Blog >> In the Press

Apr '10

Presentation to Henley Business School

Discussion Points

  • The Market
  • Buyers
  • Changing needs of clients
  • Ways of hiring
  • Sellers
  • Things to ponder
  • Structuring a CV
  • Meeting the right people
  • Intermediaries
  • How we see the current market
  • Burden Dare proposition
  • New ways of recruiting
  • Questions
Read the rest
Feb '10

Hurray! We are out of Recession

We are out of recession and it’s official.

The UK economy grew by 0.1% in the quarter to December 2009 and the IMF has revised its forecast for the coming year upwards from 0.9% to 1.3%. In fact they now agree with Alistair Darling who for a little while now has been sticking with a 1.25% growth forecast for 2010 to give him a little bit of credit.

So it’s a cautious but none the less positive start to the New Year.


Further to our bulletin before Christmas we have it confirmed that unemployment is down and underpins the revised forecast that the number will not reach the heady heights of 3m that had been mooted in the earlier part of 2009. The number of unemployed people fell by 7,000 over the quarter falling to 2.46m and is the first quarterly fall in the number of unemployed people since the three months to May 2008.

The number of people claiming Jobseekers allowance in December 2009 fell by 15,200 and is the second consecutive monthly fall in the claimant count. It is also the largest monthly fall since April 2007. The number of vacancies in the three months
to December 2009 was 448,000, up 16,000 compared with the previous quarter, more good news.

British business leaders are the most confident in Europe about employment prospects, with more than half predicting economic recovery will materialise this year, according to the 13th annual Global CEO survey from PricewaterhouseCoopers.… Read the rest

Dec '09

Reasons to be cheerful – parts one, two, three…and four!

`tis the season to be Jolly and boy can we all do with a dose of the season!

What a year! Unprecedented we suggest, doom and gloom has abounded around most of the UK economy but hope is on its way.
Next year is going to be good for four reasons.


The Banks have always led the jobs market by about 18 months, and we are now about 18 months into this, or we will be early next year. We have already seen some job activity in the banking world, in spite of the “Naughty Boy” tax imposed by Mr Darling.

They know by now exactly how much trouble they are in and they have to get back into the lending business which, call me old fashioned, is what they do isn’t it? They have been announcing bumper profits for the second half of this year and they are
cooking up ideas as to how to re-finance their balance sheets which will be sorted by Easter of 2010.

Lloyds Banking Group has already been successful in getting its rights issue away though the City has kept the news very low key for a change. They don’t want to be been to be gloating. This achievement by Lloyds should not be underestimated, it shows the resilience of the London Capital markets who have been through hell this year with demands placed on them from small to gargantuan size companies in need of fresh capital.… Read the rest

Dec '09

“Not Now” Darling!

Is the economy turning the corner or isn’t it?

We hear from Mervyn King that we are on the way back with growth predicted to be 4% in 2011 the Chancellor in his pre-budget announcement reckons between 3.25% and 3.75%; good news for 2011 but what does that mean in the jobs market for 2010?

It does not mean that the number of job opportunities will increase any time soon; the jobless total increased again by 30,000 to just under 2.5m in the quarter to September, thankfully by less than previous quarters but none the less an increase. The Chancellor believes now that the jobless total will not get to 3m which is good but is this political optimism?

The Private Equity community are busy concerning themselves about the mountain of debt they loaded into there investments earlier this millennium that needs refinancing next year at what will be a significantly higher price than they are paying at the moment.

The consequences of this on the viability of those businesses and the effect this will have on employment are yet to be seen. The breakdown of the jobs market is interesting, there are still 29million employed and earning money but there are more people economically inactive than ever before at 8million. The number of 16 to 24 year olds is at a record high of 943,000.… Read the rest

Nov '09

Plug the gap

“Vast changes in the market for interims have led to growth in purchasing’s responsibility for this area of recruitment. Here some suppliers offer advice on points to consider”

Read press clipping from supply magazineRead the rest

Aug '09

Are you a U or are you a W?

The world seems to be split into the U’s and the W’s.

In a recent survey Burden Dare found that the business community is split about equally on whether the latest round of world economic news represented a genuine Upturn in the economy or an artificial bounce that will fall aWay again into another downturn.

The U’s believe the world has pulled through the worst of the recession and, barring a minor hiccup or two, we are now on a path to growth, albeit a slow one to start with.

The W’s believe that the recent round of good news on growth from the likes of France, Germany, and Japan coupled with favourable indicators from the USA and the UK only represent the temporary benefits of the unprecedented injection of spending from the world’s Governments which when not matched by the continued spending from the private sectors will lead to a new downturn in the economy.

So where is the UK in this economic cycle and should we be thinking like U’s or W’s?  Is the latest round of economic news a bit like the Curate’s egg?

And if so does it conform to the original meaning as depicted in George Du Maurier’s Punch cartoon of 1895, that is, because the egg is bad in parts then the whole egg must be by definition rotten or are we to adopt the contemporary view that it is good in parts.… Read the rest

May '09

Trade secrets: Interim management

From Personnel Today May 6 2009

The downturn means huge challenges and tough decisions for managers and staff, from cost-cutting to redundancies. Bringing in expert interim managers could be the answer.

Many senior managers with good track records have never had to manage a business in a recession. They have never been trained to do so, yet are expected to immediately effect a series of measures aimed at enabling their organisation to survive one of the worst economic downturns in international corporate history.

Their minds will be on cost-cutting, restructuring, redundancies, supply chain management, margin maintenance, working capital management, and possibly even the need for short-term funding to bring about these changes. These are all areas that require specialist knowledge and expert deployment.

An experienced interim manager of 15 years’ standing will have managed during two recessions already. They will be a specialist in their field and will be able to focus on delivering results. If you needed a back operation, you would ask your GP to refer you to an expert surgeon – the same principle should be true in the corporate world. Bring in a specialist.

Interim benefits

Interim managers are independent and have no axe to grind. They are only as good as their last job, and need excellent references to continue practising, so you can be confident they will give you their best.… Read the rest

Jan '09

Do Senior Managers have the skills and experience to manage through a recession? Not necessarily

Press Release

“In these difficult times don’t be afraid to ask for help” says Gary Ward of Burden Dare.

‘Just be careful who you ask. There are lots’ of people out there who will offer you advice for a price but in my experience it’s action now that is needed not a report that lands on your desk, marked ‘Draft’, in two months time.”

He goes on to say:

“Many Senior Managers with good track records have never had to manage a business in times such as these. They have never been trained to do so and yet are expected to immediately effect a series of measures aimed at enabling the company to survive through what is rapidly becoming one of the worst economic downturns in corporate memory.”

“Their minds will be turned towards cost cutting, restructuring, redundancies, supply chain management, margin maintenance, working capital management and possibly even the need for short term funding to bring about these changes.”

“Those managers who do not have this experience to hand may be thinking of turning to their auditors for support from one of their technical or management consulting arms, but at what cost?

These people are expensive and many are career advisors equally unused to managing a real business in a downturn; in times like these are they realistically what business needs?”

“By contrast Interim managers have all achieved success in delivering tangible benefits in the corporate world – they come in to do a job; they can write reports if you want them to but their focus is hands on delivery.… Read the rest

Dec '08

Hiring a Friend of a Friend

Companies are putting themselves at three major risks if they hire a “friend of a friend” as a stop-gap interim manager in a recession says Gavan Burden, Manager of Burden Dare Ltd, one of the leading providers of interim management in the UK.

“We all appreciate the need to keep costs to a minimum in tough times, but we must also make sure that we don’t make false economies”.  He continues “Hiring a friend of a friend can end in serious tears as there are three major risks hiring friends of colleagues on self styled interim contracts:-

  1. Employment law is becoming increasingly more complex and increasingly hiring companies run the risk of allowing themselves to look like a “permanent” employer to the tax man.  This can have disastrous consequences for PAYE and NI on the one hand and employee benefits, including sick pay and severance on the other.
  2. Are the candidates adequately referenced?  Do they actually have the skills?  This key area is never one for a short cut and the consequences don’t bear thinking about.
  3. If the candidate is really looking for a permanent job then, understandably, they will opt for a safer future if the opportunity presents itself with minimum notice, possibly immediately, irrespective of the consequences for the client and the introducer.”

“Denis Healey’s First Law of Holes is that when you are in one, stop digging, and clients will do well to heed that advice!… Read the rest

Dec '08

Distinguishing between managers and management consultants

We are sometimes asked to distinguish between the skills and capabilities of management consultants from one of the big professional service firms and their close cousins, interim managers.  The popular perception of a branded management consultant is of a high flyer, with a good brain and sound business training. An interim manager, by contrast, is thought to be of a lower capability, mainly because they are sole traders without a brand.

Maybe this was once true, but now interim management is becoming a career of choice for successful managers and former consultants, particularly those who are action, project or change oriented. Successful businessmen and women, perhaps disenchanted with corporate politics, or promoted up and away from a role they really enjoy, are increasingly turning to a life of interim roles; frequently many will have been trained by one of the consultancy firms.  There is, however, a distinct difference between specialist interim managers and consultancy employees acting in an interim capacity.  This paper sets out some of the implication of these differences.

Why use Management Consultants?

Many companies use back-fill resource from consultancy firms because it’s easy and familiar.  In spite of popular perception of questionable delivery, consulting firms can rapidly mobilise teams of people to address complex issues, and if more resources are needed, they can usually provide that too.  They take the problem away from the company and provide one solution: – but at a cost.… Read the rest

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