We’re ‘Best Newcomer’; 2to3days win at 2022 NORA recruitment awards

Juliet and Wave Nora Award night 2022
November 30, 2022

When the going gets tough, the tough start winning

2to3days has been voted the best newcomer jobs board at the National Online Recruitment Awards 2022 (NORA's). As the founder of the business, I was over the moon to have won this industry award, sponsored by Wave.  It has taken 7 years of hard graft to get here,  so being recognised as a serious contender in this highly competitive space is an honour.

With no prior experience in recruitment, technology or digital marketing and without a little black book, building 2to3days has been a personal challenge. But by being tethered to the unwavering belief that the current recruitment industry obstructs too many women from finding professional positions that they can integrate into their lives - leaving them stuck in jobs that  don’t work for their family lives, affecting their mental wellbeing,  or worse, forcing them to leave the workforce altogether, I was determined to do something about it. 

The 5 biggest challenges to overcome as a woman building a business from scratch 

  1. Naivety. I didn’t, being totally honest, have the first idea of how to build a business. This meant I have hit many a dead-end, spent money on the wrong things and hired the wrong people. I now understand why 9 out of 10 startups fail. Do your homework before you start investing your time and cash.
     
  2. Being a female entrepreneur is not easy, The odds are stacked against women in every direction, which makes it a lonelier and harder journey to endure. Building a business when you are a full-on and present mother, is even harder. Why? Simply because you have a fraction of the time that people without children have to dedicate to it, yet progress is benchmarked by those who don’t! Ensure you have your support systems in place for those moments everything needs your attention at once!
     
  3. The covid pandemic nearly annihilated 2to3days. Women were homeschooling their children and companies knew it,  so no one at all was hiring women to work flexibly! Revenue fell off a cliff and we burned through our cash reserves. The lesson here is to hunker down when times are tough. Reduce your outgoings as much as you possibly can and wait for the storm to pass. If you're onto something, the green shoots will show themselves.
     
  4. Progress is hard to make when your tech lets you down. We were badly hindered by two previous inadequate websites.  The first one was built out of 100% inexperience and fuelled by excitement to get going! So, we jumped into the life raft of a licensed job board which was rudimentary in its functionality, frustrating with its tech support and expensive. Third time lucky, we went out on a limb and built our own site, embedding flexible working and the needs of women at work in its DNA. Do your research. Speak to other similar businesses and glean all you can from those with the experience and expertise. It could save you making an expensive mistake.
     
  5. When all the odds were stacked against the business, the ‘why’ behind 2to3days drove me on. I believe it’s needed. I believe it’s wanted and I believe we’re on to something big. This is ‘why’ winning best newcomer at the NORAs 2022 means so much to me. If you believe in what you're doing, it will see you through the darkest of days. Eventually, you will reap the rewards for your resilience and tenacity.

I don't regret the pain of the last 7 years (there have been a lot of incredible achievements). I have learnt so much. Our purpose always has been and always will be, to help advance women’s equality in the workplace through the power of flexible working. We do this by connecting companies directly to our growing community of experienced female talent and we aim to keep the women in our community engaged through supportive content that helps them progress their careers. Thank you to our supporters for your encouragement, wisdom and recognition.

Flexible working is here to stay. What's good for women is good for business

In hindsight, the global pandemic has done more than any piece of legislation could do to transform the working landscape for everyone. Flexible working is now an indelible part of our working culture and companies are increasingly waking up to the unequivocal fact that not attracting, retaining and promoting women in their organisation, will hurt their bottom line and blunt their competitive edge. However, progress remains slow and you only need to read McKinsey's recent Women in the Workplace 2022 report that documents the reasons why; or the frustrations aired in The Pipeline’s Women Count 2022, to see that we are a long way from reaching equity in the workplace.  I, however, remain positive. It’s a journey, much like my own. Companies are starting to address the lack of women in their organisations and the importance of diverse, inclusive cultures. It will take time but it will be so worth the focus as ultimately, what’s good for women at work is also good for men and that’s overall good for business.

To find out how we can help your company find and hire experienced female talent, contact me here. If you're a woman looking for flexible working opportunities, we welcome you to sign up here and join our community of amazing professional women who want to work flexibly.

Juliet Turnbull is the founder and CEO of 2to3days, the online marketplace dedicated to professional women who want to work flexibly and companies who want to find and hire diverse talent.

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