Fay Wallis: Welcome to HR Coffee Time. It's great to have you here. I'm your host, Fay Wallis, a career and executive coach with a background in HR and I'm also the founder of Bright Sky Career Coaching. I've made HR Coffee Time especially for you to help you have a successful and fulfilling HR and People career without working yourself into the ground.
This episode is a special one for me and for HR Coffee Time. If you've been listening to the show for a while, you might know that one of my goals for this year was to find a sponsor for the podcast, and I didn't want it to be any old sponsor. Because after being approached by a couple of companies about sponsorship completely out of the blue last year, that just didn't feel like quite the right fit, I really wanted to make sure it would be a sponsor that had a product or a service that I believed in and would feel right for the podcast and it would feel right for you. So I'm really excited to be able to introduce you to HR Coffee Time's first ever sponsor. The company is called Presentus. And it's founder and CEO is Tansel Omer.
I've known Tansel for several years, and you may even remember him. You've met him before when he was the second-ever guest on the show back in episode four, which was called, "Finding your next HR job, key tips from an HR Recruiter". Since he was last on the show, he has set up Presentus, which is a brand new recruitment platform that approaches recruitment in a really different way, which is why its strapline is, "recruitment redefined."
You're about to meet him, to hear him talking through what Presentus is, how it works, and how it can help you. If you're looking for your next role or you have vacancies at work that you need to fill, I really hope that you're going to enjoy hearing from him.
Welcome back to the Show Tansel, it's so fantastic to have you here.
Tansel Omer: Thank you Fay. It's great to be back and congratulations on creating such fantastic content and building an amazing audience since I first came on, which I was trying to remember actually what episode number was it that I came on originally?
Fay Wallis: It was episode four. You were my second-ever guest on the show, I was way too scared to ask anyone who I didn't know if they'd like to come on the show.
And you were really kind in having faith in me by coming on. And we're here today to talk about your exciting new business, which is called Presentus. You've set it up since you were last on the show, and it uses a brand new recruitment model that you have invented. There's no one else that I'm aware of who is doing recruitment in this way, so it's very exciting because I remember you first talking to me about the idea absolutely ages ago, and I know just how much hard work time and effort has gone into it.
So before I ask you to talk us through exactly what it is, how it works, and how it's different, it would be great to hear where your inspiration for it came from.
Tansel Omer: Okay. Yes. Absolutely. So if I just start with a little bit of my background. I've been in recruitment now, I think this is my 19th year.
12 of those years has been working for some of your more established corporate recruitment businesses like Badenoch and Clark and Barclay Meade. About seven years ago, I decided to set up my own business - The Talent Place. And yeah, I didn't really have any grand plans at the time to hire people or I was just kind of enjoying taking all the bits that I loved about recruitment doing.
Retained recruitment for, for clients that I'd had some really good relationships with. And I took the opportunity to do my ILM level seven coaching qualification. I know we've talked about that in the past as well. And the plan sort of just pre covid was to , offer a variety of recruitment and coaching related services to my lovely HR network.
And then Covid came along. Obviously with lockdown and everything recruitment went really, really quiet, especially within HR. But it did give me a chance to do loads of coaching and I know that we collaborated on a few things in, in that time as well, Fay. And it was really great to Coach some of the HR contacts that I had, especially as, you know, they were probably the ones who may have needed it more than others.
They would've been supporting loads of people within their businesses. And, they would've had their own personal challenges through lockdown too. So it was great to help some, really good people out then. So I, I guess , to answer your, your question then, Through those conversations and through the fact that so many great candidates were coming onto the marketplace.
A lot of the same sort of challenges and issues were, coming up with, some of the, contacts that I had, particularly when it came to them struggling to, find a new job, struggling to stand out from the crowd. And I had two well, I've still got two young kids, but they were even younger at the time.
They were one year old and a newborn. So you know, I didn't have a huge amount of time , to do other things, but I just spent some time thinking about Some of those challenges and an idea came into my head where I thought, well, perhaps there is something that there is room for in the marketplace that overcomes some of those challenges and some of those challenges exists for both employers and candidates.
And, so the, early ideas around Presentus were established then and over the last two years or so. We've developed those with, with the support of a, of a great team as well.
Fay Wallis: Okay, so now that we know where the inspiration came from, it would be great to hear a little bit more about the platform that you've created.
And obviously it can be interesting for people listening today if they are thinking about moving into their next HR role. But it can also be interesting for them if they are tasked with recruitment and are interested in learning about it from a recruitment perspective and how they might be actually be able to access it as a business to try and find the right people to fill their roles. So rather than cover both things at once, let's break them down into two things. Can you talk to us then by starting off talking about it, if you are in an HR or People role and you've got responsibility for recruitment in the organization you work for, how can Presentus help?
How is it different?
Tansel Omer: Yeah, sure. So if I sort of start off by giving a couple of quick examples as to some of those challenges that I've already alluded to. And then expanding from there. So first of all, I should say that Presentus is a direct recruitment platform. So we are really competing against other direct recruitment strategies, such as posting out job ads or using things like job boards, which all have a place.
But I think there are challenges with each of those areas. What Presentus isn't, is a sort of niche head hunting tool. So that's more your traditional search and selection agencies, similar to what we do at The Talent Place. So if, you had a requirement where you wanted a very specific niche skillset, then
you'd probably need to use one of those strategies as opposed to a direct recruitment strategy. So a couple of examples. If, for example, an employer wishes to recruit a HR Business Partner, with the job titles been so inconsistent within the HR industry.
You'll find that some companies pay Business Partners anything from 45k to 120k. So the problems that emanate from that kind of situation. So if you advertise a role on LinkedIn; you don't attach a salary, then the employer is going to attract hundreds of applicants. Because candidates just don't know what level the role is positioned at without a salary.
So what typically then happens is that the employer will then take longer to sift through those applications and then, you know, a week or two down the line, they're going to shortlist based on the same kind of challenge that they. Have in the sense that they don't know what salary level the candidate is at.
So whilst you know this process can work it is flawed and you get to a point where it takes maybe two or three weeks to set up interviews and by that point, maybe some of the best candidates have got snapped up. Maybe they're not at the right level. You might get lucky. But you know, you can see why
there are improvements that can be had from that. And then if I just give the example of a job board as well job boards are great. We use them again, they serve a purpose, but there is no qualification required to put your CV onto a job board. So, for example, I've got zero Finance experience.
But I could put myself on there as a Finance Director. I'd be picked up in those searches for whatever salary I'm looking for. Doesn't mean I'd get shortlisted, but it would just be an extra hurdle that direct recruiters would have to go through. So with that in mind, we decided to create something that was in the middle ground between using an agency and some of those direct recruitment strategies; the idea being that assess, qualify and place our best candidates into specific pools onto our Presentus platform. So what the benefits are to employers in that situation is that a pool, for example would consist of maybe 10 to 15 HR generalists in the 50 to 80 K bracket. So each candidate has satisfied certain criteria; has got a great CV in relation to that salary banding and is actively available. So a client can go into our platform, access that particular pool; look at 10 to 50 HR generalists that have been curated into that pool, knowing that they are high quality, ready to go and are at the right level.
So what we are saying, and if I've bring everything back to those two examples that I've, given you earlier, is that what you could do through an advert, which might take three weeks or so, you could achieve via Presentus in about three hours. And so there's a real cost and time and quality element to it too .
Fay Wallis: I'm just trying to visualize then what the platform might look like for someone who wants to use it, who works in HR or is an internal recruiter. So they think, "Okay, I have to hire a new person." I'm going to move away from us talking about HR for the moment, cuz I know that you too also look after.
Other roles as well. So let's say I need to hire a finance person. I go onto the platform and I'm looking for a Finance Director. So I put in finance director, I put the salary banding that I ideally want to pay, what the business can afford, and then what will happen? How will I get to see the candidates?
Exactly? How, can I make sure I'm not gonna suddenly be just shown hundreds and hundreds of CVs like you get if you're logging into a normal job board?
Tansel Omer: Sure. Okay. Good question. So yeah, I should say that it's not just HR candidates on the platform. There's Talent Acquisition, there's Finance, there's Procurement.
We're also looking to bring in IT, graduates, these are big areas of demand for our clients as well. But for now it's primarily HR, Talent Acquisition, Finance, and Procurement. So, to answer your question so clients or employers have access in a couple of different ways. You either, and this is the ideal scenario incorporate it within your
direct recruitment strategy and subscribe for the year, and you get access to all of the pools within Presentus. But there are variations on that because not every company has Procurement. Not every company has a huge demand. So with that in mind, we also have pay on demand options too. So depending on the nature of your access, let's say you've got access to a Finance Director pool. So you would go into, presumably I'm not a finance recruitment expert, but you'd presumably go into the 80k plus pool. And within that pool there'll be roughly 10 to 15 candidates that we have assessed as being the best available candidates in the marketplace. You'd go in, you'd be able to see those candidates.
In relation to like a list, you can click onto a profile. Each candidate will have completed some basic information in terms of company size, experience, industry experience. They can put a CV on there, they can put other supporting documentation on there. There's about me section and then, you know, what is quite unique about the platform as well, is that we encourage, although it's not mandatory each candidate to post a short video about themselves as well.
And the purpose of that video is, is really to get away from, you know, the stuff that's visible on the CV and really give the employer a feel of that person's personality. They can talk about something that's, you know, a bit more fun or, what gets them out in bed in the morning or why people love to work with them.
If a client then had an FD role, they would have access to all of those candidates. They could then contact them directly - however many they like. They can send them a message, they can send them a job description and they could say, look, you know, I'm recruiting for a FD role.
Would you be available for a chat? Tomorrow or in two weeks time. And then they would just carry that process out directly with the candidates. So that's how it would work.
Fay Wallis: Ah, you're bringing it to life perfectly Okay for me now. Thanks Tansel. I like the idea of the video, although I'm sure anyone who's thinking of registering on the platform because they're looking for a new role, might think, oh no, I have to record a video. It does add so much more to the application, doesn't it? And I know from before I became a coach and I worked in HR, I had responsibility for internal recruitment in one of my roles. And I vividly remember looking at someone's CV and then meeting them and thinking,
is this the same person? They just seemed so incredibly different to how they were conveyed in the CV. So I think that's a really nice touch, but probably what sounds like the most helpful and unique aspect of what you are talking about here is the fact that you're not going to be overwhelmed with loads and loads and loads of CVs, and actually they are all qualified, so you know that the quality of the candidates is really high.
Because I vividly remember when I was in that internal recruiter role, oh my gosh. Just getting hundreds of applications for some of the vacancies that we advertised for, and it was just overwhelming getting through every single CV trying to make sure that you were getting back to every person. Trying to make sure that you were shortlisting the absolute best possible people.
And I think you're also conscious when you are in that role that often the budget for that position is there because the organization knows how much money they're saving in recruitment agency fees by having an internal recruitment person. So you can feel this huge pressure that you have to be able to fill those roles.
And obviously you want to do a good job as well. But I think just using traditional job boards or just searching on LinkedIn if you have got a lot of roles, can be incredibly overwhelming. And I remember being incredibly relieved if my boss at the time, the People Director would say, oh, okay, Fay, this looks like we've got a really specialist role here.
Let's use a recruitment agency to help you out. So what you've created with Presentus really gives you a much more affordable option of having an experience that's far more similar to having a recruitment agency on hand, isn't it?
Tansel Omer: Yeah, I think so. I mean, that's what we're, we are trying to do. I mean, we are focusing on generalist roles where there's naturally a huge surplus of candidates in the marketplace.
So you know, Obviously we know that within the marketplace there are some amazing candidates. There are some, good candidates. There's average candidates, and then there's candidates that, just apply for, anything regardless of what the job title says. So, you know, what we are trying to do is, is.
Take away the pain. We're trying to take away the pain by basically filtering out and just working with, , the, the very best ones that are in the marketplace and almost like giving a long list. So that 10 to 15 number is a long list of candidates that you can work from. And hopefully within that you'll be able to find somebody really good very cost effective and a very quick way.
And then, yeah, the idea being that whatever your setup is within your business, whether you've got a extensive direct recruitment internal recruitment function or, or not you can then, use that time to spend on more niche roles that might be more critical to your business as well. So we, we hope that that comes through.
Fay Wallis: I'm sure that it will, and for anyone listening who'd like to have a demo of the platform and really get more of a feel for how it works, there is a special HR Coffee Time link that I'm going to pop in the show notes for anyone listening ready for you to use. It would be wonderful if you could use that particular link because it helps Tansel know how you found out about Presentus and it will help him hopefully realize that it's worthwhile being a sponsor of HR CoffeeTime. To find the show notes, just tap on the episode you're listening to. If you're listening on a podcasting app on your phone and scroll down. You'll see lots of writing sitting underneath the episode title and photo. That writing is the show notes. You can also find the show notes if you have any trouble at all, finding it on your podcasting app.
You can find them on the episode page of my website, which is Bright Sky Career Coaching. But now Tansel, it would be great if we could move on to learning about how Presentus is helpful, if you're a candidate who's looking for your next role. So for anyone listening who's thinking about moving on to their next HR or People role, how could Presentus be really helpful for them?
Tansel Omer: And just going back to that link that you've just mentioned, if you do use that link then you'll definitely be eligible for some kind of free trial or discount as a very valued HR Coffee Time listener.
Fay Wallis: Brilliant. Thank you for mentioning that. That's wonderful. So, okay, can I move you along now to talking about it from a candidate perspective? So anyone who is thinking of moving onto their next HR or People role, what would be the benefit of putting your CV on Presentus?
Tansel Omer: Hopefully through some of the the, comments I've already made, you would have a start to understand some of the benefits that might be apparent to candidates.
I mean, we've obviously focused on certain types of jobs that are generalist jobs where there's huge competition in the marketplace. And, we appreciate that and we really wanna help those candidates try and get noticed, stand out for the crowd, and really reward those that, and, put them to the forefront of a lot of employer's minds.
And there's a number of reasons for that. So obviously I'm bringing in a lot of my coaching background into this , as well through some of the stuff that we are gonna touch on later that we're providing to the community. But essentially what we felt was, was that with all of the various ways of getting jobs out there at the moment.
There wasn't anything really where a candidate could strive to get onto a pool and be almost, declared considered to be one of the best candidates in the marketplace.
And that's what we want the pause to ultimately be. You know, they want something for candidates to strive to get into. If we can. Ensure that that quality is consistent. Then employers will naturally, I think recognize that and gravitate more to the platform as well. So it's almost like a cycle that we're hoping to a, and you know, as, as I said earlier, if you're a candidate in that pool, and, and an employer wanted to hire someone.
Through Presentus, you'd only be one of 10 to 15 candidates as opposed to a hundred or so that might apply for an application. So if you get into that pool, then great. Then hopefully you're gonna have access to lots of jobs that aren't necessarily in the marketplace. And then there's a number of ways in which we are gonna help those candidates that are in those pools.
Fay Wallis: So now I'm intrigued. Do you know if you've made it into the special magic pool of top people?
Tansel Omer: Yeah, so I should say that we have a talent partner team that guide you through the process. So if you register your interest in, in being a member of the Presentus community and platform, then they would guide you through the process.
So we'd obviously make sure that your experience fitted with the pools that we. are populating. And then they would guide you through the various things that we need. And, there's a bit of AI as well involved. So when I talked a little bit about when a candidate completes their registration process there is a scoring system that helps us determine who has invested more time and created the best profiles. That includes things like the video includes how strong the CV is, includes how good the About me section is as well. And so the people that go into the platform are notified. But the ones that aren't necessarily able to make it straight away, then we provide them with the feedback.
We provide them with the tools to say, actually look. You're not quite ready at the moment for, for this reason. If you go away and improve your video or if you're able to improve your CV here's some guides to help you with that. Then please do come back and we'll support you to get back on.
Fay Wallis: I haven't realized that you have people in the team helping all of the candidates with loading up their information. I had just thought it would be a upload your cv, fill in these details, click "Join Presentus" so it sounds like there's a bit more to it than that.
Tansel Omer: Oh yeah, absolutely. And that team is headed by Ciara, who's, been with with me now for two years.
Started off as a Kickstarter by by the way, and, and now she's a senior talent partner. So that in itself is a, is a lovely story. But yeah, I mean we, we wanted to ensure that , it wasn't all down to automation. I think one of the big struggles within the recruitment space is that there's a lot of AI there's a lot of key words, et cetera.
We felt that it was important to have some human interaction in there from a supporting perspective, but also from an assessment perspective as well. Without going over the top.
Fay Wallis: I think that's brilliant. A really unique offering. It's such a nice feeling I think if you are looking for a role in knowing you've got that little bit of extra support, because I know from being a career coach and having helped so many people how daunting it can feel when you are looking for your next position.
All that self-doubt can really start to creep in and you can start to over worry about things like have you got your CV right? So having all that extra support and those resources sounds great. I know you've got even more support that you put in place once people are on the platform. Could you just talk us through what some of that looks?
Tansel Omer: Yeah. One of the things I'm really excited about is, is the Presentus community. So as I mentioned, we are producing career coaching guides. I've literally just commissioned our, marketing team to create like, I dunno, Even what's gonna be called yet, but some kind of ultimate Presentus career coaching guide.
And it will be something that, every person that registers with the platform will get, it'll be what to do when you're looking for a new job. Like how to elevate your CV to, how to prepare for interviews to how to onboard yourself. So we're just working that through at the moment, but that will be available soon.
There's already guides and stuff that we're able to give to candidates on the platform. We are running as you well know a coaching schedule as well for the community. So this is all free for the candidates by the way. So you've already spoken to our coaching community manager, Bec, who I think has already scheduled in the first quarter of coaching sessions for Q2.
And I think you are helping us with the first one at the end of April.
Fay Wallis: Yep. I'm going to be running a workshop about using LinkedIn and leveraging it to get your next role. So for anyone listening, if you want to come along to that workshop, you are very welcome to. If you've registered on the Presentus website, you'll get updated about it automatically, and I will quickly say that there is a separate special HR Coffee Time link for you to use if you are thinking of getting a new job and you would like to register.
On the Presentus platform. So I will also put that link in the show notes. So there are two links to look out for. One, if you'd like to use it for recruitment purposes, to hire talent into your organization. And then a separate one if you'd like to use it to find your next role.
Tansel Omer: And, and , in addition to some of those things , we know it can be a lonely place looking for a role.
So there's a Presentus community. We want people to potentially buddy up with each other, or, coach each other or mentor each other. So there's gonna be a. Things like that that we, we are planning to do. We've got community volunteering events with some of our charitable partners as well, where the community can get together and, and we'll be there too.
So there's a, there's a range of things that we're looking to do. , on top of all of that. I think it's a great opportunity to when we are populating the pools and put really good diversity on there as well, and, and give opportunities to people that may have struggled to get back into work as well.
You know, we, we've already spoken to some candidates that. One of which, , hasn't worked for a long time because of illness, but they've got a really solid background prior to that. And, and there was another lady that's been out of work for five years because she's raised a couple of kids and has struggled to get back in.
So again, we've got the ability to put some of those amazing people into the pools and, and, and get them more into the forefront so that they are visible to, to employers as well. So there's, there's loads we can do, there's loads in the pipeline. But ultimately, yeah, we, we, we we're there to support people and, and hopefully they'll get some value from the platform, whether they get a job through the platform or not.
Fay Wallis: Oh, I love the fact that you're putting all of that support in place, Tansel. It sounds great, and you'll have to let me know when you're doing the community volunteering programs. I'd love to get involved with that. That sounds fantastic.
Tansel Omer: More than welcome.
Fay Wallis: And now that we've taken a real deep dive into Presentus, we are getting towards the end of our time together today.
So can I ask you the question that I ask pretty much every guest who comes on the show, which is, "What is your non-fiction book recommendation for us today?"
Tansel Omer: All right, so I'm a bit more prepared than last time when you threw me with this. There's actually a couple that I'm reading simultaneously at the moment.
They're both kind of startup related. So I've got "The Lean Startup" by Eric Ries, I think. And that's really interesting because he created a software business, I think made loads of mistakes with product fit, et cetera. So he talks a little bit about putting things in place to evaluate, the product fit and stuff like that. Bit more sort of scientific analytical base. And in contrasting that, there's another book that I'm reading, which is called "Blitz Scaling" by Reid Hoffman, who I think founded LinkedIn. And, and so he's a bit more risk averse and is very much more focused around action before perfection, getting stuff out there.
Trying to dominate the market as soon as possible. So for us then, it's quite interesting having these two books because it's a balancing act between what we're trying to do with Presentus, because obviously, we're a brand new business.
And we have to take certain steps at a time. We can't do everything at once. Not everything is gonna be perfect to begin with, but we are hoping that when we go live with the MVP over the next week or two, that you know, the, the concept still comes through and it still does a really good job for people and then we can develop it from there.
Fay Wallis: And they are two books that we definitely haven't had recommended before, so it's great to have them.
Thank you for sharing them with us. And again, I will pop links to both of those in the show notes so that for anyone listening who wants to go and take a bit of a look at them, you can do that really easily. And that brings me onto the final question for today, which is for anyone listening who'd like to get in touch with you or learn more about the work that you do Tansel, what is the best way of them doing that?
Tansel Omer: So you can find me on LinkedIn Tansel Omer or happy to give my email address if that's appropriate, Fay?
Fay Wallis: Of course. You're very welcome to share your email address as well.
Tansel Omer: So it's firstname.lastname@example.org
Fay Wallis: Brilliant. And of course, as I've already said, there are two different links to the Presentus website that are in the show notes ready for you. So thank you so much for coming on the show today, Tansel, it's been wonderful to see you again.
Tansel Omer: Thank you very much Faye,
Fay Wallis: And thank you so much for sponsoring the show.
I really appreciate it.
Tansel Omer: Pleasure.