Meet Matt Baird of District4.

I have specialised in social housing recruitment for nearly nine years, I’ve worked predominantly in the Midlands, but more recently as far north as Merseyside, across to Durham and right down to Kent in the southwest. I have a passion for the social housing sector. I’ve been to the CIH conferences, I’ve worked with the CIH in the past and have built some amazing networks. It’s a sector that’s all about its social value and social purpose as much as it is about its commercial endeavors. I live in South Birmingham but I miss the coast as I’m from Plymouth. I am very excited to be part of the District4 community!

I recruit for everything in the Social Housing sector from Frontline Customer Service and Call Centre People, to Housing Assistants, Support Workers right up to Directors and Heads of Service. I have recruited for Housing Officers, Managers, Team Leaders, Specialists in Support and Development, RTPI Planners, Development Managers, Land Managers, Planning Managers. I most recently recruited for a Head of Housing and a Domestic Violence Team Leader. If the role falls within the social housing sector then my network has been spread out far enough that I can support and help most roles in the Social Housing Sector.

District4 has given me the opportunity to be very flexible with the way I wish to work. Not just in terms of location but also in terms of the way I work with my clients. Housing is sometimes referred to as an incestuous network. Everyone knows everyone! Everybody has about two degrees of separation from everybody else. The way I’ve worked is all about getting to know people and really understanding what’s been going on across the sector. For example, I’ve worked with businesses this year that have looked at how we can overcome issues such as domestic violence and safeguarding.

So District4 has given me the flexibility to work in my own way and build relationships with clients in the way that I believe they should be built. But also the great thing about District4 is the community feel. The other members of the group specialise in their own areas but are willing to share ideas. There’s no holding on to clients or holding on to knowledge. This is amazing for both the candidates and clients that we work with, as for the first time in my experience, there is a network of expert recruiters whose priority is serving their clients rather than building a business for recruitment owners. And this community is growing quickly with plans to continue to grow even further.

For me now, it’s about making the most of the opportunity to show people what I can do when it’s me doing things the way that I believe they should be done. I’m not here to irritate people as a recruiter. I’m not here to hammer the phone or to get under the skin of my clients. What I’m here to do is build relationships. And it’s something I’ve thoroughly enjoyed doing.

In the past, I have been able to give back to the community by running roundtables and networking events. I don’t always get anything back from those. But I put people in touch with other people who can help each other out. I’m someone who has always been honest and focused on doing things the right way.

I am here to support businesses and to open up a network they maybe can’t reach themselves. The one thing I will make sure I do is listen, really understand what their business is about and promote them and support them in the best way that I can.