VIE at home

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Background

VIE at home is one of the leading direct sales companies in the UK, selling a wide range of cosmetics and skincare products through 10,000+ direct sales consultants and a transactional website.

VIE at home, formally Virgin Vie At Home, has recently been bought out by a management team led by Ros Simmons and Ratan Daryani who have both worked for the company since its fruition. Their strong belief in the direct sales model means that the new management team is well positioned to harness the full potential of the brand and business.

To continue the growth of VIE at home the new management team will continue to focus on and enhance the direct sales channel, which is the core of the business. To achieve this, they recently began a national recruitment campaign with eRecruit Solutions to recruit direct sales consultants throughout the UK.

Challenge

When looking to recruit direct sales professionals throughout the UK, VIE at home faced a number of challenges. Yvonne Clay, Head of Brand at VIE at home explains “Recruiting direct sales professionals involves a lot of time and effort due to the way the direct sales model is structured. To advertise, and appoint a new direct sales representative can take a considerable amount of time”.

VIE at home has looked at expanding its national network of direct sales professionals through previous recruitment advertising in local/regional media, such as local newspapers and radio.

Clay explains further “Using local media to recruit regionally is an obvious idea but from our experience this can be very expensive, difficult to track and often does not give a good return-on-investment. Print advertising costs vary depending on the area you are recruiting within, and to research each regional media and source local readership figures is resource heavy”.

“As a company (formerly) under the Virgin umbrella, VIE at home benefits from a great deal of word-of-mouth recommendation and exposure. As a direct sales business a large part of our success is down to word-of-mouth, a strategy we were keen to use when recruiting in order to avoid high recruitment costs”.

With the need for an effective recruitment program capable of recruiting direct sales consultants, a low recruitment budget and the need for efficiency throughout the entire process, eRecruit Solutions was appointed to help manage a national recruitment campaign.

Issues

As a direct sales business, one of the most important issues VIE at home is the efficiency of operations. With a large number of direct sales staff, and a relative small number of back office workers, efficiency is key throughout the business.

Yvonne Clay, Head of Brand at VIE at home comments ”Operational efficiency is crucial to our business and applies equally whether we are dealing with skin care products or recruitment processes. Having to deal with multiple regional media departments, sign numerous advertising contracts and deal with a multitude of different advertising sales executives would have taken hours”.

Instead, VIE at home turned to eRecruit Solutions and Managing Director Dave Morgan. Morgan comments ”One of the many advantages we offer is a single contact point for companies looking to recruit throughout the UK. Rather than dealing with numerous regional media executives we advertise opportunities on a wide range of regional and national job boards, ensuring we reach the widest possible audience throughout the UK for our clients with a single point of contact, saving a lot of time and energy”.

Another important issue for VIE at home was measuring the return-on-investment of the recruitment campaign. As VIE at home was looking to recruit direct sales consultants throughout the country, measuring the number of applications from different regions in the UK and the quality of applications from different regions was very important.

Yvonne Clay explains further “Experience has taught us that using traditional recruitment advertising works well in some areas of the UK, but in others it falls short of the mark. Using eRecruit Solutions for all of our national recruitment and an online recruitment strategy has allowed us to reach the entire country simultaneously and directly measure the number of applications we have received from different geographies”.

Solution

In early 2009 VIE at home approached eRecruit Solutions, an innovative new flat-fee online recruitment business which helps organisations gain optimal exposure for their vacancies across a broad range of online recruitment resources.

VIE at home was recruiting for a number of commission based direct sales consultants throughout the UK and was looking to create a national recruitment campaign to communicate key messages regarding the VIE at home brand, explain the direct sales model and achieve a high number of qualified good quality leads in order to recruit the next generation of VIE at home direct sales consultants throughout the UK.

Dave Morgan, Managing Director of eRecruit Solutions comments “VIE at home needed a national recruitment campaign. With access to a network of hundreds of online job boards including Monster, TotalJobs, Fish4Jobs and Jobsite.co.uk, we were quickly able to draft and upload the opportunity onto a large number of online recruitment sites throughout the country”.

Morgan continues “The vacancy was written and approved within hours and was online for several weeks. It is difficult to put an exact number of the number of jobseekers that read the advertisement but we estimate it to be between 15,000 and 25,000 – a fantastic level of exposure for any business”.

Yvonne Clay, Head of Brand at VIE at home continues the story “Within a few weeks we had received ninety-nine CV s expressing a direct interest in becoming a VIE at home direct sales consultant. From just under one hundred applications received over 40% were deemed ‘highly desirable’ candidates”.

Clay continues “The ability to tap into eRecruit Solutions specialist online recruitment knowledge has saved VIE at home a lot of valuable time and expense. In the past few weeks we have recruited four direct sales consultants. We paid eRecruit Solutions a single flat fee, and the return-on-investment has been fantastic. We estimate we have saved over £6,000 in recruitment advertising costs”.

”New consultants are worth on average many thousands of pounds to the VIE at home business within any one year. The new consultants we have hired through eRecruit Solutions are a fantastic addition to the business. We have compared the use of eRecruit Solutions against other recruitment channels we have previously used and they have they produced the best results and the highest return-on-investment we have seen”.

Dave Morgan comments, “Since eRecruit Solutions began in 2008 we have helped hundreds of companies with their recruitment strategy. We are delighted to have helped a number of direct sales businesses such as VIE at home with their recruitment and look forward to working with them again in the future”.