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At Progressive Recruitment, we pride ourselves on growing our team organically. Our team managers have all started with us from the bottom up - as a trainee, learning all aspects of the business at various levels and rising through the ranks, to becoming exemplary leaders of Progressive Recruitment today.

We would like to specifically extend a big THANK YOU to two of our rising stars who have recently been promoted within the team - Daniel Illingworth, Team Manager of our Engineering division and Kris Coulthard heading up the Project Services space. Whilst both of them stumbled into the recruitment industry after graduating with a non-related degree; they were able to successfully leverage their transferable skills and natural talent that helped to establish the Progressive Recruitment brand in Australia today. This goes to show that with the right mindset, a genuine interest in the industry and an unwavering dedication in mastering a new skill set - one is on the right track in carving out a successful career for oneself.

Meet... Daniel Illingworth, Team Manager - Engineering & Construction sector

Tell us a bit about yourself

I was born and raised in Sydney and I have a degree in Architecture from the University of Sydney. However, soon after completing my studies I realised that I wanted to pursue a career in a more performance-driven industry, with faster career progression. One of my relatives who is also in the recruitment industry encouraged me to take a leap of faith and apply for an internship at a small recruitment firm. Within my first few days, I knew that recruitment was an industry that closely matched my career goals and I could see myself working in the recruitment industry long term.

What does your current role with Progressive Recruitment involve?

Following that internship in 2013, I reached out to Progressive Recruitment and joined its specialist brand - Progressive Recruitment, as a trainee. Throughout the years, I worked towards setting up the Engineering and Construction team in our Sydney office. My team specialises in placing candidates within white collar technical markets such as Oil and Gas, Mining, Construction, Engineering, Design and Infrastructure. Today, I manage the Engineering and Construction division in Sydney, Perth, Melbourne and Brisbane as well as in New Zealand and PNG. I am now 29 years old and within the five years I have been with the company, I have placed candidates in remote regions of WA, New Zealand, USA, UK and currently have contractors working in all states besides the Northern Territory/Tasmania.

Why did you choose a career in recruitment?

I take comfort in the fact that success is in my own hands when working as a recruiter. If I put in the hard work, I know that I will see results. Progressive Recruitment has a meritocratic culture where you will be rewarded for your efforts through the excellent incentive program in place. Most importantly, Progressive Recruitment provides a training platform that develops all trainees and managers and ensure that they receive the right support to grow. At Progressive Recruitment, we ensure to provide a customer-focused service central to our client and candidates' needs. We focus on delivering speed to market service based on market knowledge, vertical market specialists and the ability to engage high quality candidates within sectors of high demand.

What has been your most memorable experience working at Progressive Recruitment?

I would say most probably the team bonding events with my team and the broader team overseas. In the last 18 months, Progressive Recruitment took us to Bali, Queenstown, various places in Thailand, Thredbo and the Whitsundays. Winning the APAC team of the year award in 2016 for being the highest growing and most profitable business in the region, was also a very memorable experience.

What was your dream job growing up?

I wanted to become a professional sportsman in soccer, baseball or golf.

Any advice for new starters looking to break into the recruitment market?

If you have a strong work ethic and the drive and passion to build a long lasting career - then recruitment is right for you.


Meet...Kris Coulthard, Head of Project Services

Describe your journey that led you to Progressive Recruitment

I hail from Newcastle-upon-Tyne, England and I completed my studies in construction management at Northumbria University. My journey at Progressive Recruitment started in London in 2014 as a trainee and worked there for three years. I was part of the public sector division recruiting in the health care industry and I managed 24 runners at my peak during my time in the London office.

In 2016, Progressive Recruitment gave me the opportunity to be part of their global mobility program. I was able to join the team based here in Sydney, Australia. I always had the intention of coming back to Australia after visiting this beautiful country in 2013, so this was an opportunity not to be missed.

What do you specialise in?

I joined the Sydney team as a Principal Consultant before progressing to my current Head of Project Services role. I built the Project Services team from the ground up and my team specialises in recruiting project managers, program managers, business analysts, scrum masters and change managers. To-date, we have at least 18 contractors across various clients in Sydney.

Why did you pursue a career in recruitment?

Recruitment is a very rewarding industry - as long as you are willing to put in the hard work. To me, it offered the opportunity to make good money and further develop some of the skills that I learned when I was working in sales in my previous job. I also wanted to work in a corporate environment whilst still being able to travel and see the world. Progressive Recruitment provides just that through its travel incentives program.

Name your most memorable experience working at Progressive Recruitment

My most memorable moment was when I was able to move to the Sydney office and start up the Project Services division. This was possible because Progressive Recruitment is part of the larger SThree Group that currently has 40 offices globally. 

What was your dream job growing up?

To be a rockstar. It still is.

Any advice for new starters looking to break into the recruitment market?

Be patient and take your time to understand your vertical market. The better understanding you have and the more work you put in at the start of your career, the more benefit you will find for your clients and yourself.

Contact us for current opportunities

We are currently hiring and offering opportunities across various business levels. If you would like to join Progressive Recruitment and learn more about what we do, please don't hesitate to reach out to us on 02 9285 1000.