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Gangmasters Licensing Authority

Proud Sponsors

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Western Gazette Pride Awards are designed to celebrate unsung heroes who go the extra mile to make a difference in the community. The categories include the Public Sector Hero award which will be given to someone who consistently goes above and beyond the call of duty.

This section is sponsored by Octopus Personnel, a recruitment firm with offices in Gillingham and at the Innovation Centre in Yeovil.

Director Sandra Smart explained what it is that makes the Pride Awards so special. She said: “There are so many things people do that aren’t recognized, it’s not about the big things that you hear about on TV but the little day to day things that just don’t get noticed".

The businesswoman is a great believer in awards to celebrate ordinary people’s contributions in the community. She said: “There are a lot of awards like this on a national level but it’s important for us to have local awards too".

“It will be very humbling. These are people who are not businesses and who don’t shout from the rooftops, but for some of these things we should be shouting from the rooftops".


Welcome back Kerry!!

We are delighted to welcome back Kerry to our Gillingham Office. Many of you will remember Kerry from her time here just over a year ago. Kerry took a break to enjoy some quality time with her family and is now back with Octopus to take care of all of the timesheets and payroll needs for all of the offices. We are sure that you will all join us in giving Kerry a warm welcome back to the team!

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Octopus Personnel Extends it's Tentacles for Cancer Research

Octopus Personnel Extends it’s Tentacles for Cancer Research The Octopus Personnel Team joined forces to take part in Bournemouth’s ‘Race for Life’ to help raise awareness, fundraising and support for Cancer Research. Clad in pink vests and accompanied by the company mascot ‘Ozzy the Octopus’ they combined with thousands of other runners and walkers on a beautiful Sunday morning to lend their...

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Ozzy helps the Tadworth Childrens Trust

Sunday 13th April saw the annual children’s day at Wincanton Racecourse and what a glorious day for it! The days itself was filled with fun activities for children from a bucking bronco to a clown and there was even Shetland Racing to kick the day off in the paddock. However, one thing that nobody would expect to see at Wincanton Racecourse on a sunny afternoon was Ozzy and all of his friends ready to battle it...

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How to afford the car of your dreams!

The main talking point of The Chancellor, George Osborne's budget concerned the scrapping of the requirement for those with defined contribution pensions to buy an annuity. Instead they will receive free advice to enable them to decide what is best for them regarding their pension savings. This would allow people to take a big chunk of their savings pot to spend early in their retirement. The taxable part of...

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The Traveller Returns

The Traveller Returns - Many of our clients and candidates will remember Emma Purcell from the time she spent working in our busy Gillingham office at the beginning of last year. Since then Emma has managed to fulfil a long held ambition by spending a few months travelling. Having returned to 'Blighty' with the travel bug well and truly out of her system we're delighted to confirm that she will be joining...

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Good News!

Highs and Lows! Unemployment in the UK unexpectedly fell by 0.3% to 7.1% in the 3 months to January. This is a far bigger drop than economists were predicting who were expecting a more modest fall to 7.3%. Despite the unemployment rate being close to the level at which it indicated it would consider hiking interest rates, the Bank of England says it has no immediate plans to raise them. A member of the...

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Make Octopus your New Year's resolution

Monday 6th January was expected to be one of the UK's busiest recruitment days of the year with about 20% of the total workforce putting the Christmas festivities behind them by sending their CVs to recruiters and applying for new jobs. January is always a hectic time in the recruitment market as many people reflect on their career prospects over the holiday period with some even making finding a new job their...

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Seasons Greetings

At this time of year, it’s a pleasure to pause and say thank you to the many people who have helped make this year so rewarding. Our success has exceeded our wildest expectations and enabled us to strengthen the team by appointing a new recruitment consultant and I’m sure you’ll join us in welcoming Ali Burridge to the team. 2014 also promises to be an exciting year, as we build on our reputation as...

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A Massive Well Done to the Boys

Octopus Personnel were delighted to sponsor a 110 mile Tandem Bike Ride which started on 13th October 2013. Rotarians Peter Cook and Roland Martin embarked on a sponsored Tandem ride around Dorset in aid of Diabetes UK and local Rotary charities. They decided on Diabetes UK as Peter is diabetic and being Rotarians they wanted to support local rotary charities as well. They purchased the tandem in August and...

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The Moon's a Balloon

Octopus Personnel's 'balloon race' at the Gillingham and Shaftesbury Show which resulted in hundreds of balloons being released up into the Dorset summer evening skies has raised the sum of £350 for the Cystic FibrosisTrust. This year's winning entry took a south easterly route, travelling more than 700 miles before finally ending up in the heartlands of Germany. The owner of Octopus, Sandra Smart who is pictured...

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Octopus Building for the Future

We've been overwhelmed by the warm welcome extended to us by the local community and businesses since we opened our new office in Bournemouth earlier this year. What is especially pleasing is the successes we've already had in forming solid relationships with new clients and finding work for an ever increasing number of candidates. To ensure we maintain our excellent service standards, we're already expanding our...

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Freshers Fair Bournemouth Uni

The Octopus Personnel team from Bournemouth had a great day at Bournemouth University Fresher’s Fair on Saturday 28th September. The rain held off which was an added bonus. The team were there to sign up students for work opportunities while they are studying over the next two or three years. There was an added incentive; the opportunity to win a Students Survival Box of goodies which included must have items...

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Up, up and away!

Up, up and away! For the first time in a few years we were able to leave our wellies and umbrellas at home and show off our favourite t shirts and shorts as the sun shone on a fun packed Gillingham and Shaftesbury Show. The Octopus Team were out in force and aided and abetted by our very own Ozzy the Octopus we set about holding a balloon race in aid of the Cystic Fibrosis Trust. After a busy day promoting...

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Gillingham & Shaftesbury Show 2013

Its that time of year again! Hopefully we wont need our wellies this year We are looking forward to seeing as many of you as possible at our stand - come and see us for a glass of Pimms and buy a balloon. We are supporting the Cystic Fibrosis Trust by holding a balloon race. £150 prize for the balloon that travels the furthest. We are delighted that Mail & Print have also come on-board and have...

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OCTOPUS PERSONNEL PRESENT £500 CHEQUE TO CYSTIC FIBROSIS CHARITY

Last month a team of 5 employees called “The Dorset Dawdlers and Somerset Strollers”, from Markus Products in Wincanton, took part in “Great Strides 65” – a 40 mile walk from Guildford to Shoreham-By-Sea along the north Downs Way and Downs Link. The walk, to raise funds for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust took the team 13.5 hours to complete, starting at 7.00am and getting them a well earned cup of tea at the...

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Bournemouth Branch - Opening Soon

We are delighted to announce we will be celebrating the launch of a new office in the busy Moordown area of Bournemouth on 8th April. Octopus has gained an unrivalled reputation for providing high quality recruitment solutions to an impressive array of satisfied clients time and again. The new branch complements Octopus’s existing offices in Gillingham and Yeovil and represents the next step in the...

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Budget 2013 – “The Aspiration Nation”

The Chancellor, George Osborne unveiled a string of moves designed to cut the cost of living as he admitted the economy is still struggling. He confirmed that the growth forecasts have been cut in half to 0.6% and acknowledged that the recovery was taking far longer than expected. He said this year’s budget was for ‘the aspiration nation’ and revealed that the income tax threshold will rise to £10,000...

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Government Responds to Independent Review on Health at Work

The Government has accepted many of the recommendations made by an independent review of sickness absence and has announced it will introduce a new Health and Work Assessment and Advisory Service in 2014. This will provide a state funded occupational health assessment for employees who have been off work for more than four weeks and any employees failing to engage with the process will not be issued with any...

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Over-50s Doing it Their Way

Figures published by the Office for National Statistics reveal that there was an increase of 367,000 in the number of self-employed workers between 2008 and 2012, taking the total to 4.2 million. The fastest growth occurred during the past two years and the over-50s accounted for 84% of the increase. Despite the increase in self employment the jobs market contracted during the same period with the total number of...

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What impact could the Autumn Statement 2012 have on your busines

As expected the Autumn Statement delivered by George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer wasn’t particularly optimistic given the country’s difficult economic position. However, there were some important and positive messages for small and medium sized enterprises despite continuing austerity measures. Fuel Welcome news is that the dreaded 3p-a-litre increase in fuel duty, planned for early 2013,...

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Min Wage Increase

As announced by the government earlier this year the national minimum wage will rise by 11p to £6.19 an hour from 1 October, a rise of 1.8% from the current level, although it will remain unchanged for workers under the age of 21. The freeze in the minimum wage for those aged under 21 means that from 1 October: • The rate for 18 to 20-year-olds will remain at £4.98 an hour • The rate for 16 and...

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Gillingham & Shaftsbury Show

The Gillingham & Shaftesbury Show provided the Octopus team with a great opportunity to meet the local public and also offered the perfect stage for unveiling Octopus’s new mascot for whom we were seeking a name. We received lots of suggestions before settling on Ozzy, which earned Isaac Southwood a small prize for his idea. Although we received a real soaking in the morning, as promised by the weather men...

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Gangmasters Licence Awarded

Following a demanding assessment process, we were recently delighted to receive confirmation that we had been awarded a Gangmasters Licence by the Gangmasters Licencing Authority. Our licence can be viewed on the following website:- www.gla.gov.uk our licence number is OCTO0001. The GLA audit was a huge success and we passed with flying colours. This is a great achievement and shows our commitment and...

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Royal Mail has announced an increase in the price of stamps

The Royal Mail has announced an increase in the price of stamps which will come into effect from 30 April 2012. The prices of First and Second Class stamps for a standard letter increase from 46p to 60p and from 36p to 50p respectively. In addition, the cost of a Large Letter stamp (up to 100 grams) rises from 75p to 90p for First Class and from 58p to 69p for Second Class. The Royal Mail's service standards in...

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April 2012 employment law changes

Every April a host of changes are made to employment legislation and 2012 is no different. This year, important amendments include those relating to unfair dismissal and statutory maternity and sick pay. The following are four of the key reforms that will affect employers. Statutory maternity, paternity, adoption and sick pay increase On 1 April 2012, the weekly rate of statutory maternity, paternity and...

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ScottishPower adds 300 jobs, seeks new talent with £6.5m fund

Energy firm Scottish Power is investing £5bn in the Central and Southern Scotland electricity network in the next 10 years, and creating 300 new roles in the coming years. The roles include full-time system design roles, high-voltage, direct current (HVDC) development jobs, and transmission and distribution engineers. They also include around 50 new apprenticeships, with the graduate scheme at the company also...

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CIPD suggests unemployment to rise in 2012

Official figures showed that the UK unemployment hit its highest level since 1994 in the three months to October, when it rose by 128,000 to 2.64 million. According to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development unemployment is set to rise during 2012 and will peak at 2.85m in 2013. It also suggests the private sector will fail to offset the 120,000 jobs lost in the public sector during 2012, but is...

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UK unemployment increases to 2.64m

UK unemployment stands at its highest level since 1994 as it rose by 128,000 in the three months to October to 2.64 million. According to The Office for National Statistics the jobless rate increased by 0.4% from the previous quarter to 8.3%. Youth unemployment now stands at 1.027 million, the highest since records began in 1992, rising to 22% in the three months to October from 20.8% three months earlier. More...

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Employment law: what some of the planned changes could mean

Employment law reforms planned for implementation in 2012 are designed to make it easier for businesses to hire, manage and dismiss staff. Among the changes proposed are a loss of unfair dismissal rights, quicker lay-offs and changes to tribunal entitlement. Employees are currently entitled to make a tribunal claim against their employer if they have worked for that employer for one year. From April 2012 this...

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UK unemployment increases to 2.62m

Unemployment in the UK rose by 129,000 in the three months to September to 2.62 million, as youth unemployment rose above a million. According to The Office for National Statistics (ONS) the unemployment rate has risen to 8.3%. The number of jobless people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance rose by 5,300 to 1.6 million in October. The unemployment rate of 8.3% is the highest since 1996 and the total number of...

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Winner Of Our Balloon Race

Aden Ottewill was the owner of the winning balloon in our balloon race. His balloon travelled an impressive 238 miles. Aden is pictured receiving his £200 prize money with Managing Director Sandra Smart.

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Blown Away

To celebrate the launch of their new brand, Gillingham & Yeovil based, Octopus Personnel recently held an open day and also marked the occasion by holding a 'balloon race' which raised £500 for Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance. The balloon travelling the furthest reached Ipswich in East Anglia, a staggering 238 miles away, earning the winning 'owner' and 'finder' £200 and £50 respectively. Director Sandra...

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First balloon found 150 miles away!

How excited were we this morning to have received an email with knowledge of one of our balloons whereabouts. The balloon was found in Hertfordshire at 10.00 a.m Sunday morning. The whole office is looking forward to hearing more news on the balloons travels.

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Gillingham Office Launch

The Gillingham branch of Octopus Personnel is now offically open! We started the day with an offical opening from the Major of Gillingham, David Milsted. Then enjoyed drinks and a buffet with everyone that came to help celebrate the day. Once the rain stopped we released hundreds of balloons into the skies of Gillingham for our balloon race.... we can't wait to see how far they travel!

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Gillingham and Shaftesbury Show

Well the day started off with glorious sunshine and ended as it has done for the past three years with a down pour of rain... but the Octopus Team are never ones to have their spirits dampened and we were out in force giving away Pimms and selling tickets for our balloon race with all proceeds going to Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance. We would like to say a HUGE thank you to all those who showed their...

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Agency Workers Regulations

Agency workers make up about 4% of the UK workforce and the new regulations - set to come into force in October – will give agency workers the same rights on basic working and employment conditions as those in equivalent permanent jobs. The regulations will apply to most workers who are provided by an agency to a hiring company Temporary agency labour is a vital part of an organisations flexibility and...

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JOB exhibition 2011

Recruitment is about people and finding the right person for the right job. If you want to meet a team who are confident that they will be able to make searching for temporary or permanent work far less stressful for you come along to the Job exhitition at Westland Sports & Social Complex on Thursday 12th May from 9am. As soon as you register with us, we can start searching for that ideal role. We pride...

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Proud Sponsors

The Western Gazette Pride Awards are designed to celebrate unsung heroes who go the extra mile to make a difference in the community. The categories include the Public Sector Hero award which will be given to someone who consistently goes above and beyond the call of duty. This section is sponsored by Octopus Personnel, a recruitment firm with offices in Gillingham and at the Innovation Centre in Yeovil....

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Superdrug to Recruit Apprentices

Superdrug is to recruit more than 500 new apprentices onto its Apprenticeship scheme in 2011. Currently, more than 400 learners are on Superdrug’s parent company, AS Watson’s, Apprenticeship programme with the programme open to all colleagues who have been with the business for at least three months, and work a minimum of 16 hours a week, giving employees a chance to ‘learn while you earn’. Jo...

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Challenging economic climate

Today’s figures indicating a rise in unemployment is not surprising, given significant cuts to public sector jobs, according to Charles Logan, director at Hays. UK unemployment rose by 49,000 to almost 2.5m in the quarter to November, but the number of people claiming unemployment benefit for December fell, according to figures from the Office for National Statistics. Claimant numbers dropped by 4,100...

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Stress Cited As Biggest Workplace Hazard

Stress is the biggest concern to workers in the South West, according to a new survey of safety representatives carried out by the TUC. The biennial survey asked workplace reps to identify the main hazards to their staff. More than two-thirds of respondents (68%) in the South West put stress at the top of the list. This was followed by poor display equipment (38%), slips and trips (38%), back strain (32%) and...

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