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The Recruitment & Employment Confederation – Q&A with Gill Stewart

Capability Jane and The Recruitment and Employment Confederation

Last week I talked to Gill Stewart our Managing Director to find out more about the UK’s professional body for the Recruitment Industry, The Recruitment and Employment Confederationwhich is also known as REC. Here is our Q&A about the REC and what it means to us at Capability Jane.  

What is the REC? 

The REC is the professional body for the UK recruitment industry. It has a code of professional practice and champions high standards, quality and ethical compliance. Corporate members of the REC are Recruitment Consultancies, Agencies and Companies.  

What is the IRP? 

Within REC is the Institute of Recruitment Professionals (IRP).  This represents the individuals working within the industry. You can be an individual member of the IRP, but as a company you are a corporate member of the REC. Capability Jane is a corporate member of the REC and I am an individual member of the IRP.  

Why does Capability Jane belong to the REC? 

We want to provide an excellent service to our clients and candidates and being part of REC helps us to do this.  It ensures we are fully compliant with the code of ethics and that we can keep up with developments in the industry as well as access the best research and training available. 

How does belonging to the REC benefit our clients & candidates? 

Both Candidates and Clients can rest assured that Capability Jane adheres to the REC code of professional practice and to the 10 principals laid down by the REC.  

What are the 10 principals? 

  • Respect for laws 
  • Respect for honesty & transparency 
  • Respect for work relationships 
  • Respect for diversity 
  • Respect for safety 
  • Respect for professional knowledge 
  • Respect for certainty of engagement 
  • Respect for prompt & accurate payment 
  • Respect for ethical international recruitment 
  • Respect for confidentiality and privacy 

Does Capability Jane have to pass a test to be a member of the REC? 

Yes. Every 2 years Capability Jane have to take a compliance test. In  the last test we scored 100% which we were extremely proud of. 

What are the benefits of the REC? 

The REC gives Capability Jane access to many services, for example, legal resources whereby we get access to lawyers who specialise in recruitment and contract law. It also provides guidance templates on essential documentation such as terms of business and contracts. We use these to ensure that all Capability Jane’s documents are legal and compliant.  Training is also a great benefit from the REC they provide courses, toolkits and webinars for both companies and individuals.  

How did the REC help with GDPR? 

It was an incredible resource.  The REC legal team took the GDPR legislation and translated it into practical terms that could be delivered into our business.  They also provided training and toolkits specifically on GDPR. 

 Does the REC deal with complaints? 

Yes, the Professional Standards Committee – the PSC – is a complaints committee within the REC.  Anyone, client or candidates, can make a complaint to them about a member company and will investigate.  They will only deal with a complaint about a member company which means clients and candidates have the assurance that there is an independent body that they can escalate their complaint to. 

What is an example of ethical conduct? 

Ethical conduct is about honesty, fairness, respect for laws and people. Not just the letter of law but the spirit of law.   An example of this is that all roles advertised have to be a real job that you are actively recruiting for. You cannot advertise a job which is not live or expired.  Another example is always gaining agreement from a candidate before submitting their CV.  Capability Jane will always discuss the roles with every candidate and gain agreement before putting their CV forward and are transparent on the profile of the role and salary. 

Can you explain the respect for diversity principal? 

It is about treating everyone without prejudice or discrimination.  We will not accept any instruction which is discriminatory e.g. if client asked for candidates aged under 40 and female, we would not recruit on this basis, we will recruit the best person for the role irrespective of sex and age. 

Diversity is extremely important at Capability Jane.  We are totally inclusive company, we are not about women only or parents only, we believe flexible working is for everyone and aim to make it accessible to all through our recruitment service and marketing. 

Additionally the REC have Diversity pledge which Capability Jane is signed up to. 


Thank you Gill for your time today. It is great to hear that Capability Jane is such active member of the REC and the stamp of approval that being a member provides us as a company.  I think it’s important that our clients and candidates know that Capability Jane adheres to  the REC code of good recruitment practice and is totally compliant with the REC standards. 

Gill Stewart is Managing Director of Capability Jane.  She is also Chair of the REC Examination & Qualifications committees, Chief Examiner and Subject Matter Author.