27 July 2015

Bogan's Rant - With Michael McShane - July 2015

Bogan's Rant - With Michael McShane - July 2015 Bogan's Rant - With Michael McShane - July 2015 Bogan's Rant - With Michael McShane - July 2015

Riders on the Storm

Fellow Bogans - we live in interesting and highly volatile times! The market is about as unpredictable as a baby's bum! We're all experts and we all have our opinions, but what remains is that the majority believe there are tough times ahead - there are storms brewin'….. that's stating the obvious - like you know it's cold outside when you go outside and it's cold! So where am I headed with this? Not sure yet, so stick with me.

What can I rant about this month? What is really grinding my gears? What's the hot topic discussed everywhere I go? What does everyone ask me on the phone?

It all comes down to the market: where is it headed - when will it improve - which clients have vacancies (where is the demand, if any) - have salaries gone down - is there light at the end of the tunnel?

The Bogan can tell you with ease the recent trends with flannies (hipsters tie them around their waists), who won the recent F1 GP, most popular tattoos (southern cross and Australian flag are still up there), baby names (like Cruz, Haze, Holden, Caprice) etc. I can also tell you that Bogans love to drink beer, Jack Daniels, Jim Beam…none of those "girlie" drinks. We also like all things jeans, mullets, goaties, long beards, flannos, AC/DC and desert boots (although many of the hipster trendsetters are bringing them back in!). But a few facts remain: Bogans don't start fights: Though they always stand up for what they believe in and Bogans are fiercely loyal: If they like something, they stick with it.

Bogans dislike dishonesty and getting unfairly screwed - it's Un-Austrayen.

In dealing with the Bogan, you know you are getting the truth and brutal honesty - many don't like that, but your insecurity issues are not my problem! In fact, don't confuse my personality with my attitude! My personality is who I am. My attitude depends on who you are………

It seems many of us in the industry are becoming increasingly despondent and aggressive. Times are tough. Many clients are struggling to make ends meet and that transfers on to the service providers - the drilling companies, consultancies, software, catering & cleaning, transport & machinery companies……recruiters!

We all need to dig in to survive, but the latest trend by clients is to reverse term their suppliers. Tell them the rate and their terms - irrespective of how unreasonable they are - comply or you're out! Do they know your costs? No. Do they care? No. Do they understand the cost drivers behind your business? No and nor do they care or understand. Remember, light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until they speak! No disrespect to Contracts departments (they have a job to do), but many of them are likely to have eaten paint chips as kids.

We, as an industry, have let it happen. The never ending quest to win business turns into a race to the bottom with costs and margins being squeezed tighter and tighter.

Recruitment agency owners (for example) are, mostly, being sucked into a vicious cycle of having to pitch ever-lower to win or just maintain business while at the same time being asked to accept even more risk, on behalf of the client and manage even more risk within their own business.

I encourage you all to look very, very closely at what you are conceding to in every client negotiation, agreement, and contract and ask yourself whether it is fair or even remotely worth it!!

Are you undervaluing your service?

I suspect that what you thought about agreeing (conceding) to might cost you much more than you stand to gain. Reminds me of how you can never lose a homing pigeon - if your homing pigeon doesn't come back, what you've lost is a pigeon.

Stand behind your value and don't be intimidated by clients suggesting that your position is unreasonable or that 'other providers aren't objecting'. Similar to my North Korean friend and his response to how he was finding things back at home - he said he couldn't complain……….and we all know how that's going!

Many of the recruiters that have caved on rates during the past 18 months are no longer operating…food for thought.

The industry cannot, and should not, tolerate margin erosion any longer.

Are you being unfairly screwed? We would love to hear your feedback...

Bogan's Pet Hate: Autocorrect on mobile phones texting!