Apollo Fire Detectors Ltd and Workshop Recruitment: Finding the staff they need

Apollo Fire Detectors Ltd specialises in the design and manufacture of high-quality fire detection solutions for commercial and industrial applications. Based in Havant, Hampshire they have been designing and manufacturing products that save people and property from the risk of fire since 1980.

Wendy Osborne, Director of Talent and Culture at Apollo Fire Detectors Ltd said the Company wanted to improve the quality of candidates to reduce the turnover rate within the first 12 weeks of employment.

A few years ago, Wendy and the team at Apollo were struggling to consistently find quality staff who were capable of quickly upskilling and would stay the course. Wendy says:

‘Either temporary staff were joining, realising the working environment wasn’t for them and then ultimately leaving after a short space of time, or we were letting staff go as they were unable to upskill quickly enough, and work at speed.  The situation was seriously inefficient and costly’

The selection process needed to be more efficient.  They needed an increased certainty that temporary staff would be capable of doing the job before they started and vetted sufficiently to know whether they would last after training was completed.

Production staff need to accurately solder at speed. Taking a soldering test as part of the vetting process was something that would ultimately help ensure new recruits would be up to the job. To facilitate this Apollo supplied the tools, and pcb boards to Workshop.  The other preferred agency was unable to accommodate this, citing health and safety protocols.  “They simply wouldn’t do it, saying they couldn’t for health and safety purposes,” said Wendy.

Workshop slashed the red tape…

Workshop slashed the red tape…

Because Workshop is an independent company, they can be agile in their decision making and were happy to accommodate the soldering test prior to new staff starting without any unnecessary fuss and cumbersome protocols. Staff also take an English test to ensure they are able to understand both written and verbal instructions while working in the factory.

‘By doing all the vetting tests it gives Workshop the ability to have a bank of people ready’ Wendy confirms. ‘And that gave us the ability to adapt our induction, and reduce the turnover rate’

Colin Walker, one of Workshop’s Directors who oversees the day-to-day operational activities within Apollo, then walks new recruits around the factory to show them where they’ll be working so they can quickly see if the working environment is right for them.

Colin supported by Workshops other two directors Peter and Daimion, have a particularly hands-on approach with Apollo.

‘Before the pandemic, Colin was on site every day checking in, making sure everything was running smoothly’ says Wendy ‘He was able to troubleshoot any issues before they became a serious problem’

Wendy notes that Pete, who is in charge of finding permanent staff for Apollo:

‘Understands the business, and is very driven to get the right candidates for the business, he doesn’t give up’.

It’s this level of service, and the quick reaction to match the company’s staffing demands Wendy and her team really appreciates, it’s a relationship based on trust, honesty and integrity that has spanned decades.

'The response rate of Workshop is extremely fast'

'The response rate of Workshop is extremely fast'

The excellent relationship Apollo has with Workshop Recruitment initiated a completely streamlined way new recruits are vetted and introduced to the job. This has saved time, stress, and money.

People who can’t do the job are quickly discovered and this has made way for the skilled recruits who want to work and get the job done. Wendy feels like they have someone supporting Apollo on a day-to-day basis and catching any issues before they arise.

‘Workshop have a really good grasp on the business, and the skills we need. Because of this, and our longstanding relationship Workshop are one of our top and most favoured recruiters’

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