Lord Sugar's business partner becomes first winner of The Apprentice to reach £1m profit

Ricky Martin with his business partner Lord Sugar

  • Former winner of The Apprentice and CEO of Hyper Recruitment Solutions (HRS) Ricky Martin leads company to a pre-tax profit of over £1m

  • HRS set to turn over £10m in the 2018 calendar year

  • Projected turnover for the next HRS financial year (July 2018 - June 2019) is £14m

Crowned winner of The Apprentice in 2012, and following the investment from Lord Sugar, Hyper Recruitment Solutions (HRS) was founded focusing on mid-level and senior recruitment in STEM industries globally; and today announces huge success, reaching the £1m profit mark.

HRS turned over a staggering £8m in the 12 months up to June 2018, achieving a 106% growth on profit and a 90% growth on turnover. Following on from the previous year’s 34% growth on profit and 59% on turnover. In the past 12 months alone, HRS has broken all company records on both sales and profit whilst managing to restructure and expand.

With two new locations in Manchester and Edinburgh alongside the founding company site based in Essex, the successful business now boasts 50 employees across the business. The company’s rapid expansion has resulted in a newly formed internal training academy together with focus on recruitment development, showcasing employee retention and return on investment in the first 12 months, snowballing from 30% to 80%. The expansion of staff by 50% has proved to be HRS’s most expensive, yet most successful year to date.

With continued success in mind, HRS have big plans for the next two years, looking to continue growth as the leading recruitment partner for science industries across the UK as well as a plan to focus on developing the businesses presence and offering across Europe.

Ricky Martin, CEO of Hyper Recruitment Solutions, says: “I couldn’t be prouder of the whole team at HRS who have got us to where we are today. To have grown from a company of just one back in 2012 to a business with 50 staff across 3 major UK cities, that makes a difference to so many people, is remarkable.”

Lord Sugar commented: “Investing in Ricky was a no-brainer, his understanding of the recruitment industry combined with his passion for business has resulted in the success Hyper Recruitment Solutions sees today. Being the first Apprentice winner to hit the £1m pre-tax profit mark is just the start, I know the future is bright for HRS going forward.”

HRS further plan to reinvest the business profit into talent at the business, growing their specialist workforce and continuing to provide the training and development needed to maintain their standards of employing the most professional and ethical recruiters in the industry.

Mr Martin added: “Money has always been secondary to changing lives in my eyes, however to do so and become the first winner of The Apprentice to break the £1m profit milestone in a single company year, is a huge success and I couldn’t be more thrilled!”

Making strides in the recruitment world, HRS ensures they give back to communities proving they’re not solely in it for profit. The business currently partners with charities Jeans for Genes, Alzheimer’s Society and Apps 4 Good which all make a difference to the sectors they recruit for, namely science, technology and engineering.

Mr Martin continued: “The reason Lord Sugar invested in to my business idea is because I was not just a recruiter. I was somebody who wanted to support talent in a specialist sector, which makes a real difference. It’s this passion for doing the right thing that has seen HRS go from strength to strength; and is why our financials have followed suit!”

Visit Hyper Recruitment Solutions >

What Can Job Interviewers Ask?

The questions you're asked during a job interview should mostly focus on your experience and qualifications. It also gives you and your prospective employer a chance to get to know one another.

What a job interview shouldn't be is an opportunity for the interviewer to ask lots of probing personal questions. In most cases, it's illegal for employers to make hiring decisions based on protected characteristics such as age, race, sexuality, and so on. By extension, it's usually not appropriate to ask about these things in an interview setting.

Sadly, just because it's not allowed doesn't mean that people don't do it. Hyper Recruitment Solutions conducted a survey of 1,000 hiring managers and 1,000 jobseekers, and a stunning 85% of interviewers admitted to asking inappropriate questions in job interviews.

Here's a closer look at some of the subjects that should remain off-limits for interviewers...


Age

Example: What year were you born?

Interviewers are not allowed to ask you your age or date of birth. You also don't have to include this information on your CV if you don't wish to.

55% of the interviewers we surveyed admitted to asking candidates when they were born. 60% stated that they considered this an 'acceptable' question.


Children & Pregnancy

Example: Have you got any plans to start a family?

It's illegal to make hiring decisions based on whether or not the candidate has children and/or plans to have a child in the future. Paid maternity/paternity leave is a right, and employers can't exclude candidates who wish to become parents just because they don't want to grant it. Already being a parent should not be a barrier to getting a job either.

That being said, our survey found that 40% of employers think it's acceptable to ask if a candidate is planning on taking maternity/paternity leave, while 54% find it acceptable to ask whether the candidate has any children already.


Gender & Sexuality

Example: Are you a man or a woman?

Your sexual orientation and gender identity are personal matters that should not have any bearing on your ability to do your job.

In most cases, it is illegal for employers to ask about your sex or your sexuality (although exceptions may be made for positive action schemes, e.g. an initiative to hire more LGBT workers).


Health & Disabilities

Example: Are you physically fit and healthy?

In our survey, 53% of hiring managers admitted to asking the question above. But it's illegal to ask questions about a candidate's health before offering them a job.

Employers in certain industries may require workers to pass a physical exam before starting work. Crucially, though, this should not be part of the recruitment/hiring process - any necessary health checks can only take place once the candidate has been offered the job.


Marital Status & Relationships

Example: Are you in a relationship?

As with gender and sexuality, one's marital status generally has no bearing at all on their suitability for a job. And yet 51% of interviewers we surveyed admitted to asking candidates whether they're married / in a relationship!


Religion

Example: Will you need time off for religious holidays?

It's unlawful to discriminate against someone based on their religious beliefs, so questions about faith should be off-limits at all times during job interviews.

Unfortunately, our survey indicated that just 18% of hiring managers understand that it's illegal to ask questions like 'Will you need time off for religious holidays?' 39% said it was inappropriate, but not illegal, while 43% felt that this question was acceptable.


Where You're From

Example: Where were you born?

Questions like 'Where were you born?' and 'Where's that accent from?' may seem innocuous enough, but again, they're not appropriate for an interview environment. Sadly, a large number of interviewers think these questions are acceptable - for instance, 47% of those surveyed stated that it's acceptable to ask the origin of a candidate's accent.


More useful links from HRS:

Outdoor Science Jobs

A degree in science doesn't mean that you have to spend your whole career sitting around in a lab all day long.

If you love science but prefer working outdoors, there are still plenty of possibilities for you to explore! Here are some outdoor science jobs that could be perfect for a person like you:

  • Environmental Scientist – An environmental scientist studies the effects of human activities on the world around us. They do this by conducting tests and analysing data as a means to both prevent and solve environmental problems. They gather samples and data in the field, then perform tests in a lab. As a result of increased pressure on governments and industries to minimise the harmful effects that their activities have on the world, the demand for this type of work is currently higher than ever.

  • Ecologist – An ecologist's job is to study ecosystems, the distribution of organisms, and the relationship between those organisms and their environment. They tend to focus on a particular subject area such as marine, freshwater or terrestrial ecology.

  • Geologist – The role of a geologist is to study processes of the earth (such as floods, earthquakes and landslides) and to survey land and produce safe building plans. They also investigate precious materials - such as minerals, metals, oils, water and natural gas - and come up with ways to extract them. A geologist is concerned with changes that occur over time such as land formation and climate change.

  • Biologist – The job of a biologist is to study organisms (such as bacteria, humans and animals) and their relationship with the surrounding environment. This helps us to better understand how the organism's body operates and how external factors impact each organism. Using basic research methods, a biologist will work to prove or disprove theories about how organisms work, as well as contributing to the discovery of medicinal advancements such as developing new fruits and vegetables that are less prone to nuisances and pests.

  • Patent Attorney – A patent attorney's job requires both scientific and legal knowledge, focusing on the protection of technology through the obtaining of patents. As a patent attorney, you will assess whether inventions are new and innovative, lead individual inventors or organisations through the process required to obtain a patent, and then act to impose inventors' rights if patents have been impeded.

This is just a sample of the many available science jobs that are (mostly) based outside of the traditional lab setting.

Here at Hyper Recruitment Solutions, we strive to help every individual find their perfect science role, whether that be in a lab or the great outdoors. For career advice and job-hunting guidance, please do not hesitate to contact us today - or use the link below to view our latest scientific vacancies.

Browse All Current Jobs >


Scientist Quiz

Clinical Science Jobs

The role of a clinical scientist is extremely important. They are responsible for the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of a wide range of illnesses, medical conditions and diseases.

As a clinical scientist, you’ll more than likely find yourself working within a laboratory environment, undertaking complex data analysis and utilising sophisticated software to analyse tests and results. You will work as part of a team containing a variety of specialist skill sets, such as doctors, nurses and biomedical scientists who offer professional advice, interpretation of medical results and appropriate testing methods. All of these play a fundamental role in research and the development of new drugs.

Browse our latest clinical science jobs here, or read on to find out more about this line of work.

Roles

Within the laboratory, a clinical scientist may specialise in a variety of different areas, such as:

  • Microbiology – This is the study of microbes such as viruses and bacteria, conducted to aid in the diagnosis, control and prevention of diseases and infections.

  • Genomics – The study of genetic mapping and DNA sequences to enhance the early diagnosis and inherited traits and diseases.

  • Blood Sciences – Studies focus on the chemical processes within living tissues and cells such as proteins and DNA.

  • Transplant Sciences – Involves ensuring that donated organs are correctly matched to recipients and working to reduce immune-rejection.

Each of these specialist subjects involves various activities and responsibilities. Depending on your chosen area of work, duties could include researching, developing and testing new approaches for diagnosing and treating conditions; creating and following protocols and quality control methods to ensure reliable and accurate results; or interpreting results and creating reports for colleagues to provide patients with therapeutic, diagnostic and prognostic information, as well as treatment options.

What you’ll need to be a clinical scientist

Qualifications

In order to become a clinical scientist, you will need:

  • A degree in life sciences, engineering, physics, or related to medicine
  • The completion of the 3-year NHS Healthcare Scientists Training Programme (STP)
  • Registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC)

Skills & Abilities

Obviously, clinical science workers require certain specific skills and abilities in order to perform successfully. The most important competencies include:

  • The ability to demonstrate strong experimental and analytical skills
  • Incredible attention to detail
  • The ability to be thorough and present findings in a coherent manner
  • The ability to work well within a team and communicate effectively
  • The ability to work under pressure
  • The ability to interpret information in a precise and accurate manner

The clinical science industry is a complex and ever-changing field that requires the very best individuals in order to move forward. We at Hyper Recruitment Solutions are very experienced clinical science recruiters, and we have a great passion for helping scientists find their perfect roles.

Use the links below to learn more about the clinical science industry, or to apply for clinical vacancies online.

Clinical Science: Learn More >

View & Apply for Clinical Science Jobs >

The gender gap present in STEM careers is a persistent one. While other industries have seen the balance between men and women begin to improve, the shortage of women within STEM continues to prevail with women making up only 14.4% of STEM workers in the UK. So, why aren’t there more female scientists? It’s not an easy question to answer, and a number of in-depth studies examining the STEM gender gap have reached the same resounding (yet unsatisfying) conclusion: it’s complicated.

To really comprehend the gender gap in STEM careers, we need to look at multiple strands, ranging from socialisation to confidence. The following 3 reasons can help us understand the gender gap in STEM fields (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).

1. Socialisation & Gender Stereotypes

Gender roles are generally understood to be the associative qualities, abilities and behaviours we link to a person’s gender. From colour-coded toys (pink for girls, blue for boys) onward, the divide between male from female starts at a young age. So how does this socialisation affect the gender gap in STEM industries?

Well, one study found that by the age of 6, girls are already 52% more likely to associate being 'really smart' with boys rather than girls.

These preconceived notions of intelligence, as well as the idea that there are 'girl subjects' and 'boy subjects', are bound to have a knock-on effect on the number of girls even considering pursuing STEM academically. The impact of this is reflected in university stats; in the USA, for instance, just 35% of STEM graduates are female.

2. Confidence

Confidence may be a key factor in understanding why there aren’t more female scientists. It is human nature to follow that you believe is most likely to end in success. There is a wealth of evidence to indicate that, once you remove social factors from the equation, there is no significant qualitative difference in scientific capability between the sexes – so the male majority in STEM fields can't simply be chalked up to innate scientific ability.

However, males generally display a higher level of confidence in their own scientific competence. This is a likelier explanation for the male-dominated workforce within the science industry.

3. Misconceptions & Disadvantages

It seems that there are a high number of women with the ability to pursue a science-based career who – for whatever reason – don’t choose to go in that direction. Even when women qualify to work within scientific fields, the turnover and drop-out rate of women in STEM fields remains high.

This may be partially explained by some of the misconceptions that surround the STEM industry, as well as the very real disadvantages that some women face. Childcare and maternity leave, for example, are frequently cited as deterrents for women who might otherwise have been interested in pursuing a career in science. Many countries aren't very accommodating towards women who require maternity leave, and this - combined with the general feeling that such a male-dominated industry will not be understanding about maternity requirements - can put female scientists off in a big way.

We hope this blog has helped you to understand some of the reasons why there aren’t more female scientists currently working in STEM industries. This gender gap isn’t an unchangeable state of affairs – many organisations are already working hard to get more girls interested in science and technology from a young age, and this hopefully means that there’ll be an influx of female scientists in the near future. Every little helps, and every woman who enters the STEM industry closes the gender gap a little bit more.

If you’re looking to start a career in STEM, you'll find science, technology and engineering job listings right here on the HRS website.

Browse all current vacancies >

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