The International Institute for Anti-Ageing (iiaa) is one of the fastest growing companies in the beauty industry. An exciting opportunity has opened for a dynamic CIPD qualified HR business partner with energy and passion to take its specialist Beautymatch recruitment division to the next level and support the exponential growth plans of the organisation.
We spoke to Katharine Evans, head of HR & recruitment at the iiaa, to find out more about the HR business partner role and what it’s like to work for this growing organisation.
Katharine Evans, head of HR & recruitment, iiaa
Tell us more about the iiaa
The International Institute for Anti-Ageing (iiaa) is one of the most innovative SME companies in the beauty industry. Our philosophy is about excellence and quality and this runs through everything we do. Our brands are Environ® Skin Care, jane iredale™ mineral make-up and the Advanced Nutrition Programme™ beauty supplements and we service thousands of prestigious salons, spas and clinics across the UK and Ireland.
The core company values are integrity and efficacy. Our mission is to empower skincare professionals with the best products and training to ensure continuous skills improvement and business growth. We’re genuinely invested in our staff and focus on supporting talent to shine through.
Why is the HR team so pivotal to the company’s success?
We are a privately owned, family run company which has grown rapidly in the past 20 years. We now have about 170 employees and the HR function is crucial to supporting and motivating employees, guiding and advising managers to get the very best out of their team members plus working closely with the directors to enable business plans and strategies.
Our unique ‘family’ culture is a valued part of the business and the HR team helps to develop and strengthen this culture. The recruitment & HR teams work together to ensure we achieve the perfect fit for each role and help individuals to achieve longer term career goals with the iiaa.
Tell us about the role you’re recruiting for and what it involves
This is a bittersweet recruitment exercise as I’m actually looking for my own replacement having made a decision to relocate back to Sydney, Australia. Needless to say, I absolutely love the company, my role and everything it stands for and wouldn’t be leaving if not for this life decision.
The role of HR business partner is extremely varied and challenging with never a dull moment! Accountable for the Beautymatch recruitment division, you will manage two fabulous recruitment consultants, be responsible for internal recruitment and delivering double digit growth for the external recruitment side of the department.
The opportunity for Beautymatch is unparalleled as this is a unique, specialist recruitment service to varied clients in the beauty industry. You will also be directly recruiting senior level positions working for the iiaa.
In terms of HR, you will manage a brilliant HR advisor, offering support on employee relations issues and representing escalation issues to the board of directors.
Overall, this is a strategic role reporting directly to the managing director and forming part of the key leadership team.
What kind of candidates are you looking for?
Passion is the number one attribute. You must be CIPD qualified in order to provide the right knowledge and understanding, plus you need HR, recruitment and management experience. But cultural fit is absolutely crucial. We’re looking for a dynamic individual who isn’t afraid to roll up their sleeves and get stuck in.
You will enjoy working in a non-corporate, fast paced environment and be able to think on your feet. You should always be willing (and able) to offer staff a chance to be listened to and understood. An interest in the beauty industry is definitely important so you can connect and engage with employees and fit into the team.
Experience in a similar environment would be advantageous – particularly where change is embraced and welcomed as integral to successful growth. We’re looking for someone who really wants to make a difference, has the confidence to propose ‘out there’ ideas and deliver on promises in an efficient and timely manner whilst dealing with the day to day ‘nitty gritty’.
Why would someone want to work for the iiaa?
You will be hard pressed to find a company with people as passionate and energetic as the team at the iiaa! Everyone truly believes in our products and what we do and that is something very special. Aside from a truly lovely environment, we offer excellent opportunities to learn, develop and progress your career. Of course, we get discounted products and product allowance as well.
What exciting projects are you working on?
There is a lot of change ahead in 2017. Implementing innovation and new business models are waiting for the new HR business partner to progress and help our sales and marketing efforts to go stratospheric.
What opportunities for training and development are there?
Our baseline is full training across all our brands as well as the tools, processes and technologies that drive our business and communication infrastructure. We believe in sponsoring talent and there is plenty of opportunity to shape the role and really make it your own.
What tips would you offer applicants?
Please apply with passion and enthusiasm, we would love to see your personality shining through your cover letter. Highlight career achievements and why you believe HR is important to a business. Include some blue sky thinking – we love that.
Sum up what it’s like to work for the iiaa
It keeps you on your toes – people are constantly surprising but it is incredibly rewarding. It’s amazing to see people come into the business and progress their career with us. I’m constantly learning and collaborating with colleagues to think of new ways to do things. We work hard but we have fun and the family vibe really flows throughout the business. If you adore make-up, skincare and all things beauty related, this is your dream role!