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#PlacedByBrook: Receptionist superstar Manjula from Vaughan Construction

posted by Christinap 05/10/2018 0 comments

We placed Manjula in a fantastic job-share Receptionist position 6 months ago at construction firm Vaughan. We sat down recently to catch up and pick her brain…

Tell me a little about your role at Vaughan?

I have been employed by Vaughan for the last 6 months as a receptionist in a job share role.

What does a typical day for you involve?

A typical day at Vaughan Construction involves answering phone calls, meet and greet and sign in all visitors. Setting up meeting rooms with coffee/water. Monitoring and responding to emails including the info mail box. Maintain and order kitchen and stationery stock as well as organising couriers, catering and booking meeting rooms. Various admin tasks such as updating templates and typing construction minutes.

In your experience, what are some of the key attributes that make a successful Receptionist/Administrator??

Being friendly and professional whether it be over the phone or in person is very important as you’re the first contact for the business. Organisational skills as you are constantly multi-tasking and need to remain calm and efficient. Being in a job share role communication plays a big part so when handing over duties to Kate we ensure we have filled each other in on the day and also keep a diary to alert each other of jobs that need to be done.

If you could go back in time what advice would you have for yourself when you were first starting your career?

Keep learning and growing your skills.

How have you found working with Brook Recruitment?

Lucy from Brook has been fantastic! From our first casual meeting to placing me in my role within 2 weeks she made it a smooth transition for me and has followed up numerous times to make sure I am ok and happy in my new role. Thanks for all your support Brook Recruitment.


What will the jobs market be like in 2020?

posted by Christinap 05/10/2018 0 comments

The labor market is changing faster than you might realise. Demographic changes and technological advancements may lead to the net loss of 5 million jobs by 2020, according to a report published by the World Economic Forum. In total, the report estimates that a total of 7.1 million jobs could be lost, the majority of which will be white-collar office and administrative jobs. Read on to find out which careers are most promising.

Software Development and IT

IT professionals have an extremely favourable outlook. As big data increasingly drives commerce, the skills needed to control networks of information are more valuable than ever. Some key areas of focus include software applications developers, database administrators and computer and information systems managers.

Data analysts

Data analysts will become increasingly more important in all industries by 2020. Companies will need help making sense of all of the data generated by technological disruptions.

Architects and engineering

Demand for these skills are expected to remain stable and potentially increase. There will be growth for engineers focused on biochemicals, nanotechnology, robotics, and materials.


There will be high demand for digitally literate, professional practice accountants. Demand for accounting and finance professionals is expected to grow by another 22% by 2020. Meanwhile, demand for actuaries, mathematicians and statisticians will increase by almost 10% by 2020.

Human resources and organisational development specialists

There will also be a need for roles to help re-skill workers. While technological and socio-economic changes will cause some jobs to disappear completely, there will also be a new jobs created and people needed to fill them. So development specialists and human resource professionals will be needed not only for hiring in a competitive market, but they will also be needed to help employees develop new skill sets.

Aged Care

As more people live longer, every aspect of the health care sector is poised for growth. And while automation is changing how some health care is delivered, demand for caregivers is going to increase as we commit to providing health care for more of the population—a population that is growing and living longer.

Social Intelligence and new media literacy

Soft skills, like social and emotional intelligence and cross-cultural competency will be of huge demand, especially in the era of virtual collaboration. New media literacy—understanding various media platforms and how to best communicate effectively in them—are valuable skills that robots won’t be likely to match any time soon.

If you’re looking for a new dream career, get in touch with with us today on 9500 2797 or email And don’t forget to sign up for job alerts and get your dream job now!


Catch up with Eliza from Hamilton Marino Builders

posted by Christinap 02/10/2018 0 comments

This month we bring you an interview with Eliza from Hamilton Marino Builders. Learn more about this innovative commercial construction company and their secret to success with our behind the scenes FAQ below…

Tell us a bit about Hamilton Marino Builders?

Established in 1975, Hamilton Marino Builders began operating around Melbourne as a residential construction company. Today, Hamilton Marino Builders is an experienced and dynamic multi-level apartment and commercial construction company. Their ‘value-added’ operational model and reputation built on providing expertise, quality and certainty, has made them an innovative industry leader. Presently, Hamilton Marino have over 15 projects in construction ranging from multi-level apartments to hotel construction and fit out.

Can you give us an insight into your company’s approach?

We are involved in each project right through its life cycle. This approach delivers integrated design and construction solutions for our clients – on time, and on budget. We are big on teamwork – our success is built on relationships. We listen to our clients and consult in an open and friendly manner and we create a team environment for all project members and act with honesty and integrity. Our directors are involved in every project from inception to handover, ensuring our teams can solve any problems that may arise. We also prioritise design management – by being involved from the first design consultants’ meetings, finding alternative design methodologies for financially challenged projects, assessing briefs, site logistics, time frame scheduling and industry conditions, our directors can ensure the best value design decisions are made. We also have an unwavering dedication and commitment to delivery which has earned Hamilton Marino a reputation for quality construction. And lastly, we never forget we are building people’s homes, and we treat everyone as if it were our own.

How are you embracing technology?

The strength of our reputation and performance is underpinned by the commercial and administrative procedures that we follow on all projects. We apply rigour to every aspect of our business by embracing leading technology, online programs and implementing best practice systems. Examples of which are our customised Safety Management Systems, our ASNZ accreditation and our Design Management Systems. Accurate up-to-date reporting is key to cost control so our Program and Cost Control and Financial Reporting Systems (Cheops) is a critical tool. Document management and control systems via Aconex online are an important part of this process. Our stringent and effective systems have been integral to Hamilton Marino enjoying 40+ years of continuous growth, regardless of economic conditions. The confidence and respect of repeat clients, organic growth of project sizes, strategic long-term planning and prudent financial planning have played an important part in our consistently strong balance sheet. Technology continues to evolve rapidly and the construction industry has long been renowned as lagging behind other industries regarding the uptake of technology. Hamilton Marino are keeping the competitive advantage by embracing emerging technology and have recently implemented a new Health, Safety, Environment and Quality (HSEQ) Management System which has given management more visibility and has streamlined a number of on site processes

You have a great team, how has the business achieved this?

Our passion, culture, reputation and integrity has attracted a highly skilled, driven team of over 250 like-minded people. Among them are talented engineers, visionary designers and expert trades people. Our extended ‘family’ includes loyal subcontractors and essential suppliers, all working towards delivering projects of distinction. We are committed to an open and collaborative approach at all levels of our business. And our hands-on directors are involved in every part of the process to ensure clients’ objectives are exceeded – from design, costing, construction logistics, construction management, cost control and administration to project handover and post-handover liaison. This is what sets us apart.


5 signs you may not be as good at your job as you think

posted by Christinap 11/09/2018 0 comments

If you’ve ever felt stuck in your job, or been passed up for a promotion that you think should have gotten, it might be a sign that you’re not as good at your job as you think you are. Learn how to tell if you’re unknowingly sabotaging your advancement at work.

1. You do the bare minimum

If you think doing what is asked of you is enough to get you recognition and promotions, think again. You’ll have to go above and beyond, constantly acquire new skills while on the job, come up with innovative ideas, lead high-visibility projects, and advocate for yourself to ensure that your manager, team, and others know you are making these moves.

2. You don’t achieve your goals

Goals at work can come from management or be self-imposed – if you’re not getting close to reaching those milestones, it’s a sign that you need to step up your game. If you’re not delivering on your projects and priorities, you may need to think about stepping up your game.

3. You need constant direction

If your boss is constantly telling you how to do things that are central to your role, it’s a subtle sign that you’re not doing as well as you think you are.

4. You feel defensive

There is always room to grow and develop, so if you get defensive when given constructive criticism, rather than implementing it, you’re already not doing your job well. Try not to ignore feedback, or you’ll find yourself stuck.

5. You’re uninterested

Ultimately, your job should play to your strengths. If you have no real interest in the field or industry you’re in it will reflect in the amount of effort you put into your job.

If you’re looking for a new dream career, get in touch with with us today on 9500 2797 or email And don’t forget to sign up for job alerts and get your dream job now!


#PlacedByBrook: Concierge star Scott from Collins Square

posted by Christinap 13/08/2018 0 comments

We featured Scott in a video for our Client newsletter in May. We had a great response from clients wanting to meet and learn more about him which led to him obtaining a fantastic role as Concierge at Collins Square. Read our Q&A with Scott below to learn more…

Tell me a little about your role at Collins Square?

As Concierge at Collins Square, I am the first point of contact for many of our major tenants. My role is to check-in guests to meetings, interviews and appointments. I also follow up with a variety of requests and perform reception duties including answering phone calls and making sure everyone has a great experience.    

What does a typical day for you involve?

Checking in guests and making sure their experience is a good one. Answering phones and emails, dealing with inquiries. Every day is different and we are dealing with some of the major companies in Australia such as CBA and KPMG.  

In your experience, what are some of the key attributes that make a successful Concierge?

You definitely need to be a people person and love talking to people (which I do)! Outstanding customer service skills and the ability to think outside the box – and someone who is always ready for any enquiry that might come their way.  

If you could go back in time what advice would you have for yourself when you were first starting your career?

Never underestimate your abilities and be confident. In other words back yourself!

How have you found working with Brook Recruitment?

I loved working with the team at Brook! From Lucy to Adrianna to Vanessa they stopped at nothing until I got the job I wanted. It’s been two months and they’re still checking in regularly to see how I am. The team at Brook care about every person they work with and that’s what makes them different and special.



Our guide to illegal interview questions

posted by Christinap 13/08/2018 0 comments

We know that an interview can be a daunting task, no matter how well prepared a candidate is. But did you know that there are some questions that a prospective employer can’t ask in an interview? Generally, questions that seek information beyond what is relevant to the role are not acceptable and employers are also not allowed to ask candidates to provide information about their age, gender, ethnicity or sexuality.

It is also unlawful to discriminate against or refuse to employ a prospective employee on the basis of their physical or mental disability, marital status, family or carer’s responsibilities, pregnancy, religion, political opinion, national extraction or social origin.  But it is important to note that there are limited occasions when discrimination may be allowed if it relates to the requirements of the position.

In addition, different treatment is sometimes legal (and necessary) to enable a particular group of people to achieve equality with others, including gender quotas in the workplace and measures to reduce the discrimination or under-representation of specific ethnic or cultural groups.

However, it is unlawful for employers to discriminate against candidates on the basis of the attributes outlined above, and if they do, candidates may be able to take legal action against the company. We’ve highlighted 4 questions below that are illegal or potentially discriminatory and suggestions for what you can be asked instead:

1. How old are you?

Unless your age directly relates to the job requirements (such as requiring proof of age to work in a licensed venue or proof of license to drive a delivery van). However because these documents contain information regarding the employee’s age and other protected attributes, such a request may be discriminatory. An employer should ask for this information/documents after an offer of employment has been made (or make any offer contingent on the documents being provided).

2. How do you juggle work and looking after your children?

This may suggest that a candidate’s family responsibilities are relevant to the decision to employ them. The family status of a prospective employee should never be used to discriminate against them. A better question would be to ask if the candidate is able to commit to working the following hours, etc.

3. Are you currently working?

Again, it is illegal to discriminate against a candidate because they are employed, unemployed, or on benefits. However, sometimes this question could be a legitimate way to determine when an employee would be able to start in the role. In this case, it would be better framed as “what date are you able to start”

4. Have you had any past injuries/illnesses?

This question relates to a protected attribute (disability) so is also unlawful. Depending on the circumstances, however, this question could be relevant if it is specifically aimed at asking about an illness or injury that would directly relate to the ability to perform the inherent requirements of the role. This question could be better framed as “is there any reason you might not be able to complete the duties required for this role?”

For more information or if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us on 03 9500 2797 for a confidential chat.


6 tips to help new starters settle in

posted by Christinap 10/08/2018 0 comments

So you’ve found your new employee to join your team – make sure you make them feel welcome from the very beginning with our top 6 tips to help your new starters settle into their new workplace with ease:

1.Prepare and induction checklist and plan

It helps to have a document that outlines the process for on-boarding new employees. Things like setting up their computer and email, showing them the bathrooms and emergency exits, explaining key software, etc. Some form of checklist that covers the basics of your employee induction process will be a great help in making your job easier and helping your new employee to feel confident in their first few days and weeks.

Don’t forget to include items such as:

  • Introducing them to their team leader/direct manager and team
  • Performance standards and expectations of new employees
  • Office/work times
  • Team roles and responsibilities
  • Organisational chart
  • Layout of office – including where people sit and their names/roles
, as well as bathrooms, kitchen, etc
  • Security issues and access to the office
  • Safety and OHS procedures
2. Make sure that their workspace is ready for them

It will help to make your new employee feel like their desk and work area is really their own, so ensure it is clean and tidy before they start. It is also a good idea to ensure that their computer and email address are working and that all of the necessary stationery has been ordered and is waiting for them.

3. Introduce them to the team

After your new employee has arrived, it is important to give them a tour of the office and introduce them to each member of the office individually as well as outlining what job role they perform. This will have a huge positive impact on how much your new employee will feel part of the team. It could also be a good idea to have them sit with other members of the team for a couple of hours per week so that they can have a better idea of what it is that everyone does on a day to day basis.

4. Schedule regular catch ups and encourage feedback

It is important for new staff to have regular one on ones in their first few weeks. They will be able to check in with you with any feedback they have on their first few days and it will make them feel a little less lost. These don’t need to be every day, but a quick 15-20 minute catch up every 3 or 4 days will help iron out any initial teething problems and ensure new employees are happy carrying out core responsibilities and settling in.

5. Assign a buddy

A buddy means your new employee has a go-to colleague for any initial questions about the company and the environment. Sometimes staff will feel more comfortable asking their buddy certain questions than senior management, particularly if management are busy. Giving them a mentor from the team that is not you means that they will always have someone to ask for help or advice if you are not around and will make their integration into the team easier.

6. Organise a social event

Organising a social event after work hours is a great way for new and current employees to get to know one another in a more relaxed environment and a great way to celebrate the new employee! A casual out of office lunch or after work drinks in their first couple of weeks will go a long way in welcoming the new employee in a relaxed environment.


Welcoming Stephanie back to the office!

posted by Christinap 07/08/2018 0 comments

This month we welcome Stephanie back to the Brook Recruitment office after having taken maternity leave. We sit down with her to find out why she’s excited about returning to work…

Firstly, welcome back! How does it feel to return to Brook?

Thank you! It feels great to be back and getting back on the grind as they say.

What have you seen change in the recruitment landscape since you’ve been gone?

So far, I can certainly see the changes that Brook Recruitment has undertaken. Our clients and candidates needs are at the forefront of everything we do here, especially when it comes to simplifying the recruitment process in an efficient and effective manner. Take our newsletters for example, Vanessa our director understands that for many of us there is never enough hours in a day, how can we make sure that our clients and candidates get the best out of our newsletters? We’ve now included videos in our newsletters and we’ve had great success in engaging client and candidates and achieving great results for our candidates.

What has been the evolution of your role since returning? What will your main specialty be?

My role has evolved to allow me to specialise in working with our clients in the financial services sector. I am excited to come back on board and focus my efforts on expanding and evolving this space.

What are you excited about now that you are returning to Brook?

I’m excited to meet up with our clients, more than anything, as I’m sure there is lots to catch up on and seeing where they are with their business.

To get in touch with with Stephanie call 9500 2797 or email


Our guide to getting the best out of your career!

posted by Christinap 12/07/2018 0 comments

So you’ve landed your dream job…read our top tips below on how to build up your resilience and get the best out of your career:

#1 Improve your industry knowledge

Knowledge is about building your brain bank around your sector and becoming an expert in your field. Here are some easy ways to ensure you keep on top of your industry knowledge:

  • Read the Financial Review even if it’s one article a day. For me personally, this has made a huge impact in building my industry knowledge.
  • Subscribe to one or two good websites that are in your sector and try and get across the key topics, issues and people in your company’s sector.
  • Reading books, in particular reading about a business or person that you can resonate with can be great and there are so many out there.
#2 Foster strong networks in your industry

Building a robust network is an invaluable resource. It gives you the ability to gain immediate feedback and advice, gives you valuable learning opportunities and exposure to other professionals.

  • LinkedIn has become the staple tool for professionals to stay connected with each other in a low-impact manner. Your LinkedIn profile is critical to your personal brand.
  • Attend events or networking groups within your sector. There are lots out there to get involved in. They should be in your sector and ideally in sync with your experience.
#3 Boost your skills

If you were to interview the most successful people in the world today, there is a common denominator: they say they are always learning.

  • Read, Read, Read. Books are an incredible resource to open your mind and your soul.
  • Do a short course online. There is a myriad of courses – both certified and offline. Do your research and find a course that’s right for you.
  • When you’re with other people, especially people with skills that you want to have, listen. Ask them about themselves, show your interest in them by listening to their dialogue and ask genuine and relevant questions.
#4 Develop the ability to overcome challenges

Your ability to overcome challenges so that they don’t derail your day or your week is something every employer looks for. There is seldom a day where you won’t experience pressure in the professional world.

We have a saying a Brook and I believe this is true for everyone in business: keep moving forward. Focus on the positive, label your emotion, own it and then move on.

#5 Find your mentors – surround yourself with people that inspire you

A mentor will give you access to a wealth of knowledge that you may not get access to in your job. A mentor can help elevate you from the daily grind and keep you focused on working toward your dream job.

For some people, they stumble upon a great mentor along their career, but for most people you need to find someone you respect and ask for their guidance. Take your time before you take up any of their time. Be clear about why you are engaging this mentor.


4 tips to promote a healthy workplace this winter

posted by Christinap 06/07/2018 0 comments

Cold weather and associated illnesses can have significant implications in the workplace. According to a 2015 study, workplace absenteeism costs Australian businesses $33 billion in lost productivity. With the onset of the winter season, ailments such as colds and flu are far more prominent in the workplace. We’ve outlined a few things you can do to counteract sickness absence over winter.

1. Provide an annual flu vax

Unlike a common cold which lasts a few days, symptoms of the flu can last for 1 to 2 weeks with recovery sometimes taking a lot longer. Unsurprisingly, the flu is the leading cause of sick days and lost productivity, costing Australian businesses an estimated 1.5 million lost workdays per year.  Given the 2017 Australian flu season was the second worst on record, it pays to be on alert for what you can do to help protect your business from the flu ahead of the winter months in 2018. Providing annual influenza vaccination for employees will go a long way to prevent the flu and its complications, and reduce the spread of the infection in the workplace and the community.

While the vaccination does not guarantee that individuals will not get the flu, it can help reduce the severity and/or duration of the illness. 

2. Encourage unwell team members to stay home

It is recommended that individuals with symptoms of the flu stay home from work until they have had no fever for 24 hours to help reduce the spread of infection. Ensure you have policies and procedures in place to allow employees who are unwell to take adequate leave for rest and recovery.

3. Remind employees of cough and sneeze etiquette

Remember to cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze. Consider providing alcohol-based hand sanitiser around the office to help protect against the spread of germs as well.

4. Keep it clean

Encourage a clean and tidy workplace to help reduce the survival and spread of cold and flu viruses. Used tissues should be placed directly into a bin and not left on desks. Supply cleaning products or have cleaning staff to ensure that frequently touched surfaces are wiped down using either detergent or an alcohol wipe on a regular basis.


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