I'm in-depth understanding
I'm Robert Walters
Before starting my career in recruitment with Robert Walters in 2012, I was a legal practitioner in both Hong Kong and Malaysia. The opportunity for a career transition came about serendipitously; at the time, I was only looking for roles within the legal industry, so I contacted Robert Walters to see if they could help. The management team, however, saw that I had relevant legal and corporate work experience in both Hong Kong and Malaysia, so they got in touch for a chat.
During that first chat, I was asked if I would consider joining Robert Walters to start up a specialist legal recruitment desk. The idea piqued my interest — I'd wanted more autonomy in my career and was looking for a change, although I admit I was fairly sceptical at the beginning due to my lack of recruitment experience. However, during a tour of the Kuala Lumpur office, I caught a glimpse of the vibrant and dynamic culture at Robert Walters, and I instantly knew it would be the right place for me.
My previous experience as a legal practitioner has really helped me in my recruitment career. A number of times my clients have commented that I really understand the sort of candidates that they’re looking for, and I would credit that to my industry knowledge and background. Due to my industry experience, I am able to speak the same language as my clients and candidates, and this allows me to relate to them better. My experience of working abroad has also been really beneficial, as it has allowed me to cultivate a wider awareness of different and dynamic working cultures. As a result, this makes it easier for me to identify good matches between an employer and candidate, shortening the recruitment process for our clients.
Since joining in 2012, I have been promoted three times, ultimately taking on my current role as manager of the legal and corporate secretarial division. Along with the promotion to manager, I was given the opportunity to grow the legal and corporate secretarial desk further, and I now have two direct reports in my team.
I have also achieved significant personal growth over the years. When I first joined Robert Walters, I was fairly reserved and timid, but my management team have been really supportive, and over the years, they have helped me build my confidence levels and soft skills professionally — especially to develop a growth mindset. This has been achieved through a combination of formal training and regular feedback sessions, which have helped me to maintain a clear view of my goals, as well as benchmark my success.
I am proud to say that I have managed to achieve 'top biller' twice during my time at Robert Walters. I also qualified for the company’s global Incentive Weekend trips in both 2017 and 2018. Each year, top performers are rewarded with a trip to a luxurious location — it’s a hard goal to achieve and I’m grateful to have qualified two years in a row.
Today, I’m still passionate about the business and my portfolio, and I really enjoy the autonomy and diversity that I get from my work. It’s really exciting to work with different candidates and clients — it means each day is filled with new challenges and opportunities. I love being able to interact with people from all walks of life and help them fulfil their potential.
The ever-evolving nature of the legal and corporate secretarial landscape also makes it an exciting space to work in. In the past, we saw employers relying heavily on external legal counsels, given how the legal function was seen as a ‘cost centre’ to most companies, but in recent years, we noticed a shift with employers now being more inclined to work with professional recruitment agencies when recruiting for in-house legal counsels and corporate secretaries (given the niche area of specialisation) to ensure corporate governance. To be able to assist companies in identifying the right fit during such a transition period is very fulfilling, as I am able to witness how my work is impacting both individuals and businesses.
To individuals considering an exciting career in recruitment, I would say Robert Walters has a strong reputation globally and this encourages both candidates and clients, especially passive jobseekers, to engage with us. Moreover, our work culture is great; the company offers a great and dynamic working environment with loads of exposure and learning opportunities. We also function as a close-knit family with a strong sense of camaraderie across teams. This is an environment where we are constantly challenged to learn and grow, which means there are no limits to where your career can take you.
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