The recession enriches….

Despite the shrinking market place, the tightening of belts, reduced margins, profit warnings and hysterical doom mongering, this economic bobsled has delivered the greatest growth period in terms of innovation and product enhancement that our business has seen since inception 4 years ago.

Despite the shrinking market place, the tightening of belts, reduced margins, profit warnings and hysterical doom mongering, this economic bobsled has delivered the greatest growth period in terms of innovation and product enhancement that our business has seen since inception 4 years ago.

They say that in good times businesses get richer and in bad times they get better. Having forsaken the riches, the pay off has been huge leaps in quality as we finally find that much sought after 20% excess time that can be leveraged to work ‘on the business’ rather than in it. As a result, and in a strange twist of fate, the huge flux that we’ve all experienced over the last 6-12 months has in effect improved our business and set us up to deliver more innovative staffing solutions, a leaner and fitter business and ultimately, a stronger partnership offering to our clients.

Our industry, tactical staffing, is suffering just as our clients suffer, budgets continue to be slashed and burned, and the pipeline is no longer a reliable indicator of revenue for the coming months. We have reached a stage in the cycle where some suppliers within the space are starting to resort to survival pricing, costing activity at any price to win the business, and as a result damaging the value perception with clients and putting further pressure on the earning capacity of the field staff who continue to experience frozen pay rates.

The staffing agencies who are resorting to such drastic price cutting have clearly exhausted their quality driven proposal and as a result, clients should be wary of these agencies delivering the ‘cheapest service’ as opposed to the ‘best value’.

The quality providers within the industry appear to be faring relatively well, considering, and the agencies who look to innovate and continue to strive to deliver additional value rather than pure cost cutting, will manage through this recession whilst retaining their quality proposition. For Mash, our driver for this year is ‘excellence’, capitalising on the 20% time to further enhance our service offering, leverage the goodwill that we have built with our field staff community and further strengthen our partnerships. As the economy recovers and our partners start to grow once again, we’ll prosper in turn, delivering a greater partnership offering and operating in a space where only the strong will be left standing.

Leyton Ede, Client Services Director, Mash Marketing Ltd

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Chris Wareham