30 Oct Meet the Team – Kirsten Cluer
This week, Kirsten gives us an insight into her day-to-day role at Cluer HR.
What is your full name and title at Cluer HR? Kirsten Cluer, Owner and Director of Cluer HR.
How long have you been at Cluer HR? I set up the business in November 2011 – one year after returning to my HR job at Worcestershire County Council, following a year of maternity leave. I went back to work in January 2011 knowing that there was more to life, but at the time, not being sure what it was! By the November I had set up Cluer HR and by February 2012 I was trading.
It took me a year to build up enough clients to be able to leave my job, so during that time I was juggling my new business, a part-time HR role (and a baby!) – a challenge, but I got there as I was able to leave the council and devote all my ‘work time’ to the business in January 2013.
(Short answer: 7 years this November!)
What is a day in the life of your job role like? Busy, busy, busy! Owning and managing any business is hard, and HR is no different. Things can crop up all the time that need prioritising. It’s all about managing expectations and ensuring the best outcome is always reached. Although things can get pretty hectic in the office, our office dogs Rosie and more recently Dottie are always on hand to help us through the day!
What is the most exciting aspect of your job? Meeting new people from all different industries and backgrounds is always exciting. Every client is different to a certain extent, although in some situations they may need similar help from us. This is exciting as it’s down to us to ensure they reach the best solution specific to them.
What did you do before joining Cluer HR? I did a degree in HR Management at the University of Gloucestershire and worked part-time for the first year as an estate agent to help pay the bills! In the second year I got a temping job at Cheltenham Borough Council, which just so happened to be in their HR department – a happy coincidence that I didn’t actually know until I turned up for my first day!
I ended up staying there for a year before getting a promotion to Tewkesbury Borough Council, where I stayed for a further two years until I got another promotion to Worcestershire County Council. I stayed there until I set up Cluer HR.
So, prior to setting up Cluer HR, my HR jobs were all in the public sector. Although there isn’t much kudos to working for the council, I have to say that the grounding it gave me was invaluable. I now love taking that ‘text book’ way of doing things and turning it into something that is realistic and commercially viable, all the while keeping our clients out of trouble!
Is there anything exciting you’re working on at the moment? We have new HR cases coming in every day – some are mundane, and others not! We hear it all in our field of work and I think I’ve probably become more difficult to shock as a result of working in HR!
And finally, what do you enjoy doing outside of work? I like to spend time with my little girl and love being out in the countryside with my dogs – if there is a country pub on route all the better! I practice pilates regularly and I love to sail when the weather is fine, preferably somewhere hot – I am definitely a ‘fair weather sailor’!