Lyndsey Grima talks to Martin Spiteri, Chief Operations Officer at M Recruitment, about equal opportunities and bringing the right talent on board.
Operating successfully for the past ten years, M Recruitment is responsible for two types of recruitment: direct and outsourcing. With the former, clients approach them as a recruiting company to look for suitable candidates for the job. With outsourcing, M Recruitment employs staff on a full-time basis. which they then outsource to clients, also on a full-time basis.
“Outsourcing is a big part of our business,” says Martin. “It’s most common in the hospitality, catering, care, and retail industries.
We ensure that our staff is limited to a few hundred, not more, so it is manageable, and we can assist and support clients in the same way as if the employees were on our premises.“
Like other agencies, M Recruitment attracts several third-country nationals, mainly from Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Qatar to name a few.
The difference with this agency is that it works hard to find the right people for the right jobs.
Martin explains that all candidates go through an online interview process. “Once we see that the candidate in question fits in with what our various clients want, then we give a job offer.
We use several criteria to select a candidate that is right for that job role. We also invite the client to do an online interview with the candidate. If the interview goes well, we inform the candidate that they have been chosen. The individual then begins a process in which we apply for their work permit.
Once this is approved, the person applies for a visa, usually hands in their resignation from the job that they are working at, and then begins travelling to Malta.“
The process does not stop there. The staff at M Recruitment also guides candidates on where to look for accommodation to make it more convenient for them to settle in.
They also send all chosen employees a relocation checklist to make their journey as smooth as possible. Once they arrive on the island, individuals are given a full orientation session at the agency’s office to finalise the remaining details.
“As opposed to many stories we’re hearing, M Recruitment does not charge anyone any money for finding a job through our agency,” claims Martin. “It is illegal to do so.”
Our service to candidates is free, both through direct recruitment and outsourcing. The clients pay our fees. The same goes for the subcontracted work-we do not charge any fees. In addition, any third-country nationals we bring to the island are not charged any money for this service. We charge a minimal processing fee to settle their work permit and visa.“
Martin explains how there have been countless sad stories of people coming from countries like Dubai who have been charged up to €5,000 by companies to get a job on the island.
“This is white slavery, and it is completely unfair. These people are coming here for a better future and starting immediately on the wrong foot.”
We completely CONDEMN this sort of abuse. We bring over people based on the right attributes and personalities, irrespective of race, ethnicity, and gender.”
Martin also highlights the fact that this brings about another obstacle. If an individual can afford to pay €5,000 to come to Malta for work, you are simply bringing in people who can afford it and not basing the individual on talent. “We are faced with employees who do not possess the characteristics that the industry needs.
The industry is flooded with inexperienced people simply because they can afford the fees. M Recruitment hires people based on their talent, experience, knowledge, and capabilities.“
Being an ethical employer, M Recruitment does its best to find the right talent for the local market. “We hear a lot of complaints, from locals, especially on social media, that we are seeing fewer and fewer locals and Europeans working, especially in the catering industry.
People don’t realise, though, that Maltese and Europeans are losing interest in the industry for various reasons. Unfortunately, the wages being paid in the industry are not competitive when compared to other markets in Europe, but it is not the case that the industry wants cheap labour.
The margins are minimal, and with the current salary structure on the island, restaurants and hotels cannot afford to go above that structure, meaning that they cannot attract good European talent.“
M Recruitment does its best to find the best talent to serve its clients. “Most of the people we get have experience in the four- and five-star hotel industry or upmarket restaurants and cafes.
They have already been exposed to a Western culture, which makes it much easier for them to integrate and be happy here. Our main aim is to help people find a career in Malta, not just a job, so that they can be happy here.“
M Recruitment aims to prioritise its employees’ mental and physical health. “We care for all our staff equally, and we have made wellness our priority this year regarding our office staff.
A weekly gym session is being organised in collaboration with I&J Fitness Team Gym and Team Sport to allow the whole team to train together, making a healthier lifestyle accessible for everyone. In addition, for all our outsourced staff, we give them a birthday card and a voucher to dine at one of our clients’ establishments, thus supporting our clients further.“
M Recruitment ‘s role as an agency continues even after the contract expires.
Martin explains that when the staff contracts are close to ending, the agency either speaks to the client to see if they are happy with the candidate and will ask for a salary increase for them, or they see if the client would like to take them on directly as their employees, which generally means a promotion and career growth for the employee.
“We are proud to say that when we walk into our clients’ establishments today, their supervisors, managers, sous chefs, and head chefs are people we brought in in junior positions. We help them build their careers here. These little things might not seem significant, but they can change people’s lives. We are not here to offer people a job for a year. On average, 70% of our staff each year works with our clients directly. We give them careers that give them pride, and we take pride in that. It’s one of our biggest achievements.”