Reed (company)

REED is an employment agency based in the United Kingdom. [2] The company was founded in 1960 by Sir Alec Reed CBE, and is currently chaired by his son, James Reed . REED also offers training and HR consultancy services. The company’s website,, was established in 1995 and double as a employment website . In 2014 Alexa ranked as the no.1 UK employment agency website.

REED Group companies

REED Group claims 2900 employees across 460 business units and 130 locations worldwide, in 20 recruitment specialisms. The majority of its operations are in the UK, but also in the Middle East, Asia and continental Europe. [3] [4] [5]

The company has four main divisions:

  • Reed Specialist Recruitment Services recruitment services for permanent, contract, temporary and outsourced jobs, as well as IT and HR consultancy. Specialists include accountancy, banking and finance, office support, education, health and care, HR, management procurement, science, technology, hospitality and leisure.
  • Reed Online Ltd is responsible for We come from Jobs Employers in the private and public Sectors, recruitment agencies and Reed’s consultants based in the UK, and the rest of the world. Established in 1995. was the UK’s first online recruitment site. Hitwise reports that it is the UK’s most-visited commercial job site. The site itself reports receiving approximately 4 million job applications per month, with 14,000 registered recruiters; It also claims a database of 7 million jobseekers worldwide, gathered through online registrations and the Reed office network. The website offers jobs across various industries around the world. [6]
  • Reed Learning provides training and training services, including postgraduate study programs, business training and personal development courses. The division claims to deliver in excess of 50,000 training days a year.
  • Reed in Partnership offers programs to assist unemployed workers make the transition from welfare to work. It was launched in 1998 as part of the Blair Government’s New Deal Program. Reed In Partnership claims to have helped 140,000 people into employment. Reed in Partnership also works with Australia. The UK coalition government elected in May 2010 canceled some of Reed’s previously held contracts while awarding new ones to the firm, such as for Alec Reed’s home town of Hounslow. Reed in Partnership employed 450 staff as of 2014. It is a partner in the UK’s National Citizen Service , an open-to-16-year and 17-year-olds providing outreach activities.

Charities and social initiatives

Founder Sir Alec Reed is a philanthropist, receiving a Knighthood in 2011 for services to business and charity. The Reed Foundation, The Big Give , Ethiopiaid , and WomanKind Worldwide .

The Reed Foundation is a charitable foundation set up by Sir Alec Reed. The Foundation owns an 18% share of the Reed group of companies. Funds go towards supporting charitable projects and one-off donations. Other donations include a one million Rand grant to the Nelson Mandela Foundation to support education in South Africa , and two million pounds to the West London Academy in Ealing, later renamed the Alec Reed Academy . The Academy is for 4 – 18 year olds and has a sports and business specialism, supported by a £ 2million pledge by Alec Reed. [7]

The Big Give is a Reed Foundation initiative to introduce donors to charitable projects in their field of interest. Launched in 2007, the website holds details of over 7,500 charities. It reports raising £ 50m to date, distributed to approximately 10,000 different charities. Its Board of Philanthropists includes Sir Charles Dunstone , Sir Adrian Cadbury , Lord Bell , Jon Snow and Martha Lane Fox . The Big Give ‘s’ Christmas Challenge’.

Ethiopiaid is a charity that works in partnership with community projects in Ethiopia . Founded by Alec Reed in 1989, it aims to tackle the problems of poverty, ill health and poor education in Ethiopia, Addis Ababa . The charities work focus on poverty alleviation, healthcare and education. Launched with a £ 1m donation from Alec Reed, the charity has raised £ 28m in partner donations in 25 years.

Womankind Worldwide is an international women’s rights and development charity to help challenge women’s participation in their community. Launched in 1989 by Alec Reed and Kate Young, it provides funding and expertise to women’s rights organizations in 14 countries across Africa, Asia and Latin America. The charity claims to have reached 18 million women through 35 partner organizations. Patrons include Kate Adie OBE, Helena Kennedy QC, Lord Lester of Herne Hill QC and Professor Amartya Sen . [8]



First branch of the Reed Employment Agency, 1960

The economic development and full employment of the 1950s led to a flourishing of employment agencies in the UK, as businesses needed help to find staff. While working as an accountant at Gillette, Alec Reed noticed that he was signing off on numerous payments to employment agencies, giving him the idea to start his own.

While still employed at Gillette, Reed worked evenings and weekends in an estate agency in Hounslow. The estate agency’s premises were split into two businesses, with one side selling property and the other side selling carpets. The Gillette pension fund is a family owned and operated family owned and operated community owned and operated by Gillette. On Saturday 7 May 1960, the 26-year-old Reed opened the first branch of Reed Employment in the estate agent’s office, opposite Hounslow bus station. Reed’s training colleagues at Gillette provided him with his first few investments. Turnover grew rapidly and the firm expanded to a second branch in Feltham. Reed later wrote in his autobiography:

“It was not until several years later that I realized that it was not my own genius that was the key to my instant success, but being near Heathrow Airport.” It was expanding fast in the 1960s and had a voracious appetite for staff Naively, I thought that was just normal, so it was quite a shock when I opened another half dozen offices and they all started to lose money.

With the newer branches struggling, Reed sought the help of an advertising agency newly founded by Maurice and Charles Saatchi ; Reed later claimed that their work had no perceptible impact on the business. Instead, Alec Reed began to publicize the company by experimenting with the reed offices. In the early 1960s, most employment agencies were located in first or second floor offices. Copying the example of rival Alfred Marks, Reed has moved into the streets, such as London’s Oxford Street, so that they could easily be seen by the public.

1971 flotation

The Brook Street Bureau and Alfred Marks. The Brook Street Bureau and Alfred Marks.

By 1969 Reed Employment had opened 75 branches. However profitable, financing the expansion of cash flow difficulties. These were compounded when the firm’s bank began to reduce its overdraft facility, which the firm had been using as working capital. Faced with a shortage of capital, Reed decided to float the business.

Reed Employment on the London Stock Exchange on January 13, 1971, a price / earnings ratio of 13.1 and a yield of 4.4%. Alec Reed is a member of the Board of Directors of Alec Reed. At their 1980s peak, the shares increased to 150 times their offer value and averaged 80 times the value for most of the 1990s. The Reed Family retained effective control of the company’s post-flotation, through the combination of Alec Reed’s shareholdings and that of his children. Alec Reed used part of his flotation windfall to found Reed Business School in 1972.

Alec Reed is a retired employee of the Reed Company, a retired employee of the Reed Company. A metaphorical unpaid greyhound on a racetrack called the stock market. ” Medicare Retail Pharmaceuticals, Pharmaceuticals, Pharmaceuticals, Pharmaceuticals, Pharmaceuticals, Pharmaceuticals, Pharmaceuticals, Pharmaceuticals, Pharmaceuticals (Medicare was founded in 1973 and sold to Dee Corporation in 1985 for £ 20million; Reed used his £ 5m windfall from the sale to start the Reed Foundation, which owns 18% of the Group’s shares).


Reed saw rapid expansion during this period, punctuated by two recessions. In 1972 turnover doubled to £ 10m, with profits just under £ 1m, helped by rising demand for temporary workers and by inflation, which boosted salaries and reed’s commission.

By 1975 profits had halved, partly due to the 1974 oil crisis. Reed and Reed Finance and Reed Computing, among others. (Reed Executive), which would not be able to carry out any other divisions. By 1979 profits had returned, with the company achieving £ 3.1m on a turnover of £ 32m. During the 1970s and 1980s, Reed donated 1% of its pretax profits to the Charities Aid Foundation.

Reed also experimented with publishing during this time. Roundabout magazine was designed to be given away to young women at Tube stations. Reed already HAD experience of magazine publishing with its in-house magazine Reed Girl , goal Roundabout Was avocation at the audience. It featured fashion, beauty and celebrity content, though its main purpose was to reed. Roundabout was launched October 1973, on the same day as three other similar magazines. Reed closed publication in January 1974.


The recession of the early 1980s prompted Reed’s first-ever loss (£ 1.64m in 1983) and the closure of agency branches, from 130 to 87. By March 1984 profitability returned, to £ 1.2m. Reed shares hit their all-time peak in early 1987, reaching £ 1.80; During this period The Reed Foundation bought back shares, with the Reed family’s holding rising to 70% of the company.

In 1986 Alec Reed was diagnosed with colon cancer and given a 40% chance of survival. Reed’s Diagnosis Chris Kelly is a graduate of the Reed Group. In 1992 Reed’s son joined as a non-executive director, becoming operations director in 1994 and chief operations officer in 1995.


In 1995 pre-tax profits reached £ 8m on a turnover of £ 150m, up 30% on 1994. Reed launched further specialist divisions in the year, including Reed Learning, Reed Graduate and Reed Managed Services. Reed Restart, a not-for-profit enterprise to provide ex-prisoners with rehabilitation and training.

James Reed became chief executive in 1997, following Chris Kelly’s resignation. The Blair Government’s Welfare-to-Work Program, christened by Labor as The New Deal. Paymaster General Geoffrey Robinson is an associate of Alec Reed. Reed refused at first, changing his mind only when learning that rival agency Manpower was interested. Reed forgot to mention the conversation with Robinson to his James (by then Reed Group’s chief executive), leading James to assume that the call was a hoax, before Robinson later phoned to confirm the discussion. was the UK’s first online recruitment site. The launch of the website offers a job listing. A second iteration, launched in 1997, featured job vacancies typed in by Reed’s office receptionist in between her other duties. Significantly, the first person to get a job through lived 60 miles away from the hiring company. As Alec Reed later wrote: “That would not have happened to the local branch, so it opened my eyes to the internet’s potential.” Reed extended its investment but, with online recruitment still in its infancy, few companies sought to offer their vacancies through the internet. In response, employee Paul Rapacioli Reed customers and Reed ‘ S direct competitors – could advertise jobs free of charge, converting the site from a walled garden into an aggregator. Alec Reed later on the company’s “breakthrough” online. Calling this strategy “Freecruitment”, the new site was launched in 2000 and by the end of that year had attracted 42,000 vacancies. Rapacioli received a £ 100,000 bonus for his suggestion. In 2007 the site moved to a fee-paying model. Hitwise reports that the site has the largest share of all UK traffic recruitment sites. Rapacioli received a £ 100,000 bonus for his suggestion. In 2007 the site moved to a fee-paying model. Hitwise reports that the site has the largest share of all UK traffic recruitment sites. Rapacioli received a £ 100,000 bonus for his suggestion. In 2007 the site moved to a fee-paying model. Hitwise reports that the site has the largest share of all UK traffic recruitment sites.

Advertising and sponsorship

Short Film Competition

In September 2009, launched its annual Short Film Competition with a top prize of £ 10,000. The competition, run via YouTube , invite movie makers to submit a short film of no more than three minutes in length based on a specific theme. Partners include BAFTA , Channel Four , the British Council , Total Film and Creative England. The judging panel for the 2014 competition included Jaime Winstone , Eugene Simon , Stuart Cosgrove , Roger Chapman , Paul Weiland and Nicola Reed.

Love Mondays campaign

In January 2008, a nationwide advertising campaign was launched promoting The advertising of the firm’s current slogan of ‘Love Mondays’, with print and poster post-it note . The Love Mondays campaign is now fronted by actor and comedian Rufus Jones , Who plays James Reed as a caricature of a comic book superhero.


In 2002, shares in the Reed Health Group (2001), a 25-year-old CEO of Reed Health,

Reed Health was initially well received by investors, with the value of its shares briefly overpassing that of its parent company. Christa Echtle and Desmond Doyle were advised by James Wellesley at Wesley at Granville Baird.

In May 2002, Reed Health and the Retirement of Health Care Recipients in the United States, Had the motion been passed, Reed Health would have the power to dilute the Reed family’s shareholding to the point where the family risked losing control of the company. The proposal was voted down. The Reed family then rejected the reelection of Echtle and Doyle as directors, effectively firing them into the AGM. News of the Pair of the City by surprise. Some financial commentators, such as Patience Wheatcroft of Management Today, Reed’s board; Two non-executive directors resigned in protest.

Reed later cited the incident as shaping the Reed family’s decision to take the company private. In April 2003 the Reed Executive for 140p per share, an 18% premium on the pre-announcement closing price; In 2005 the family regained control of Reed Health after a hostile bid. Reed companies are now privately owned and family-controlled.

Founder succession

In 2000 Alec Reed stepped down from the position of chairman to become non-executive chairman, before relinquishing all executive responsibilities in 2004 and assuming the title of founder-at-large. James Reed became chairman in 2004.

See also

  • Employment website


  1. Jump up^ About REED, Retrieved 2017-07-14.
  2. Jump up^ Steve McCormack (July 6, 2006). “AZ of Employers: Reed” . Independent . 26 September 2006. Archived from the original on 2006-09-26 . Retrieved 2 March 2012 .
  3. Jump up^ “About Reed” . . Reed . Retrieved 2 March 2012 .
  4. Jump up^ Huppert, Julian. “Julian Huppert Liberal Democrat MP for Cambridge urges teenagers to sign up for National Citizen Service” . . Retrieved 12 September 2014 .
  5. Jump up^ “Promoting social action: encouraging and enabling people to play a more active part in society” . . Retrieved 12 September 2014 .
  6. Jump up^ Online Recruitment: most visited in 2009 and breaking records in 2010
  7. Jump up^ “Ofsted criticises London academy standards” . Guardian . 7 March 2006 . Retrieved 23 November 2011 .
  8. Jump up^ “International Women’s Day” . Retrieved 12 September 2014 .

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