By Lindsey Turnbull
The Health Services Authority’s first ever Recruitment Fair was held last Friday at the George Town Hospital and, most likely as an indication of the difficult economic times the Islands currently face, turn out exceeded all expectations of the organisers. The Fair created an opportunity for job hunters to meet and chat with industry experts about the latest vacancies, and gain valuable experience interviewing and networking professionally with HSA recruitment experts. Samantha Bennett, Chief Human Resources Officer at HSA, said it was also an opportunity for the Human Resources Team to attract and recruit skilled, high-quality potential candidates to fill the vacant positions within their organisation.
Although this was the first event of its kind, organisers say they plan another one fairly soon.
“It was the first ever event of which we had a great turnout…we may plan to do the event again in six months,” Ms Bennett advised. “We felt that this attempt of reaching applicants through an event such as this certainly paid off. We knew there would be great interest but not at this level. Almost 560 people turned out and registered within the Fair.”
The Health Services Authority has a broad range of needs when it comes to personnel and so entry level, unskilled, semi-skilled and professional roles within the clinical area were all available for application by interested parties.
Ms Bennett confirmed that the most popular jobs for those attending the Fair were probably in the entry level and semi-skilled areas, jobs such as porters, housekeeping, registration officers and switchboard operators.
She went on to say that skill and qualification levels of those seeking work matched well with the jobs on offer. In addition, Ms Bennett said they were very excited with the turnout of people of which more than 300 were Caymanians who registered at the event. Some were currently employed, some unemployed, and some were just looking for a career change or better options.
“Our priority is to place qualified Caymanians in posts firstly,” she confirmed.
Having taken down information from each interested party, organisers are now busy entering all of the applications and registrations within their database and then they intend to make contact with applicants based on their skill set and applications. They will contact those people over the next coming weeks and months as they schedule interviews.
One such job seeker was Lloyd Campbell who advised he was looking for maintenance, plumbing, sheet rock and cabinetry jobs, having worked as a carpenter, mason and plumber. Another job seeker, Ms Rankin, had worked in a pre-school for ten years and said that was really where her passion lay. She said she would not mind working as a house keeper at the hospital.
“I loved working with young children but I’m looking for housekeeping. Whatever my hands can do, I will turn my hands to it,” she said.
Young job seeker Lydia Solomon had worked as a cashier but was currently unemployed. She said she really wanted to be a pediatrician.
Ms Solomon thought the Recruitment Fair was a great idea.
“It gives opportunities for people who haven’t had work and who’ve been looking for employment but can’t find a job matching their qualifications. I think it’s a great opportunity and I am really pleased that the hospital is doing it because we really need it. We have children and grandchildren. I hope to get employment out of this and also hope to get the chance to further my education as well,” she said.