Indie Recruitment enters the Hunter and targets the small business and youth sectors

Change is good: Indie Recruitment CEO Jacqueline Garrett says the fact she's held many jobs stands her in good stead as a recruitment leader.

Change is good: Indie Recruitment CEO Jacqueline Garrett says the fact she's held many jobs stands her in good stead as a recruitment leader.

JOB hopping is not a dirty term in the career stakes. 

So says Jacqueline Garrett, founder of Newcastle recruitment newcomer Indie Recruitment, which specialises in working with small business owners and assisting youth.

“Recruiters who see [job hopping] as a negative are not looking forward, they need to catch up on what the workforce is doing,” she says of the increasing casualisation of the jobs sector and the slow death of “safe” jobs. 

Twelve months ago Belmont-raised Garrett, who “failed at school” only to return as a mature age student and claw back a UAI of 96.9, quit her job at a Job Network provider, frustrated by the mentality and constraints of finding work for the jobless. 

“It was all about meeting their KPIs to keep their federally funded contract, very little ‘one on one’ or real help available,” she says. 

Within two days she’d registered the Indie name, determined to make a difference to youth unemployment regionally.

She also believed her job-hopping past – she says she has worked in more than 30 jobs in 18 industries including retail, administration, hospitality, jewellery design, project management and communications – is her trump card. 

“I have a skill that few people have and that is career fluidity – I am agile and hold many transferrable skills and above all else I know how to get hired,” she says.

“As the workforce becomes more casual and replaced with automated services, the workplace and the jobs available will change dramatically and people will require the skills that I have been honing for the past 20 years.

“Finally my so-called perceived ‘weakness’ of job hopping has become my strength.”

Garrett believes in what she calls the “unique skill stack”, or individual skill set a person has that is not just their career credentials but also their life experience as well. 

She says what makes Indie different is it’s focus on the client – “Anyone who has dealt with a recruiter will tell you they feel like they are just a number”- and her decision to charge a competitive flat fee rather than the standard percentage of the wage of the person placed in a job. 

“We only work with small business and we look for people with the X-factor who’s going to meet the X-factor of the small business,” she says. 

Indie Recruitment also works with youth: Garrett volunteers in mentoring programs for high school, teaching them everything from skills agility to appropriate social media use. She is also a part of the Empower Program supporting female students at the University of Newcastle. 

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