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// Your FirstPort Team

Getting to know…Melanie Harvey, Response Manager

Tell us about your role and how long you’ve worked for FirstPort
I head up Response, which is our internally-run recruitment agency supplying temporary and permanent cover to our sites in England and Wales – I joined FirstPort in May 2017.

What do you do in the first hour after you wake up?
I must confess that I always get up two hours before I need to in the morning. I always reach for a strong coffee first and then relax with my dogs before getting ready for the day.

What you like most about your job?
My job is very varied and no two days are alike! I am lucky enough to have quite a bit of autonomy in my role but it’s also good to know that I can reach out for support any time I need it. We meet (most recently virtually) interesting people from all walks of life and it’s great to be able to place colleagues in the business. Some of those colleagues will then become our recruitment contact for their site, and will use Response to fill their temporary and permanent staffing needs.

What challenges do you face?
I think that our immediate challenge is the increased number of people we have applying to our job adverts at this time. There are currently so many people looking for new roles and many of these people may have the right skills but can sometimes be overlooked as they don’t have the relevant experience. With this in mind, I would urge anyone applying for a role to clearly highlight how their skills are transferable.

What led you to take this opportunity?
I previously worked in sales agency recruitment for 23 years, having worked in the education, secretarial/administration and industrial sectors for the majority of that time. Most large companies had internal recruitment divisions and I decided that I would like to be a part of that! What appealed to me about FirstPort was that, in addition to their resourcing division, they also had an internally-run temp and perm agency based in London – so lots of variety.

What is your greatest achievement?
Coming into Response three years ago and shaping its reputation, while changing negative agency perceptions that some of the sites had at that time. Also, being known for doing a good job and having a wonderful team around me.

Who is your inspiration?
I try to be my own inspiration!
However, I had a wonderful MD and Regional Manager in my previous role who gave me a real belief in my abilities and always gave me more responsibility than I thought I could handle, which clearly wasn’t the case as they constantly liked to remind me …..and still do to this day!

What keeps you busy outside of work?
I have two large dogs (Rottweiler and German Shepherd) that keep me extremely busy! I show my German Shepherd – who has won many rosettes in her time in the ring!! I would like to show my Rotti but he is quite a naughty character and the only rosette he would ever win would be the ‘’make the judge laugh and cause mayhem’’ award.

What personal goal have you set yourself this year?
I gave up smoking in 2015 and have vaped ever since, but I would really like to give that up too this year if I could.

What is one thing that people may not know about you?
I have family in the music and film industry and have been lucky enough to have attended some quite interesting parties in my life so far! When I was in college I was at a party that Elton John was a also a guest at…I was tired and didn’t want to be there and it would seem, neither did he and we both fell asleep on a sofa in the lounge while the party went on around us – so I have actually slept with Elton in the very real sense!