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Bond bound for success following Voyager acquisition


Where did it all start for John Doupe?

I started my career as an IT Professional in the 80’s working as a mainframe operations analyst for companies like Hibernian Insurance and Barclays Bank. Although I enjoyed the technical work by the late 80’s I really wanted to use my technical skills and knowledge in a more commercial role. I put my CV out there and was quickly offered a job as a Recruitment Consultant with an agency in London called Monroe Computer Services as their mainframe specialist, I’ve never looked back.

After what now seems like the blink of an eye, I’d stepped in and out of one Recruitment role, and ended up as a Director at The Marlborough Group, which became the largest Recruitment Company in Ireland. With a focus on delivering a quality, traditional albeit manual service The Marlborough Group experienced unprecedented growth and started to look at a partial flotation to fund the growth further. 
Despite the positive press, I could see that cracks were beginning to form and just a few weeks before The Marlborough Group floated, I took control of my future and created Bond Personnel.

I’d helped create my biggest competitor! (but they only lasted a few more years before going into receivership)

Traditional Recruitment values, tough competition, high running costs and an uber competitive Micro-Niche market.

Key to the success of Bond Personnel was hiring Recruiters with a high level of technical expertise, but with a passion for offering a top class Recruitment Service – they’re hard to find…

As a Search Consultant I put my own principles into action and proactively headhunted some of the most talented Recruiters Ireland had to offer.

Based on solid foundations Bond Personnel grew to a team of circa 30 people with 4 branches at our peak. At that time our growth was only curtailed by our ability to fund that growth. Fibre, Broadband, email and web connectivity was in its infancy and so getting the data to the fingertips of my Recruiters was expensive and slow. We had a plethora of manual systems including 3rd party CV parsing tools, off the shelf CRM systems, outlook, excel, websites, Resourcing teams, Managers, KPIs and a bunch of non-recruiters filling the gaps.

Whilst we retained the ability to deliver a quality service, we’d become slow, laden with costs, IT headaches and our billing cycle was like a roller coaster. At that time only 50% of staff held a Recruitment target and focus.

Stepping out of the dark and into the light – Voyager Infinity SaaS

Whilst exploring the ability to move my existing systems to the web and facilitate remote working for some staff, I received an opportunistic sales call.
I was introduced to Voyager Infinity SaaS during a 15-minute online demo, a web-based deployment of their flagship CRM, which then lead onto detailed demonstrations by 7 of the 100+ suppliers in the market.
Whilst most did little more than my existing CRM, Voyager had the technical edge.

Voyager was feature rich, had a focus on automation and promised a smooth migration process – I was doubtful, but trusted my research and placed the order.

How our Candidates and Clients benefit:

  • Recruitment is a simple business, but today’s market is uber competitive. We can now track relationships from cradle to grave – first contact to placement. With the best candidates typically employed, Infinity allows me to map the market and ensure yesterday’s applicants are not overlooked for tomorrows opportunities.
  • Schedule management reports – cover many things, but I’ve ensured Compliance, Deadlines, Conversion ratios and activity levels are tracked and shared without the need to run reports manually. We can now spot problems before they happen.
  • Voyager Infinity SaaS + soft phone = We’re always ready to help! – Facilitates a more complete service. Staff can now work from anywhere they like with all the information they need in one place – which also means Recruiters have access to the latest notes, emails and message. We’re much more joined up than before.
  • My Recruiters now focus on delivering their service, rather than logging their notes and activities from one system to another. “Voyager Infinity has given back my Recruiters at least 90 minutes of their day”
  • We offer a fast, professional and comprehensive service – and no longer need to pass on the traditional admin costs and delays to our customers.
  • We look forward, not back

Five features I just can’t live without:

  1. iResearch – Allows me to search multiple sources in one go. Now I search Linkedin, Job-Boards, Online CV databases and X-ray Search the web from one place. When I find someone I like I add them to Voyager with one click.
  2. iCapture – All CV’s, including online profiles are reviewed, matched to jobs, checked for duplicates and turned into candidate records in seconds
  3. CV Builder – Is amazing, and does what is says on the tin. It pulls information from the candidate record building my Bespoke CV template in seconds. With a click I can add a coversheet, terms of business and select an email template for my clients. I can now get professionally written, formatted CV’s from candidate to multiple clients in less than 5 minutes.
  4. ‘Automatic Follow-ups – guarantee a quality service’. A simple idea that really makes all the difference in today’s super-competitive market. I can schedule an automatic follow-up against any emails I send. E.G. CV’s sent to clients automatically get tagged with a follow-up in my diary for 48 hours later, adding a read receipt on the email is genius, you can even schedule the email to be sent at a time when you know the client is at their desk!
  5. Searching – It’s brilliant, you just need to see it. Skills, attributes, text – all ordered into a ‘best match’ – think “google search for people”.

Four things I didn’t really need to worry about:

  1. Voyager’s migration team ensured the transition was simple, pretty painless and that support was on hand during all stages of the process
  2. Remote Training – better than face to face: I staged the implementation of Voyager Infinity, we moved forward with bite-sized online training sessions. Training was professional, concise and tailored to our requirements. Whilst onsite was available, it wasn’t required.
  3. People LOVE using Infinity SaaS, and use it fully. The database is no longer something to update when we have time or after the event, it’s something we ‘Live in’. The Voyager Infinity platform allows us to post jobs to job-boards, review applicants, format CVs, arrange meetings, send Outlook invites, SMS, run reports and send placements to finance all from one place – we don’t leave Voyager – everything is tracked and logged.
  4. Bond was a professional business before we were introduced to Voyager Software and the Infinity SaaS platform, now we’re doing it faster, cheaper and with less pain.

One thing Voyager could do better:

“F1’ is a great idea. If you get stuck trying to create a template, run a report or have simply forgotten how to do something – just click F1. F1 is an internal portal for customers which has a plethora of video’s, QRG’s (Quick reference guides) and more – think ‘Voyager Wiki’. It’s a great idea, but as the MD I don’t want to read or watch a video,, I expect to talk to a human – so call their 0800 support line. It’s not really a criticism of the F1 feature, some of my team love it, but for me I expect a personal service, which to date has been exemplary.”

Excluding my competitors I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Voyager to any Recruitment Agency looking to maximise time, streamline processes and push the business forward.

Voyager Infinity and Voyager Mid-Office are software solutions that make Recruiters’ lives easier. Voyager Infinity is a CRM used by thousands of recruiters globally to source, nurture and maintain the relationships with their clients and candidates, and Mid-Office manages the entire Pay and Bill process (IR35 ready).