Smart has invested £350,000 in its infrastructure over the past two years. With 1,000 flexible workers processed each week, a sophisticated IT system was needed to handle all transactions. There are plans to further develop a bespoke system, allowing clients and workers to log on via the Smart website and track their contracts. The website is a fully integrated customer relationship management system, allowing any contact with the client or worker to be tracked from appointment to the end of contract. Smart has continually planned to be one year ahead of its projected growth with its IT systems, meaning that the company would be able to handle any large contract instantly.
The company also puts staff first. The directors recognised that recruitment can be a high-pressured and demanding job, and wanted to make Smart a people-focused business. All staff are given SMART objectives and encouraged to take ownership and act on their own initiative. An annual training plan identifies training needs and ensures staff are developed to meet business needs. Alongside this is a commitment to improving working conditions for the temporary workers Smart places in jobs with clients. Traditionally agency workers had low motivation and commitment, in part due to the lack of rights and benefits they received. The result was a high level of churn, and increased costs for the businesses which employed them. The Smart model offers flexible workers not only employment rights such as holiday and sick pay, but added benefits and reward schemes.
Finally, Smart is developing innovative ideas and strategy in a stale market. The large, well-established agencies provide a one-size-fits-all approach to recruitment, rarely diverting from the tried and tested model of supplying workers to jobs as and when they come up, rather than taking time to match them to the right job. Taking away management hassles from the client mean that Smart can offer genuine value for money.