Katie Harding takes time out to explain what marks Parkwood Healthcare from the competition. Along the way, Katie throws in some advice for applying for nursing jobs, preparing for the job search, and writing your CV. About Matt Farrah - follow me on Google+

Parkwood has clinical nursing jobs (Cardiac ICU nurse jobs), but also plenty of community nursing jobs (CPN jobs) and jobs for Support Workers. Do you see a big future in social care recruitment?

With the focus on community nursing and the personalisation agenda it is inevitable that recruitment within the social care sector will see an increase over the next 12 months.

Where are the key shortages at the moment - what kinds of skills are in most demand?

We have an excellent bank of qualified and reliable staff across the board with various skills sets. However the main shortage at the moment seems to be Community Nurses in London and general nurses in the East of England area.

Parkwood Healthcare is on the NHS Framework Agreement. What does this mean and what benefits does this bring nursing jobseekers? (You’re saying this for the benefit of job seekers).

The NHS will only use agencies on the framework, Parkwood Healthcare have been supplying the NHS across the UK for a number of years.

We currently supply to a number of NHS trusts and our dedicated business development team have a continued focus on establishing service level agreements with other organisations within the NHS

Registering with Parkwood Healthcare will maximise the opportunity for work in the NHS.

We try hard on to offer plenty of CV writing advice. What makes a good CV, from your point of view?

Keeping it simple is key; don’t be tempted to use an elaborate typeface and/or a fussy layout with pictures etc. Focus on the quality of the information. Equally there’s no need for a CV to be 5 pages long, list the employers that are relevant.

Highlighting your key skills, responsibilities and achievements. You can expand on your work history later; a good interviewer will go into the intricacies at a face-to-face interview.

Spelling and grammatical errors are simply not acceptable – your CV is your opportunity to introduce yourself to an employer, make sure that introduction is a professional one.

Is there something a candidate would do well to consider (during the application process) helping them find the most suitable job?

It’s the conscientious candidates that always stand out for me, the ones that keep in contact, ask for updates, feedback and advice.

These are the candidates that are passionate about what they do and in finding the right job. These are the candidates that fuel my passion to do that for them.

When you interview face-to-face, what are you looking for?

We communicate with our candidates what is required at an interview well in advance, so the minimum we would expect is that a candidate attends the interview and is well prepared, for example, they have all the relevant documentation that we have requested, they know their CV and can explain any gaps, they know what they are looking for and what availability they have.

Obviously things such as good personal presentation, punctuality and communication should never be underestimated.

Although agency interviews tend to be informal, it’s imperative that you treat them with the same professionalism and importance you would that of a direct employer.

Some candidates feel that a few rogue agencies let the industry down - unreturned calls, over-eager consultants too hungry to find candidates, whatever the cost. Parkwood is different of course. What ingredients make a great nursing recruitment agency?

In today’s tough economy unfortunately the main focus for many companies is generating revenue. Businesses that are targeted purely on their financial achievements are where you will find the pushy consultants and often-aggressive approach.

Fortunately Parkwood Healthcare is part of a wider group, Parkwood Holdings; Parkwood’s financial strength enables the continuous investment in its business and employees and is fully committed to its codes of practice, social responsibilities and the delivery of quality public services.

At Parkwood Healthcare our focus is on quality and compliance, we seek continuous improvement in all that we do through best practice methodologies, we value honesty, integrity and good manners and ensure that we work with like minded individuals – this approach ensures the success of our business and we continue to grow.

We see ourselves as a healthcare provider not a recruitment agency our business. Parkwood is run by healthcare professionals and highly qualified business managers. Our consultants and managers do not work on a commission basis but are targeted on quality and service.

We work as part of a close-knit team to ensure that we deliver a balanced, ethical and professional service to all of our users. We insist on best practice as standard.

We are passionate about providing an approachable and friendly service we strive to create an environment that promotes innovation and staff development.