Record year for Leeds recruiter due to post-lockdown hiring boom

Leeds-based finance recruitment consultancy Headstar has reported record growth of 35% in its latest financial year, driven by a post-lockdown hiring boom in finance professionals.

The business, which recruits all areas of a finance team from entry level to CFO, experienced surging demand for its services in 2021, with growth-focused SMEs increasingly looking to recruit finance professionals to help guide them through challenging times.

As a result, Headstar achieved record revenues of £2,265,592, up £595,000 on the previous year, while its profits also grew by 80% year-on-year.

The business placed more than 200 people in finance roles across the UK last year and added an additional 79 clients, attracting a wide range of SMEs, as well as larger businesses including Capita, Eversheds and A-Safe.

2021 also saw the recruiter expand its own 18-strong team of recruitment experts and associate finance directors, making four appointments and three promotions – with the company planning to grow its team by a third in 2022 as it looks to ensure it’s best placed to meet growing demand for its services.

While all of its specialist recruitment and finance consultancy divisions saw a significant increase in demand in 2021, Headstar’s part-time and portfolio FD services performed exceptionally well, with businesses of all sizes seeking senior level finance expertise as they looked to grow.

The recruiter’s transactional finance division also saw a surge in demand following the end of the last lockdown, as employers looked to strengthen their finance functions through the hiring of credit controllers and payroll managers in particular.

Commenting on the current recruitment landscape and the company’s record performance, James Roach, managing director of Headstar, said:

“In the wake of a job market where vacancies reached record levels last year, competition for talented people is fiercer than ever, particularly in the finance sector.

“As a result, our mix of recruitment and finance consultancy services have never been more in demand, with businesses increasingly recognising the importance of having strong finance functions during these turbulent times.

“2022 has started strongly for us and we believe it will be our most successful year yet. We plan on adding six people to our talented recruitment team, ranging from consultants to heads of divisions, as well as expanding our portfolio FD team, as we look to ensure we’re better placed than ever to connect businesses with quality finance people.”

The business, originally known as Finance Directors Yorkshire, was established 35 years ago and has grown significantly in recent years, expanding its client and contractor base which consists of a wide range of UK SMEs, mainly based in Yorkshire, including PureGym, Mamas & Papas and Tile Giant. Alongside placing permanent and interim finance staff, Headstar also provides a range of consultancy services, designed and delivered by experienced finance directors, including turnaround support and part-time finance directors.

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