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Jan 2011 - An Interview with the VMA Group

VMA Group LogoPaul Thompson recently met up with Claire Tuffin of the VMA Group to get some feedback from a long-standing Voyager customer.

Q: For those that haven’t heard about VMA or Claire Tuffin can you offer us an insight please?

A: VMA Group is a specialist recruitment company focused on identifying current and future leaders in the Corporate Communications, Human Resources and Change Management sectors. We have grown considerably over the past few years developing practice areas to reflect the needs of the market. Around half of our consultants (including me) come from the professions they now recruit for giving them a market leading insight into the unique needs of each role and how skills can be truly transferable.

Our permanent business was founded over 30 years ago and our interim business over 10 years ago.  We have a strong track record of growth and delivery and intend to keep it that way!

Q: What factors did you take into account when reviewing the Recruitment Software on the market?

The recruitment software package we were using when I joined the business didn’t really provide the flexibility of use we were needing as we grew and certainly not the ability to use our database for the extensive marketing requirements we were making on it.  Voyager was known to a number of consultants and after research, trials and a number of meetings with other suppliers, it was decided to move the entire business to Voyager.

Q: How has recruitment changed in the last 5 years for VMA?

For us, it’s still about networking and relationship building but this needs to be monitored effectively which is why our choice of database software is of vital importance.  The Communications profession is growing and with it the number of candidates we are seeing

Q: You’ve expanded your operation over the last 5 years - What expansion plans do you have for the next 5 years?

Our three year plan is to at least double in size and geographical reach

Q: Clearly VMA have invested in their staff and technology – What plans do you have for the future?

Staff are our most important asset.  Identifying the right people for our business, training them and providing the very best tools for their trade is our main focus

Q: How has the Voyager solution aided you in delivering your services to your customers?

It has helped us bring together varied information and track our clients and candidates as their careers develop

Q: In your opinion where are Voyager's strengths?

A: The functionality to allow everything from marketing to reporting in-house, it allows the sales, non-ops and managers within the business to work very closely and that VMA can continue to be recognised as the leading resourcing specialist within Corporate Communications, HR and Change Management.

Q: Do you feel you make the most of the Account Manager, Free Online Clinics and 0800 free phone support line?

A: The relationship VMA Group and Voyager have is excellent, our office manager and the Voyager account manager are in regular contact from general advice and training questions to more tailored and bespoke discussions. Ella & Chanie regularly catch up to discuss the road map of the business and therefore how the Voyager products developments will benefit this growth pattern.

Voyager’s customer care offering is also excellent, the training packages and one to one consultations that they provide are hugely beneficial to newcomers and experienced members of the VMA Group. We use general Voyager training packages to introduce people to the software and we have tailor made sessions which help senior team members further their in-house knowledge.

The freephone support line is highly useful, we contact the Voyager experts to help with general database issues but also to advise during bespoke package implementation, they are able to make sure what we as a business want to achieve and what the end product will provide, to this end the deployment is second to none and our end users improvement has been higher than expected

Q: What could Voyager do better?

A: There are some changes which VMA would like to see implemented, but Voyager are always eager to hear our comments, contacted us for feedback and updating the software, we have no doubt these changes will be in place in new releases.

Quick-fire section:

  • Where was the VMA Christmas do?  5 star hotel in Central London
  • Favourite personality? Arnold Schwarzenegger…..before he became Governor of California!
  • Favourite car? TVR Chimaera
  • Proudest Business moment? Too many to mention!
  • Favourite drink? Espresso or Horlicks
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