From freelancer to Business Unit Manager – Karolina Opaczynska

Do you want to grow as a recruiter? Complete additional projects after hours and recruit in a variety of industries! Karolina Opaczynska, IT recruiter and Business Unit Manager at Talent Place, talked about freelancing while working as a full-time employee, communication within the network of HR experts and development opportunities for recruiters in the Community.

What was your career path before you came to Talent Place?

I started my professional career at college. I worked at a recruitment agency in Zielona Gora. I was there for almost two years, and then I wanted to grow in a larger organization. So I moved on to another company, where I conducted recruitments for various positions: IT, quality or marketing related. Then I decided to move to Warsaw and that’s when I found myself working strictly with IT. Since then, I have continued to work in the industry: recruiting, onboarding, and evaluations, and I am responsible for employer branding and strategy.

What made you decide to join the Talent Place Community?

I heard about Talent Place from my first employer. He said there was a platform of recruiters and asked me to see if it was something for me. So I went to the Talent Place website and applied. Especially since I had a lot of free time in the afternoons due to the pandemic. I thought: why not take advantage of this and have the opportunity to earn extra money, when you can’t go out much anyway? And I went into it. Initially, I thought of taking on marketing projects, because I was doing well with them while I was still in Zielona Gora. Later, however, I got a client in the IT area that played well, so I stayed with similar projects.

What concerns did you have about joining the recruiting community?

For me, it was a little unclear at first how the collaboration model itself works. I thought it would be that I would go to the website, look at some recruitment, see that there are job opportunities and propose my candidate, without any participation in client meetings or at all. In fact, I was more concerned about balancing freelance work with full-time work than joining the Community, especially since I had taken on a large project to start working with Talent Place. But working remotely makes it possible to adjust all activities to the calendar, so I managed it. Especially since you can also join smaller projects, then there is no need to worry about “catching up with the schedule”. This flexibility allows you to smoothly reconcile additional recruiting because the hours of meetings can be matched with professional work so that it does not overlap. Due to the fact that at that time I was also running many projects in another company on a full-time basis, I had a lot of work, but I managed to combine it.

What was your path in the Talent Place community like? What has changed since you’ve been working here? What tasks did you do first and what do you do now?

At first, I came here as a recruiter, I got a project for a client in Krakow and there I was asked right away to get involved as a Client Success Manager. At the time, I didn’t know much about what the role entailed and what it would mean in practice for me. Then I began to understand everything better. It was about splicing processes together, as well as being a recruiter for the project. Over time, I got an offer from management to join Talent Place full-time and take care of the entire IT department. So I became an IT Business Unit Manager, and that was a big promotion for me. My new responsibilities include overall client contact, scheduling briefs, managing the recruitment team, reporting needs, working with the department Community. Wondering also what steps need to be taken to get as many IT recruiters into our community as possible and, on the other hand, how to work with recruiters so that processes go smoothly.

What does your workday look like?

It’s very dynamic, because a lot depends on what time of the month it is. I usually spend part of the day just contacting clients, i.e. I ask, for example, for updates on candidates, send recommendations, and check and verify bases. Then I devote time to sourcing, as I am constantly supporting the girls in the teams in recruiting and actively reaching out to candidates. Later, there is time for interviews and for more operational things, such as deploying recruiters to the project, working with the Community Department, and constantly updating the Delivery Department’s activities. Plus, of course, during the day we have team meetings with clients or recruiters. I set my work start and end depending on what there is to do.

What does working at Talent Place give you? What kinds of things do you particularly appreciate?

Certainly, the fact that I was given the opportunity to grow, because it is important, however, to go higher all the time, at least for me. Becoming a Senior Recruitment Specialist for the rest of my life wasn’t attractive in my opinion, and in the companies where I worked before, these development opportunities weren’t there too much. That’s why I’m glad that Talent Place trusted me and gave me a chance to perform in the role of BUM.

What value do you see in a community like Talent Place?

Here, first of all, what is different from working in corporation is the relaxed style of communication. And the fact that when there is work to be done we just focus on what is most important and work together for success. It’s not like some individuals are cutting themselves off, saying “this is your part, I won’t help you,” we just work together, there is a team approach. And as I mentioned, communication – that when it’s funny, it’s funny, we have meme channels, we share photos. In addition, despite the fact that we work 100% remotely, relationships are maintained, you can see that there is a team spirit.

To whom would you recommend working at Talent Place?

Young recruiters especially, because I didn’t mention it before either, but we train beginners in recruitment. From sourcer to recruiter, there are opportunities for growth here. Also, I would recommend working at Talent Place to young moms who are on maternity leave and can afford to put in a few hours during the day to work extra to earn extra money. IT recruiters, because projects in this industry are plentiful here, and at the same time it can be combined with a full-time job. If you have those 2-3 hours off during the day, extra, or weekends, it’s a great thing. And working with Talent Place is a very cool option for people who prefer to work flexibly and not necessarily on a full-time basis, although such opportunities are also available here.

Piotr Pawłowski

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