With over 7 years of Contract Recruitment, Dan Rose is the Global Head of Project Solutions and a trailblazer at NextWave.
In this interview, he tells us more about implementing tailored Contract Solutions in the Energy and Technology industries.
As the Global Head of Project Solutions, what does your position entail?
Dan: My position is about having another perspective on recruitment. It is about how can we provide manpower or headhunting specific solutions to clients and projects on the market and how we can help solve a problem within their business. NextWave provides permanent headhunting services more traditionally, but we are providing contract services as well, which allows us to have a more solutions-oriented approach to recruitment.
How are you implementing Contract Solutions across the Energy and Technology branches of the business?
Dan: Both branches are very similar in terms of contract solutions. The mapping, headhunting and piecing together the best talents within the sectors comes down to the specialisation in the industry, so the resourcing is essentially the same. The difference comes with the types of contract needs. The Technology space looks more at office-based individuals, often more locals, where the transition and mobilisation are more straight-forward. Energy is looking more at project-based solutions, mobilising contractors to remote places of the world where the projects are built. So it's a different type of solutions we provide there, a lot more rounded with many different moving pieces to take into account from immigration, invoicing to manpower laws.
Often we are partnering with clients, not only to find the right individual but also to help them set up their business in-country with the right entity around it. We are creating client-specific solutions, trying to solve an issue that they are facing, whether it is a permanent establishment or emergency gaps within projects for example because ultimately recruitment is about people and you have to be adaptable to align onto that.
What is your career background and what led you into Contract Recruitment?
Dan: I started recruitment doing Permanent mandates within a very niche space, fitting talent pools into small businesses. Understanding how to put together complex Contract solutions came about 7 years ago, when I started to get a better understanding of the Energy market, the transmission and distribution as well as power generation. I realised that these different areas have issues that won't be solved with headhunting but with other solutions. For me, it was an interest piece on how to help my clients in the best way possible. Over the course of the years, I enjoyed being more involved in the commercial aspects of the project and seeing it come to life.
What is your outlook on Contract Solutions in APAC?
Dan: Within APAC, Contracting has become a lot more understood but it used to be misconceived. Now looking at solutions within Asia, whether it is Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia or the Philippines, there has been a big increase. It is an evolution process, we are seeing some of the companies we partner who have never even considered having a contract aspect about their manpower. The concept of bringing someone on a temporary basis is still seen rather negatively so I think it's about educating the companies.
What trends are you observe in the offering of Contract Solutions?
Dan: I've consistently observed a requirement for flexibility, we have to work with speed. I do see the need for continuous adaptability, and within that, there is a lot of importance put on cost-effectiveness and that is a learning curve within itself for our clients.
Taiwan, for example, is a misunderstood place to do business right now. There is a lot of investment coming into the country from Renewable Energy and even Conventional Power. But in terms of understanding contracting manpower, what the social security looks like and what the labour laws look like there, that is something that requires further education on how to do things properly. And that applies to many other locations like Japan, Korea or elsewhere.
A lot of the countries are seeking either a localisation of talents - so for us, it's about finding solutions to attract national talents from overseas. Or for new implementations like Offshore Wind, for example, there is a need for talents from overseas, especially from Europe; so on our end, it's about offering solutions that allow finding the right talents, providing immigration and all of that with the most effective costing.
What solutions are you working on at the moment and what problems are they solving?
Dan: For a number of companies having identified a strategic interest in entering new countries there is a realisation that to win projects, putting together EPCs contracts as well as costings, the need for an in-country setup is essential. But the risk remains and as such cost-effectiveness comes first. From our side, it's about how do we enter the conversation earlier and make sure that we are able to put together solutions for their projects with the right talents for the right costs.
A lot of the solutions we are working on now are more front-end oriented with experts consulting with new businesses for a period of time or commercial individuals leading project teams. We then also have solutions where we are working directly with the business to establish a fully compliant in-country entity, aiding with payroll, taxation, and employment contract in-country. That's where we differentiate ourselves as we are able to give a more rounded solution to clients, rather than giving a one-size-fits-all answer, giving them the opportunity to utilise our services right from the point of inception for a project until the execution phase and beyond with speed and cost-effectiveness.
What challenges are you coming across in implementing those solutions across the Energy and Tech industries?
Dan: Often the challenge in implementing Contract solutions is cost-effectiveness, not only for the client but also for us. That is one of the reasons we try to be involved as early as possible, in order to educate and to give a fair understanding of what it really looks like in their specific context, whether it is in Offshore Wind or Software Engineering for example.
Aside from that, accessing the right talents and moving them across geographies is our second challenge. We ensure that we are active, involved in the relevant sections of the markets and have an in-depth understanding of its trends. Sometimes companies are not only facing manpower problems, and our specialist approach allows us to tap into our network to connect them with other businesses within the industry to find the right solutions. It's not necessarily about us always being the solution-provider, sometimes it's about us creating connections to achieve success; that pushes us to look at the bigger picture and be adaptable rather than provide a recruitment-limited solution.
What would you want a business coming across NextWave Partners to know about the Contract Solutions we can offer?
Dan: I'd want them to understand that headhunting, success-methods recruitment is what we do and we are good at that. We are very accessible to a multitude of individuals across the different sectors that we focus on. We do provide that contract and manpower piece, and we are there to give them an understanding of what the right solutions would look like to facilitate their projects across Energy and Technology. We can be flexible and tailor our solutions to their specific needs, there are different areas we are able to approach and support accordingly. We want to aid companies to make the entirety of their business flexible rather than just one pain point piece of it.