The most important thing in the relationship with your recruitment agency, is honesty. The more honest and open that both candidates and clients are, the more they are likely to get out of partnering with a recruitment agency.
As a candidate being honest about what you want and expect from a job is made easier by having a third party to ‘sound out’ your expectations. This will give you the opportunity to find out if these are realistic and feasible without potentially ruining opportunities. If you are using a specialist agency, they will be extremely experienced in the industry and be able to offer vital advice. It is great for candidates to be focussed and have a good idea of what they want and this enables agencies to match them with the right employers for them. It is also important that they are realistic and ensure that they have the relevant skills and experience that the role requires and a good agency will be able to advise where and if there is any flexibility on this. Communication with your agency is key and ensuring that you are available to pick up and answer messages, either by phone or email, as promptly as possible will ensure that you don’t miss out on potential opportunities. If you are flexible and reliable, your recruitment agency is much more likely to be proactive on your behalf. If you are unsure of anything it is always best to ask and if you are worried about any particular aspect of the job or remuneration package it is always good to raise this with your agency at the earliest possible opportunity. Always let your agency know about other opportunities you are exploring as a good agency should offer impartial advice and be more focussed on creating long term partnerships than the quick win. They should therefore hopefully have your interests at heart and give you the information and benefit of their experience to allow you to make the right choice for you.
Keep your agency informed of any changes
As a client, it is also extremely important to be as honest as possible with your agency partner. The goalposts will often move throughout the recruitment process but keeping your agency updated and aware of these changes is critical to ensuring they are able to manage the candidate’s expectations. Honest feedback on the candidates is also essential so that the agency can help to ensure that the candidates are going for the right opportunities for them and are able to learn from their experiences. Clients also need to be realistic with their expectations and realise that it is not always possible to tick every box. Again, a good specialist agency will be able to give advice on where it is best to be flexible as they are likely to have an excellent grasp on the current market. Where possible it is always best to use one specialist agency rather than multiple agencies as this commitment will be matched by the agency’s commitment. Partnering with the right agency and showing commitment to them will allow them to become a great ambassador for your company to ensure you maintain the value of your employer brand.
Did you know that the UK is
the world’s biggest exporter of books? Publishing
is a large and growing industry and the total number of books published in the
UK last year was 173,000. Publishing
businesses in the UK alone have a collective annual turnover of £6 billion,
making the UK the fifth biggest market in the world after the US, China,
Germany, and Japan. On average, the UK publishing industry employs 30,000
people directly and roughly 70,000 people indirectly spread across over 8,000
publishers. Publishing is now a multimedia business and last year digital books
accounted 15% of the 360,000,000 physical and eBooks sold. Ebook sales have
dropped a little in recent years from 17% to 15%, perhaps because they are
being rapidly displaced by digital audio books! These figures give you an idea
of the size and importance of the publishing industry.
Earlier in the month, Parissa
Bagheri from Atwood Tate was invited back to her alma mater, the University of
Greenwich, to attend an event they were holding to discuss Working in the Book
Trade: The Business of Selling Books. The panel of speakers included CEO of
Bonnier, Perminder Mann, CEO of Hachette, David Shelley, and the Ex-Chairman of
Blackwell’s Bookshop Trevor Goul-Wheeker. These leading figures in publishing
and the book trade shared their experiences and journeys into publishing,
offering advice to those in the audience looking to do the same. We know a lot of our followers are aspiring
publishing professionals or still young in their publishing career, so wanted
to share their insights with you too.
CEO of Hachette David
Shelley was first up in telling the audience about how he entered the industry.
David’s parents owned a second-hand bookshop, so he was exposed to the sales
side of publishing from an early age. He began his career as an Editorial
Assistant for Alison and Busby (a well-established small publisher). He kept the company running for 5 years and
encompassed problems along the way, such as the book distributor going bust and
relocating the office near to Brixton near to where he lived. The owner of
Little, Brown asked David if he would consider buying a few books a year as an
Editor and he joined the company, which eventually led to his promotion to
Publisher, then Head of Division, and finally to his current role running
Hachette publishes 5,000
books every year and has a staff of 18,000. David explained that the editorial departments
receive 1,000 applications for every editorial assistant job, whereas the sales
team often only receive around three direct applications. He emphasised the
importance of exploring different sectors; foreign rights professionals get to
read, travel and correspond with authors whereas, production departments,
whilst equally driven and creative focus more on the people and processes in
the background. David also advised that publishers are looking for people who
are keen to work in finance, also stating that the first two to three years of
entering the industry is all about grafting your way through. It is necessary
to differentiate yourself from others, don’t rely on just the contacts you have.
Don’t be afraid to be bold and fearless in your first year, don’t undersell
yourself, and be proud and show off your achievements. People love to mentor
younger people, so offer to have coffee with them to show your passion and
His tips for a good cover
Look up the books
that your target publisher is publishing and research its heritage
Brilliant quality writing
– this is a reflection of how well you can communicate
Talk about your
favourite writers, what are they doing?
Be thoughtful and
Don’t follow the
rules strictly, break rules and disagree!
Bonnier is the sixth largest
publishing company in the UK and its CEO Perminder Mann also talked about her
experience in the publishing industry. Growing up, she spent much of her time
reading, making sure to build up her English vocabulary. She spent time
interning and eventually had an interview with Macmillan for a role in its in
Special Sales department. She was offered the job, which she explained was quite
challenging, but she used the opportunity to gain as much knowledge as she
could. Perminder was then promoted in sales and travelled throughout the UK to
meet buyers. Later she moved to Transworld (now part of Penguin Random House)
as an entrepreneur in a five person team, and faced the problem of not having
as much contact or support, constantly having to juggle between having a career
and being a mother. She survived that and then moved into children’s
publishing, but was travelling too much and decided to move out of publishing altogether. Publishing isn’t quite like any other
industry, though, and she ended up returning when she was offered a position at
Perminder talked about how at
Bonnier you don’t have to choose between a career and family, as you can work flexibly
she has put benefits in place such as a good a maternity policy. This is something that Perminder is extremely
passionate about given her own experience throughout her career and she is now
in the middle of improving paternity pay and continuing to champion equality.
Finally, the ex-chairman of
Blackwell’s Bookshop Trevor Goul-Wheeker took to the floor to explain how he
fell in love with the publishing industry. Trevor started off as a bookseller
and fell in love with the book trade, partly because of the people involved in
it. Blackwell’s is a well-known book retailer, but as the digital publishing
industry gradually took over, Blackwell’s was forced to start closing stores
and were closing 16 high street shops every day. Currently, the UK bookshops
account for 41% of books sold with ecommerce accounting for 35% of book sales. However,
Trevor stated that bookshop recommendations are still the number one influencer
when people are choosing which book to buy. He believes that bookshops still offer
customer engagement and a valued experience and that bookselling and publishing
go hand in hand.
All three speakers did
emphasise that you do not need a masters to get into publishing; most
publishing companies prefer more hands on experience, which shows a variety of
skills. They also all agreed that ecommerce
and ebooks are slowly taking over from print as they are easier to access and
to read on the go. Audio books are now attracting a new demographic of “readers”
and enabling publishers to tap into a new market. Publishers are already and
will continue to learn about and develop in the area of audio.
Did you know that if you referred a friend, you could receive £200 in vouchers?
If you see a vacancy that doesn’t quite match your requirements, but you think you know someone who will be interested, then simply forward the relevant vacancy details to a friend or colleague. If they’re not already registered with us and they are successfully placed into a new permanent role, you will receive £200 in vouchers of your choice when they have completed 3 months in their new position.
Terms & Conditions
The candidate must reference you in their application to us. Or if you forward us their details, you must mention the vacancy title and reference number.
Only candidates who are not currently registered with Atwood Tate may be considered.
The offer will only apply to the role they are recommended for and not if they are placed within a different role at a later date.
Payment will be made once the referred candidate has completed a period of three months in the role. We will contact you to confirm this and get details to supply your vouchers.
We are delighted to announce that we have two new team members! The team is very excited to welcome back Catherine Roney, (after some time out) Cat will be working on permanent roles in London and the Home Counties. The fabulous Novia Kingshott will be supporting Kellie Millar on the Temps/Freelancers desk as a Senior Publishing Recruitment Consultant.
Catherine first joined Atwood Tate after working for Octopus Publishing Group as an International Sales Executive. Responsible for selling International rights as well as supporting the International Sales team, Catherine has a keen understanding of the publishing industry. Originally from Western Australia and with a love of all things book-related, Catherine is excited to re-join the team after taking an extended maternity leave.
Catherine’s s focus at Atwood Tate will be in Marketing, Publicity, Product Management and Customer Service, covering all sectors in London, the Home Counties and East Anglia.
Throughout her recruitment career, Novia has focused solely on temps as she loves the fast paced and urgency the temps recruitment process requires. Novia is very experienced in placing top notch candidates within healthcare, medical, government and legal fields. With a passion for publishing, Novia is looking forward to offering her 5 star customer service to candidates and clients alike.
Novia will be supporting Kellie Millar on the Temps/Freelancers desk as a Senior Publishing Recruitment Consultant.
Publishers contact us to book temps when they need an extra pair of hands to help them meet a deadline or when they are extra busy. These roles are also urgent with almost immediate starts. Our clients also need temps to cover sick leave or to cover whilst a new permanent team member is being recruited. They may even consider the temp! Temp roles can range from 2 days up to 6 months and can be extended further and even lead to a permanent role.
Temping with Atwood Tate
The Temps/Freelancers team cover roles across the entire publishing industry including trade and educational, Academic, Science as well as professional and B2B, digital and print. They
also cover administration, finance, HR, marketing, and
Anna is a former Atwood Tate temp herself and had a few admin placements in Accounts Payable and Publications Teams. As
she can testify temps are paid weekly on Fridays and receive holiday pay which
goes into a “pot” they draw from when they go on annual leave. Temps can be
paid by hour or have a day rate depending on the job.
clients aren’t all publishers but have a busy publishing team. These also
include a royal academic society, a charity or even a
standards or ratings publisher. A lot of the time when temping, skills are
readily transferrable and employers are more flexible regarding your work
background. Marketing roles are particularly easy to transfer across or
specialist knowledge such as science or law can be very useful in editorial for
those specialist subject publishers.
How will temping benefit me and is an extension guaranteed?
Sometimes temps cover a role more senior or more junior than they
would typically expect. This could be in a different area to one they have
worked in before or one they do because they love what the publisher works on and the job. Temping is great for exploring the industry
and various companies.
Temp roles will often say “extensions possible” this is because
roles can be extended for more days and weeks or a contract on the publisher’s
payroll could be offered. There are no guarantees but it does happen and you
are more than welcome to apply for internal vacancies while working for that
publisher which may not be available to the general public.
Candidates do come to Atwood Tate specifically wanting temp or
freelance work but quite often they are looking for a permanent job but don’t
yet have the required experience so the Temps team can help to get that ‘foot
in the door’. Once a candidate has a bit more experience in publishing, the
Permanent Team can help look for a permanent role in publishing. Kellie and
Novia can help you to build up that in-house experience.
What is the recruitment process for temping?
A role comes in. We tell you about it / You express interest. We put
you forward. If the client chooses your CV you can start working immediately or there
may be a telephone interview or even a face to face interview. Interviews are
less formal and shorter with temp roles.
As a Temp: work hard + submit timesheets + be paid on Fridays =
WORK IN PUBLISHING!!!
(You also learn a lot no matter how well you know the role and get to work with some really lovely people.)
We are delighted to announce we have an amazing new trainee consultant, Parissa Bagheri! Parissa has joined our London office where she is learning the ropes before becoming a fully fledged Publishing Recruitment Consultant. Parissa is supporting Karine Nicpon on editorial in London and the Home Counties.
Parissa graduated earlier this year with a Masters with Distinction in English Literature, looking for a role in the publishing industry. Her interests include reading, writing, health and fitness and travel. She is currently reading Everything I know About Love by Dolly Alderton and her favourite film is Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby. Parissa joined Atwood Tate as a Trainee Recruitment Consultant in October 2018 where she works on Editorial roles in London and the Home Counties.
Welcome to Atwood Tate’s industry spotlight series, where we go behind the scenes of each of our recruitment desks to give you the scoop on working with Atwood Tate. This week Clare returns, focusing on roles in STM publishing
What does ‘STM’ means in publishing?
STM publishing refers to scholarly, Scientific, Technical, Medical and professional publishers. In Atwood Tate, we work with a wide range of publishers from academic and scientific publishers, learned societies, open-access publishers and professional bodies to reach out to publishing professionals. The content is often journals or books based, for journals, there are open-access journals and subscription journals.
What will be the academic requirement?
The majority of roles we work on require a scientific degree. It is not often that a Master’s or PhD is required but for senior editorial positions, especially working on a particular scientific subject, it is likely that a specific academic background will be needed. However, for roles that are more operational or with a strategic focus, companies might be more flexible on educational background. Some candidates have, for example, an English degree who now work in a managerial STM publishing role so never say never!
What roles do we work on within STM publishing?
We work on roles from junior to senior level. From Editorial or Publication Assistant, to middleweight Production Editor or Commissioning Editor; senior level Managing Editor or Publishing Operations Manager and so on. STM publishing is a big area and it is full of potential to transfer your expertise.
Is there good progression in STM Publishing?
STM publishing is fast growing and blooming quickly so there will definitely be good progression. Through working with different portfolio of journals and academia, you will grow your network and gain a wider knowledge of STM publishing. Currently, a lot of STM publishers are expanding and restructuring so there are definitely opportunities to grow your career in the field.
If you could write ‘THE book’ on something, the definitive how-to guide on any subject, which topic would you choose?
This is also my one true fact to share but I wrote 6,000 words about cinnamon instead of a dissertation for my degree! It wasn’t definitive so I’d quite like to go back and do that someday. (It was a choice between cinnamon or coffee at the time but I didn’t want to end up hating coffee!)
What three books changed your life?
First Test by Tamora Pierce
Where a girl didn’t have to pretend to be a boy to do what she wanted! (Tamora Pierce started in the eighties and is having a revival at the moment) It didn’t so much change my life as shape it from the start because my mum read it to me when I was about six I think.
The Corfu Trilogy by Gerald Durrell
(Slightly cheating I know but I only picked it up because it was so thick!) This autobiography melded fact and storytelling the point where I went off and wrote about cinnamon and studied Creative Nonfiction later. It’s been adapted into several television productions each different from the last. It showed me that real life can be as interesting as fiction and imagination can be applied to everything. Even slugs.
Kitchen by Banana Yoshimoto
I often give people the impression that I only read longer books or sprawling series, this isn’t entirely true because of this book. The amount of foreign literature in translation on British shelves is minimal – this is criminal. Kitchen is two novellas by a Japanese author that were somehow mainstream enough to be in English at my local library. Novellas are often underrated or undervalued, unfortunately they cost almost the same as much lengthier paperbacks. But some stories should be a certain length. Some stories need a certain style, a certain pace. Some stories are specific and individual and particular. But resonate. I now actively look for shorter fiction and translations.
If you were given the chance to have one superpower from any book/comic character, what would you have?
Walking between worlds. It’s something of a theme in Diana Wynne Jones from her nine-lived enchanters with the title Chrestomanci to Howl of the Moving Castle fame (the film is very different! In the book he’s actually Howell Jenkins from Wales in our world) and in Homeward Bounders while in The Merlin Conspiracy there is confusion with multiple Earths…
The way it can mean so many different things even to one author strikes me as something special. It normally makes the character appreciate the world they come from or find one they prefer! I like the idea of seeing how different societies function and being able to choose for myself, much like a good book…
Who would you invite (and why) to your fantasy literary dinner party?
There’s a saying: “never meet your heroes” and a lot of the best characters can be very obnoxious… I’m actually reading The Immortal Dinner at the moment with Keats and Wordsworth in appearance but Wordsworth sounds like a very difficult guest at times!
Do you invite characters or authors? What would they eat? Does Bob Dylan count, having won the Nobel Prize? If this is a fantasy literary dinner party I would invite my dad and Bob Dylan to talk to each other because my dad would love that, and William Morris; I would invite my mum and Margaret Drabble because she introduced me to her, and Eric Hobsbawm; and I would quietly slip out the back door and ask my parents about it later as an after-party. I don’t know who would be making the food. My parents introduced me to literature for which I can never thank them enough so I think I’d rather they get the opportunity and I know I would have no regrets, facilitation being the better part of valour.
On Thursday we attended the OPuS Event Careers in 21st century publishing at Oxford Brookes University. The event featured three speakers from a wide range of companies who talked through their own specific work experience path. The event aimed to answer questions on the ease of progressing and moving around in publishing, what key elements are needed to build your career and the possibility of finding success outside traditional publishing companies.
Ian completed the Oxford Brookes MA as he wanted to change careers. He completed an internship at John Wiley and then applied for the position of Digital Publishing Executive at Wiley, he then moved into product management for mobile platforms. He is now Product Management for Elsevier working on The Science Direct Article page.
Aaron also studied the MA in Publishing at Oxford Brookes and completed internships at OUP and the International Labour Office in Geneva. Her first role in publishing was for a small African Publisher in Oxford, she then moved away from publishing into crowdfunding, then story led interactive games and is now a Sales and Marketing Manager for a Sherlock themed escape room.
After completing her MA in Publishing at Oxford Brookes, Saskia worked for Lightening Source as a marketing coordinator and she is now a marketing specialist for Ingram Vital Source.
Here are some interesting tips from the evening:
• Take risks
• Technology is everything and digital skills are important
• Organisation is key
• Talk to your company about career development opportunities
• Soft skills are vital
• Feedback is a good thing, use constructive feedback to improve
• Recognise that publishing is all about collaboration
• Take Risks, if the role does not suit you and you are not happy move on
• Be curious and talk to everyone, get to know people from different places
• Try everything and do everything, volunteer at university events, join societies like OPuS, SYP
• Create the role that you want
• Adapt and be flexible and keep learning
Do you remember our article about B2B reporters? Today we will look at a specific category of journalists: Market Reporters!
Market reporters (or Pricing/Price Reporters) are journalists with distinct duties. They assess commodities prices and write market commentaries and news on specific markets.
Commodities are substances or products that can be traded. Single commodities markets include metals (gold, zinc, steel), energy (fuel oil, natural gas) or agriculture (rice, wheat, corn).
Market reporters talk to trader and investors to establish a list of prices, either on a daily or weekly basis. They also need to develop solid relationship with commodity analysts, forecasters, financial planners and company CEOs and expand and maintain this network.
Investors rely on market reporters for information about what to buy, sell or hold. As their analysis has an impact on the stock market, these journalists can be influential. They need a great deal of diplomacy as well as resilience and communication skills.
Market reporters are expected to:
Develop an expertise of their industry, build strong contacts within it and attend relevant conferences, meeting and events
Assess prices and write commentaries and news about the industry
Interview professionals and travel when required to attend meetings
Keep up to date and report on foreign markets
Have a good head for numbers and be meticulous with the data they collect
Our clients are open to graduates with the following degrees:
Of course, employers will expect you to have excellent writing and numerical skills. For senior positions, a relevant track record in the industry is necessary.
This article was the last of our series on B2B Job Focus, we hope you enjoyed it!