Aston Carter Reviews in London, England | Glassdoor

Aston Carter London Reviews

Updated May 18, 2017
25 reviews

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London, England (UK)

3.9
Star Star Star Star Star
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Aston Carter Founder and Chief Executive Officer Sean Zimdahl
Sean Zimdahl
17 Ratings

25 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Excellent L&D and 'Academy' for new joiners (in 6 reviews)

  • Competitive, like minded people, great people, support, ability to move up and grow with the company, great base pay and ability to earn more (in 5 reviews)

Cons
  • Work-life balance is tough to manage (in 10 reviews)

  • office politics make it difficult to progress if you're not in with senior management (in 4 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "A review from a current employee"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Consultant in London, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Consultant in London, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Aston Carter full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Despite being part of a big company Aston Carter is still small enough to change with the times and with feedback from the people.

    A few people have left recently as they were not really interested in Sales, they liked the atmosphere and Thursdays in the pub but they did not like the fact this is a sales job and not an admin job. It is highly recommended for up and coming sales people, but not for people who want to just forward on emails so it is important you think about what you really want to do if you are thinking of joining.

    I am writing this post as even though I have only been here 2 years I was asked to help with hiring, I was shocked when a candidate said they had been put off by what they had seen on Glassdoor, I then realised that incumbent employees don't post, only those who have left to go to other industries!

    I wanted to share my positive experiences which include:
    Relaxed working atmosphere
    Very, and I mean Very, Social people who want to spend time with each other and do all sorts of social events
    Great commission structure once billing
    Number 1 supplier to more companies than I even knew existed
    Flat structure and ability to progress quickly if you put in the work and make the deals
    I also like the fact we actually do something for the world by supporting a couple of big name charities, I wouldn't have thought a Recruitment company would do this so that was a refreshing thing when I joined.

    All seniors and leaders are shareholders which mean everyone cares about the company and the Brand.

    Cons

    It is hard sitting next to someone making over a £100k and to not be frustrated as soon as you join you want to be able to do the same as quickly as possible. But it takes time and they give you the structure to learn.

    Advice to Management

    Make sure you employees know about Glassdoor, I shouldn't have found out about it from a candidate really!


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Provides some of the best opportunities in the recruitment market"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Consultant in London, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Consultant in London, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Aston Carter (Less than a year)

    Pros

    - There is serious money to be made with some earning in excess of 300k a year.
    - Excellent L&D and 'Academy' for new joiners.
    - Support to grow into what ever role you want: Account Manager, Client Strategy, Sales Manager or even if you want to move internationally (USA, Asia, Australia)
    - Performance Culture. Working with some real high performing teams.
    - Sean (CEO) & Eli (RVP)leading the Sales Division across EMEA are very inspiring and have a clear vision and purpose.
    - The company is adapting to enter new markets and sell more than just staffing to its clients which yet gain creates even more opportunity for employees.

    Cons

    - a lot of people complain about KPIs in the below reviews. If you don't want to be given a target and be asked to hit it recruitment in general is probably the wrong industry for you.
    - contracted hours are 8-6 which is normal for the city, sometimes you may have to work late to source an urgent role. No one makes you do that though.
    - attrition will be high this year because of market challenges. The role is harder than ever before and only those able to adapt to selling new products will end up staying and making money.
    - recruitment is often looked down upon by many due to a saturated market of small-medium sized firms with moody tactics. Luckily Aston Carter are not one of those and have some excellent values.
    - no benefits in package.

    Advice to Management

    - Finance now able to only sign off £30 a head for client lunches and meets? Seniors have to pay for their own paintball day out organised by the company on work time? No real benefits, no company contribution for pension? We are a big corporate now it would be great to actually see the benefits of that.

    Base Salary for Seniors should be 35 atleast. Many of these people billed you 300k last year to hit the incentive trip. Consultants should be 28k.

    Keep driving right performance culture. Not all attrition is bad attrition.


  3. "Good Place to Learn"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Recruiter in London, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Recruiter in London, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Aston Carter full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - Good place to learn
    - Some admirable support from management, in and out of office
    - Good to start here, even if it's not for you you, it's a good first step on the career ladder
    - Good l&d and exposure to European teams
    - Good social side
    - CEO
    - Well known name in the market

    Cons

    - very corporate
    - some poor management across the company
    - Wouldn't say morale is the best
    - Lots of people leaving
    - basic salary poor - but still potential to earn

    Advice to Management

    Trust your staff more, it isn't school


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  5. "Average, good learning"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Consultant in London, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Consultant in London, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Aston Carter full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    they plug a lot of money into their l&d, there are people who want you to succeed but at the end of the day they aren't going to help you get there. It's a very independent job and you have to have a lot of self-accountability.

    Cons

    The company are incredibly cheap, they will try and nickle and dime you on everything. If you do a 20 grand placement, you can't take the candidate for a nice dinner to celebrate and maintain that relationship. Senior leadership are so distant from having ever done recruitment or picked up a phone that they have no idea of the challenges. The company has a massive on drinking culture, it's like no one in the business has a hobby outside of going to the pub. It's a very stale culture with a very high attrition. You join here to learn recruitment, not enjoy life. Work life balance sucks.

    Advice to Management

    Relax your rules, adults who are succeeding are doing it for them not for you. Learn a bit of emotional intelligence, if someone has worked 3 70 hour weeks in a row and turns up late 15-20 minutes one day, there is no need to pull them into a meeting room and bollock them. This happens all to frequently. Significant disconnect between sales managers and what their teams are doing.

    Sean is a great guy though and very inspiring, his Sales Manager and Directors of Sales - not so much.


  6. "Highly recommend"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Recruitment Consultant in London, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Recruitment Consultant in London, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Aston Carter (More than a year)

    Pros

    Structured training
    like minded people
    very high earning potentials/uncapped commission
    fast paced
    forward thinking, fast growing company
    Career progression
    overseas opportunities
    huge client base

    Cons

    Can be tough at times and the standards are very high, but it's worth it

    Advice to Management

    We did junior level appraisals with a senior director last year, which was very beneficial and interesting - more stuff like that please!


  7. "Positive Learning Curve"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Recruitment Consultant in London, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Recruitment Consultant in London, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Aston Carter (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    After working in a variety of sales roles prior to working at Aston Carter I found that my experience at the company really developed me as a recruiter and taught me the true value of hard work. After meeting some of my potential colleagues at interview stage, I was placed in to a team that best suited what I was looking for in terms of a new role and into an environment I felt I could progress in. I was given support along the way and learnt from some of the best recruitment consultants in the city which built my confidence and helped me to develop my own set of skills. I found working with so many motivated and driven individuals helped me to stay focused and really gave me the foundation to progress in my career. Definitely recommend this company for driven individuals with a hunger to earn money and people that want to be rewarded for the work they put in.

    Cons

    The demanding nature of the job got the better of me and I find myself stressed at times but always persevered and the commission cheque always helped.


  8. Helpful (3)

    "Definitely work here if you want to do sales!!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Consultant in London, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Consultant in London, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    I get the previous persons comments, it is hard, it is long hours, it is challenging. However what that person obviously doesn't get is that all jobs are hard to begin with, all are long hours and all pay relatively low salaries until you add value. The person below has missed out some key elements of their own under performance (one deal in a year usually means you don't earn a lot and you get put on some form of performance support plan - it is Sales after all), however I won't go into that, I will just outline how well I have done in the past 18 months as an example to all potential joiners to what is possible if you are smart, organised and are open to listening and learning from those who have performed well over the years!

    I have been promoted twice and earned over £40k in my first year which isn't bad considering how tough the market has been.
    I am now the Account Manager for one of our biggest banking accounts and am loving the responsibility.
    My team are great and we all get a long well and are all pulling in the same direction.
    I know exactly what I need to do to get promoted to the next level and I hope to do this within 6 months which will mean I have made it to Senior Consultant in 2 years!!

    Cons

    It is hard, a lot banks were not hiring this year and we have had to develop out client portfolio more so than in previous years. The biggest negative is that I didn't start the year before (2015) as then I would have been a year further forward in my career and could have earned more in 2016 as I would have known more!

    Advice to Management

    Be open with new joiners, I was told how hard it would be in interview and that really helped when I started finding it tough 6 months as I had thought about how to deal with it!
    Also, don't change things due bad people leaving, only change things to help the good people who are building the business.


  9. "DO NOT WORK HERE"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Recruiter in London, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Recruiter in London, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Office banter was good at times.

    Cons

    - Archaic form of management. All based on hitting KPIs for calls, CVs brought in, meetings booked etc. If you fail to hit these you will be torn apart, usually in one of the "red zone" meetings that happen at 8am and 2pm every day.
    - No consideration for work/life balance
    - Be prepared to work 12 hours minimum. At the peak I was arriving at 7am and leaving at 9pm...and my work ethic would still be questioned at times.
    - All based on face time, doesn't matter if you're efficient, leave before 7pm and you will be considered lazy.
    - You will be grossly underpaid if you work in permanent recruitment, base starts at 20k and £300 fee per placement regardless of the size. I once made a deal that made the company 50k, my manager 10k, and me £300.
    - The opportunities sold to you in interviews are largely a myth. Potential earnings will be massively overstated and realistically there is little scope for rapid progression (in perm at least).

    Advice to Management

    Start living in the 21st century and treat people as human beings rather than machines. Some of the staff you lose through awful mismanagement will go on to have great careers elsewhere with companies that make them feel valued.


  10. "ok place to work"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    Current Employee - Recruiter in London, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Recruiter in London, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Aston Carter full-time

    Pros

    ambitious atmosphere to work in

    Cons

    very clique orientated, have to fit in


  11. Helpful (2)

    "Boiler Room"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Recruiter in London, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Recruiter in London, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Initial training and L&D follow ups are great for helping progression and the new offices in London are fantastic

    Cons

    The boiler room culture is stuck in the dark ages. Phone hammering and "one shoe fits all" KPI's are ridiculous.
    The perceptions are nothing shy of scandalous and the office politics and gossiping is a joke. They are more focused on what you appear to be doing than your actual results.
    A strict dress code and the way they treat those that are different make it a terrible place to work long term.
    Aston Carter's philosophy...let's throw mud at a wall and see what sticks.
    A great place to start one's career, so you can learn what not to do in the future.
    Too many glass ceilings to break through to realistically progress.
    Oh and any promises they make you during your interview. Don't believe, they lie, and force you to lie to others.
    Making people work 60 hours a week + for a recruiter fee of 300 and the need to do 6 deals and a 360 before getting promoted to billing, on a basic of 20k...But it's not all about the deals to get promoted, one has to show Aston Carter values. So realistically it will be a year before earning commission. on 20k + 300, and they expect you to be over the moon when you do a deal.

    Advice to Management

    it's the 21st Century. ADAPT.
    Relax the KPI's and talk to other people in the industry and see how they are doing things. Guaranteed more success.
    Listen to employees.


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