Like a lot of good ideas, Remarkable People was born out of a pub where a few mates were “thinking about how we were going to take over the world and all that sort of thing.”
In past lives, those who started the Queenstown-based recruiting company had employed a lot of people, whether through security and hotel companies, or trade and construction.
They decided to take what they had learned in these companies – instead of limiting it to a small market – and do it in a general market.
Remarkable Labor, as it was originally called, started in Queenstown in 2016.
Everything went well and after about a year it was decided to expand “from the bottom of the country to the top, rather than the other way of doing it for most people”, he said. said Remarkable Group Managing Director Blair McNaughton.
Earlier this year, the name was changed to Remarkable People. Traditionally founded in trades and construction, they found that many of their clients had other needs to fill, outside of those industries, so Remarkable People was more what it did.
It now had 10 offices across the country and provided staff across the country from permanent and temporary staff to contract staff, placing everyone from qualified accountants to someone in need of a laborer at a site during a few hours. Staff were also provided in Australia and a new joint venture in Sydney would open Remarkable People Australia.
Remarkable People placed 28th on the Deloitte Fast 50 index and while it was “definitely a good race” there had been some bumps along the road as well, McNaughton said.
It had been a “fairly difficult” two years for the company; the first Covid-19 lockdown saw revenue plummet rapidly, but it identified which industries were classified as critical and could continue to operate. He was successful in redeploying staff into these roles, connections in the security sector also helped and brought turnover down to 30-40% from where it was.
Things like the government wage subsidy meant they were able to keep 95% of the staff on board during that time. So when they could come back in force, they could do so “fairly quickly”.
The experience had taught some lessons in business about resilience and making sure there was money in the bank. The Auckland team were busier than ever.
“It has shown us to never rest on our laurels… to continue to constantly develop ourselves,” said Mr. NcNaughton.
He was looking at things like online options and apps to see where to go next. It had been ‘a lot of fun’ and they had a good team, some of whom had been with them from the start.
“We are young, we are hungry, we hope that we are a nice place to work. “
Mr McNaughton came to Queenstown in 2002 to ski for a season while his business partner Edward Stott came from UK 10 to do an OE and they met while working for Allied Security. Neither had left the complex.
It had been both fun and exciting without two identical days. There had been little time to reflect on the success of the business and so things like acknowledging Deloitte made a good time to pause to acknowledge having done a good job, he said.
He had friends in Queenstown who owned hotel and tourism businesses and had seen their struggles during Covid-19.
“Having a few successes in Queenstown is probably not a bad thing,” he said.
Adversity was an opportunity to “put your thinking back and see what you can do,” he said.
It was sad to see Queenstown right now – certainly the quietest he’s ever seen – as he described it as like tumbleweeds blowing through the streets, but he remained optimistic.
“It will come back, Queenstown will always be there, it will always be beautiful, people will always come to visit us,” he said.