How to become a talent acquisition manager: Ray’s story

Meet Ray and find out about her life as head of talent acquisition at Universal Music UK. Part of our Bitesize world of work series.

Every day I walk into this building... I get goosebumps!

  • Ray is responsible for finding the right people for junior and senior job roles at her company’s record labels. She also helps employees with career advice

  • Ray is dyslexic and says she struggled with academic subjects but did well in Art and Music at GCSE

  • She says you need to be able to build good relationships and a network. It is also important to be trustworthy

  • You don’t have to have formal qualifications to do Ray’s job. She got into it by getting office experience through temporary employment agencies

  • She studied Popular and World Music at university. She originally wanted to be a gospel or R&B singer

  • Ray says it is tough to get into the music industry, but she worked hard and got out there to meet people.

Recruitment consultants help employers find suitable staff. Talent acquisition managers, like Ray Pope, do this but they also take a longer term, strategic approach - in line with a company’s future plans.

What to expect if you want to be a recruitment consultant

Universal does not publish its salary ranges. The following information is from Labour Market Information (LMI) data and relates to similar jobs in the music industry:

  • Recruitment consultant salary: £16,000 to £60,000
  • Recruitment consultant working hours: 38 to 40 hours per week. You could work evenings attending events and appointments

What qualifications do you need to be a recruitment consultant?

  • Typical entry requirements: You'll usually need two to three A-levels, or equivalent, for a degree in any subject. Some employers may prefer a subject related to the industry, like Human Resources, Marketing or Public Relations
  • You'll usually need five GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and Maths, for an advanced apprenticeship as a Recruitment Consultant
  • You could start as an office assistant in a recruitment agency and work your way up through on-the-job training and promotion. You could also try getting work experience in areas like marketing, sales or public relations.

This information is a guide (sources: LMI for All, National Careers Service)

For careers advice in all parts of the UK visit: England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales

Tips and advice
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