a senior individual leading on the HSE strategy. This was a concern going forward, as their growth increased their risk exposure. Additionally, due to the various different contractual agreements they have in place, it means that they are open to customer audits than can often differ widely dependent on whom the customer is. The role therefore had a large customer interface element to it, requiring a commercially astute individual with strong client facing skills. Our client was recommended by another HR director to approach us to discuss their need for a Director of HSE with a European remit.

As this was a brand new role for this business unit we were asked by the HR Director to create the job specification ourselves. Once done, we worked closely with HR to create a person specification, something of particular importance given that the position had dual reporting lines to two very different characters. It was also clear that a leadership gap in terms of HSE was present and that hearts and minds needed to be won over. This collaborative process is often key to ensuring a smooth ride for all parties throughout the recruitment process, this is certainly what panned our once our search commenced on this occasion.

Our personal networks were vital to providing fast and efficient delivery. Personality and leadership ability were weighted heavily in our search criteria and we were able to save time by identifying ‘known’ candidates who may be suitable, whilst in tandem dedicating a researcher to uncover other candidates working within organisations of a similar profile. Our long list of 60 was reduced by our interviewing process to a shortlist of 12, for whom we compiled information packs to discuss with our client in a meeting attended by HR and the two key stakeholders. Five candidates were selected for a first stage HR interview, based on a mixture of our recommendations and discussion on the various merits of certain individuals against the context of current challenges within the organisation.

Two clear contenders were identified at the client’s first interview stage and an appointment followed after two subsequent stages which involved 4 other stakeholders. We were able to help both parties come to an agreement regarding relocation assistance and kept communication between ourselves, the client and the candidate alive as the notice period was served and as the successful candidate was on-boarded.

“Very prompt responses to emails or phone calls. Friendly and easy to approach regarding any queries. Useful when trying to communicate with employer.”

“Very personal touch. Treated like an individual rather than just another number. Excellent, individual advice provided compared to the ‘one size fits all’ ‘advice’ offered by other recruitment companies”

“The personal service offered by Shirley Parsons is remarkable. I felt like my ambitions and drivers for change were taken on board by everyone who worked on my behalf. The offers presented to me had been filtered to ensure suitability and the support during the entire process was notably constant, engaging and enthusiastic.”

“Shirley Parsons are good communicators and well organised. The ‘much hated’ but necessary paperwork is always processed in a speedy and comprehensive manner leading to a prompt payment.”

“Liked the approachable style and ‘honest’ relationship with the team. My experience with you was better than with other agencies; I felt I was being treated with a friendly respect. Thank you..”

“I really like the people at Shirley Parsons; they are professional, helpful and friendly. I know they have lots of people on their books but it’s lovely that they always manage to make me feel like I’m a priority. They are really supportive and take a lot of the stress out of the process of searching for and applying for a job.”

“I particularly like the approach undertaken by Shirley Parsons’s personnel. They do not bother you with the obvious ‘canvassing’ for unrealistic positions which may be either too senior or too junior for your skill set. I appreciate the fact that the roles suggested seems to have been considered in conjunction with the candidates abilities and qualifications. I also feel comfortable discussing the roles and am happy that any questions will be answered competently.”

“I liked the fact I was invited in to meet the team and also for the team to get an understanding of the type of candidate I was and what job roles I was going to be suitable for. It was a professional meeting and gained 2 interviews in quick succession. This was the first time a recruitment company had invited me in and it really makes Shirley Parsons stand out from other recruiters.”

“I like the personal relationship that is created with the candidates and the genuine effort to find a suitable job for job seekers. Shirley Parsons from my experience with the company is also very good at introducing job seekers to the most appropriate opportunities and providing support at every stage of the employment”

“I have a list of “likes”, but essentially the knowledge and honest advice that is always provided. What amazed me was the importance placed on each candidate being met face-to-face prior to be placed or recommended regardless of location. Finally, another thing I believe that sets SPA above other agencies is that you are kept in touch with just to see how things are going.”

“I have dealt with numerous agencies over the past few years and I have been lucky if I get a standard holding reply, let alone calls and emails keeping me updated. I had lost all faith with employment agencies and I can’t praise yourself and Shirley Parsons enough. You have set a gold standard in how to look after candidates.”