12 months ago, Danny Broderick made the big decision to leave England and head Down Under to Australia, swapping the bright lights of London for the beaches and sunshine of Sydney.
A year and a promotion later, we got Danny to reflect on the whirlwind that followed, asking some questions we thought might benefit fellow recruiters pondering the switch.
Danny: This was a joint decision between me and my partner. We had been living in London for about 4 years and had started to get the itch to try something new.
I have only ever lived in cities and so the appeal to change London for something similar wasn’t really there...in comes Sydney.
I had a few friends and some ex-colleagues that had moved across and I had been a backpacker here many years prior. They were all living on or near beaches, heading up to the mountains or national parks for camping, and having been a city boy most of my life I was very jealous - the only piece of green near me was Clapham Common!
Another appeal, aside from the beaches, was that I didn’t have to sacrifice too much of the ‘City life’. I still have the option of many great restaurants and bars if I want those things.
So ultimately Sydney gave me a great balance of nature and nightlife, and of course the weather!
Danny: I was fairly lucky in this regard. MMK were a competitor of my old business in London and a few ex-colleagues had actually ended up at MMK Sydney, so I had a few people I could speak to prior.
I knew they were a good business...we had lost a few good people to them, but had also pinched a few good operators from them too!
I knew they had offices in Ireland, the UK and Australia, but I wasn’t aware they had operations in numerous other countries including Tokyo, Hong Kong and Singapore.
Danny: Interviewing from the UK was always going to present challenges, especially with the time difference being 11 hours at that point in the year!
However, modern tech being the way it is, Skype calls were easy to arrange and provided a good opportunity to have face to face conversations with my Manager, the MD and the wider team.
The whole process was fairly smooth and by the end I felt I had a good understanding of the team, business and the opportunity/role that was being presented.
Being introduced to the wider team certainly helped. It gave me the opportunity to get a feel of the culture and helped build a picture of what I would be stepping into.
Danny: The first 6 months was pretty smooth. The team was very welcoming and I had the opportunity to sit with various leaders across the business which gave me an insight to the wider business outside of my immediate team and some good tips for approaching the Sydney market.
When I landed, I arrived to find a busy desk and some roles to work on almost immediately. By the end of my second week I had placed my first contract role so I really hit the ground running.
There were several social events that happened in those first 6 months too which allowed me to speak to other teams and embed pretty quickly.
Danny: Recruitment companies can sometimes feel pretty ‘old school’ and Draconian in the way they operate - KPIs, inflexible working arrangements and success being measured by how long you are in the office.
MMK are certainly not that. I work most days in smart casual as opposed to a suit (unless in meetings), have the opportunity to work remotely from home and have been given the autonomy to manage my own desk and time.
I haven’t been given a single KPI since being here.
That was a big factor in my decision of choosing MMK, I was sold this at interview and it’s nice to see one year in that it has rung true every step of the week. Who wouldn’t want to work from home with a view like this?!
Danny: I think one of the biggest challenges is actually committing to the move. Handing in your notice, finishing up your lease and booking your flights. Once that has happened you start to let the excitement build and everything is easy from there.
The other challenge for me was accepting a role without seeing the office or knowing too much about locations in the city. However, as mentioned earlier, MMK had done all they could to make sure I felt I had already met the team through all the conversations they had set up.
The visa process is also slightly time consuming and personally mine took a little longer than expected but all in all, it was fairly smooth.
Danny: I have felt pretty welcomed from day one, certainly in my immediate team.
Everyone is friendly, and many had made a similar decision to up sticks and move, so they understood the position I was in and were keen to help me settle.
There were a number of opportunities to get to know my team through team nights out, and the wider business at company wide end of quarter celebrations.
From a work perspective, I have always felt supported. Whether that was through Training sessions with senior leaders in the business or through collaboration with my team or the wider business - there are even company wide initiatives to promote cross-sell and collaboration between teams.
I was also given clear promotion targets and the autonomy to deliver to them which led to a promotion fairly quickly.
All in all, my first 12 months here has been a great experience, I have had success at work, made some good friends at MMK and settled into life down under.
I would definitely recommend it to anyone debating making the move.
If, like Danny, you are considering your next career steps in recruitment, whether internationally or locally within Sydney, reach out to Steph Newth for a confidential discussion about opportunities to join the wonderful #TeamMMK: +61 2 8986 3102 / firstname.lastname@example.org