Welcome to PureKat
We’re delighted to meet you. PureKat Consultancy is a friendly bunch of highly skilled recruitment specialists, waiting to help you find the next great member of your team, or take the next step in your work life.
Find out more about us;
Hello, my name is Katrina Smith, aka Kat, and this is the backstory to how PureKat Consultancy came into existence.
I cannot pretend that ever since I can remember I had a burning ambition to start my own business or have a career in recruitment. What I can tell you is that I left school after sixth form not really knowing what I wanted to spend the rest of my life doing!
I spent the first five years working in various roles for a number of different local businesses. There was a common denominator – all my jobs involved communicating with people. I discovered early on in my career that I love dealing with people and that my outgoing, some would say gregarious, personality meant that I had a natural flair in this area. I was a “people person”
In my early twenties, I had the overwhelming urge to go and “discover myself”. My first trip backpacking around Asia gave me what I know will be a lifelong love of travelling. As a Haverhill girl experiencing a different continent and culture for the first time, my eyes were well and truly opened. I saw just how differently people in other parts of our beautiful planet actually live. The inequalities that exist in the human race struck home and I realised how fortunate I was.
A new, more mature, Kat returned to the UK after that first adventure. Eager to “knuckle down” and take a more responsible, “grown up” approach to life I worked for almost four years as an Account Manager for a leading labelling company in Haverhill. Here I honed my people skills and learnt the intricacies of how businesses work. Eventually, feeling stuck in a rut, the backpack came out again and another year of travelling in Southeast Asia ensued.
The recruitment bug bites...
On my return in February 2011, I had the opportunity to join a recruitment agency in Haverhill as a Business Development Manager and Office Manager. I soon discovered that I could do something that scared most people rigid, I could sell!
I had finally found my niche – recruitment. I had a role where I could combine a love of interacting with people with a talent for selling. I could finally unleash my creativity and utilise my business acumen to devise successful marketing campaigns. All of this was set against a backdrop of a fast moving, challenging industry where positivity was the key to survival. It was exciting and I loved it!
As time went by the nagging feeling that there might be a different approach to recruitment grew stronger. I had found my niche but it was not perfect. Deciding to take some time out to mull over my future and to get some perspective back in my life I left to travel again. There was no doubt that recruitment was the right industry for me – I just needed to find the right company to work with.
When I came back to the UK, I began working with another recruitment agency, looking after the operational side of their business. I experienced a very different approach to recruitment but it did not take me long to realise that this was not the answer I was looking for either!
Doing it differently...
I was starting to develop my own vision as to what a perfect recruitment consultancy would look like. In July 2017, that vision manifested itself in the launch of PureKat.
Life experiences gained from extensive travel, the lessons learnt from holding key positions in two recruitment agencies, and the customer facing roles in my early career, have shaped PureKat. Recruitment is a challenging industry. Recruiters have successfully earned the disdain and distrust of the vast majority of the population – and there are reasons for that reputation! I reflected long and hard on my time working for other recruitment agencies. I prised apart every element of the candidate and client experience and asked the question “How could this be better”.
The PureKat philosophy takes the best of what your standard recruitment agency has to offer and disregards the rest. I have added in a healthy dose of honesty, exuberance, drive and determination and finished off with a big dollop of humility. The result – an honest, hardworking professional recruitment consultancy that is also a little bit quirky and fun. A recruitment consultancy that I am proud to put my name to – welcome to PureKat Consultancy.
Did you know there were around 40,000 recruitment agencies operating in the UK in 2019? It is not surprising that businesses can feel overwhelmed and pressured by the number of recruiters chasing for their job vacancies.
At PureKat, we appreciate it can be difficult to understand what makes one recruitment agency different to another. This is why we developed the PureKat Philosophy. Our philosophy outlines what makes us stand out from the rest of the recruitment crowd. As a client or candidate, this is what you can expect when you work with PureKat Consultancy.
“The beginning of wisdom is the definition of terms.”
When taking the decision on the name and branding for PureKat it was no accident that we steered clear of using the word agency. It was not an attempt to split hairs or be smart. As far as we are concerned, there is a real difference between a recruitment agency and a recruitment consultancy, and we are not alone in that thought.
The definitions of both recruitment terms, according to the Cambridge Dictionary, are:
Recruitment agency – a business that is paid to find suitable workers for other companies and organisations.
Recruitment consultancy – a business that is paid to give expert advice to people looking for skilled or specialised jobs, or to companies looking for skilled or specialised workers.
We make sure we understand you, what you need in a candidate or employer and the challenges you are facing with recruitment or finding a job. This consultative approach is one of the factors that sets PureKat apart from other recruitment services. It is the reason why we have developed long-term relationships with many of our clients and why candidates refer PureKat to friends and family.
“The quieter you become, the more you can hear.”
The key to success in finding the right candidate for a job vacancy or the right position for a candidate, is listening. If we do not take the time to hear, and understand, what you say, properly, how can we help you?
Listening is a skill; it is something the PureKat team work on constantly. There are occasions when we do have to hold our natural enthusiasm and exuberance in check but in the majority of cases, we will be all ears! #QuietKat.
“Speak with honesty, think with sincerity, and act with integrity.”
The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth is our solemn oath to our candidates and clients. We do not make empty promises, or give you the hard sell and we would never oversell a candidate or position. Our business practices are always ethical. If they were not we would struggle to sleep at night. Being authentic, in both words and actions, is incredibly important to the team. From our experience, this authenticity is often lacking in the recruitment sector.
“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
Every one of us on this planet is a masterpiece. At PureKat, we applaud the miracle of our uniqueness as human beings. We celebrate diversity and inclusion and are committed to ensuring that the clients and candidates we work with share our values and beliefs. Our team promise to treat everyone we meet with respect and dignity.
Katrina’s career in recruitment started in 2011 and she has worked alongside some of the most prestigious clients in East Anglia. Katrina is proud to be heading up her own recruitment consultancy and doing things a little differently.
With a proven track record of delivering a consistent high standard of service to both clients and candidates, Katrina has the drive and determination to succeed. She has handpicked an experienced team who share her values, enthusiasm for recruitment and love of life.
I have always wanted to brush the hair of a male orangutan. I visited Borneo especially to see the orangutans and they did not disappoint.
My passport to go travelling / on holiday and contact lenses so I can see (as I hate wearing glasses).
“Treat people how you would want to be treated.”
I really believe in this philosophy. I love karma quotes too.
“What animal best describes you?”
My answer was an elephant, as I have a big and bold presence, I stomp around, I never forget and I always have a trunk to pack my stuff for my holiday!
My first ever interview was a nightmare. I fell in the front door, then again off the chair and got a simple question wrong. However, I turned it around and I got the role. The moral to this story is, no matter how bad you think something has gone, you can always turn things around in the end.
Daniel brings a wealth of hands on sales, manufacturing, logistics and warehouse expertise to the team.
Since starting at PureKat in February 2018, Daniel has developed strong client and candidate relationships. Combined with his previous experience this has resulted in successfully filling positions in manufacturing, logistics, engineering, office support and IT in the Cambridgeshire, Essex, Norfolk and Suffolk area.
They always look like they are waiting to cause mayhem at the drop of a fish…
Comedy (it is the key to happiness) and my guitar or piano. I need something to keep my mind amused at all times!
“If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door”
This is very true in the world of recruitment!
“Do you want an interview or do you want the job?”
Bit of a strange one really, but I took the job when I was asked this question. In hindsight, an interview would have been a much wiser choice!
I could not find a tie for an interview once, except for a skinny black one. The first thing the interviewer said to me was that he did not realise they were recruiting for a waiter!
Tertia joined the PureKat team in July 2018 and has extensive experience in customer service.
Tertia always strives to go above-and-beyond in her quest to to match the right candidates with the right position.
I love many animals, so this was a hard choice. However, it would have to be a sloth. They are gentle creatures who we could all learn from. We live in such a busy world, we do not take the time to slow down and appreciate its true beauty.
Easy – my family (my husband and girls) and food.
“It is okay to cry when there’s too much on your mind. The clouds rain too when things get heavy”
This quote has never been truer than over the last few months.
If you were a tree, what kind of tree would you be?
My answer was a Bonsai Tree… a tree that takes time, grows in all different shapes and sizes, but when given the nurture it needs will grow stronger and more beautiful as the years go on.
During one interview, we were discussing the phone system and internal and external calls. I was told about answering the phone in a polite and professional manner. When asking how I know when to answer the phone, the interviewer looked at me and then to the clock on the wall and said if it is before 12 it’s ‘Good Morning’ and after 12 it’s ‘Good Afternoon’.
I wanted the ground to swallow me up at that point. Did they think I did not know the difference between morning and afternoon? That could cost me the position. I acted quickly and reworded the question again. What I was actually referring to was whether it was an internal or external call. I went for the latter. We laughed the first answer off and I got the job. I worked with a fantastic team for many years and met my future husband and two of my closest friends at this company.