Concrete Conversation with Mathew Dittmann

We spoke with Mathew Dittmann, Co-Founder of Kellmann Recruitment, who is a new recruitment consultancy that operates within the construction supplies/builders merchant market.

IM What is your role within Kellmann Recruitment?
MD I am Director and Co-founder, although I don’t really like that term!
IM And did you set up the company by yourself?
MD No, I set it up with my business partner Tom. We have been good friends since school.
IM And have you worked together before?
MD No, we hadn’t actually, we both moved to Birmingham to start our recruitment careers and lived together but working for different companies.
IM So what type of structure do you adopt in Kellmann Recruitment, do you have other managers?
MD There’s 7 of us now and we all manage our own desks, but no business managers as such. We’re still relatively new as a business but we want our hires to have the opportunity to work towards this. As we grow we’ll need leaders in the business and that’s the opportunity for them.
IM When you set up the company did you have a pipeline at all?
MD Not so much a pipeline no. All the work we do is permanent, we are fortunate that we have a lot of connections within the industry.
IM So, your current headcount is seven, do you remember your first hire for your own company was that an odd experience?
MD Yeah it was, we did that in February, most of the hires we have made have been people we know from the recruitment sector, either we have worked with them or know them personally. We have been fortunate in the sense they wanted to come join us and felt comfortable that we know what we are doing. It was a bit strange at first but it was also exciting – I’ve managed people previously and we have a pretty relaxed environment so that helps!
IM And what current technology do you use to make your hires?
MD We use the standard job boards but we don’t rely on them, LinkedIn is a powerful tool for us, not just from a candidate perspective but also a business development perspective. It’s useful for growing our brand and getting our name out there.
IM Was that a big challenge when you set up the company having a low presence in the market to start?
MD I think that’s always a challenge, but we’ve managed our growth pretty organically by proving ourselves which is good.
IM How do you see the next five years, not just for your business but the industry as a whole, especially regarding Brexit and the skills shortage?
MD I’m not particularly worried, it’s always difficult to plan ahead with these things, you never know what’s going to happen. I think with Brexit it hasn’t happened yet so we don’t know what the outcome will be. With the pound falling that has impacted our clients a lot especially those that import a lot of products from the EU. Many work to tight margins and so the first thing they look at is their recruitment spend. The housing shortage has propped up the market somewhat and I can’t see that changing for a while.
IM Do you have dress down days at work?
MD Not as such, we just dress for the day! I don’t believe you need to be sat in the office in a suit all day if you don’t want or need to be. If you’re out on a meeting then you present yourself appropriately, but I’m sat at my desk in jeans and a t-shirt.
IM What was the last book you read?
MD I’ve just started the Elon Musk book actually, which has been really interesting.
IM Do you support a sports team?
MD I’m more of a Motorsports person, F1 and MotoGP. I’m quite a big Lewis Hamilton fan! A lot of the lads here like football.
IM To finish what are your top tips to scale a recruitment business?
MD Set realistic targets. I think it’s quite easy as a new business to think about all the money you could be earning and you set your targets to over a million pounds a year, but you have to be realistic. The more planning you do the more successful you’ll be. Set yourself milestones throughout the year that’ll help you to achieve your targets – focus on building incrementally or you can get far too ahead of yourself!
IM Well thank you, Mathew, for your time, have a lovely day.
MD And you Isabel, take care.

To find out more about Kellmann Recruitment visit their website:

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