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Claire Stradling

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Claire Stradling

Director | Interim & NFP Divisions

I head up our Interim and Contracts division, as well as the NFP team.

Our NFP team specialise in Executive, Finance, HR, Marketing and Fundraising within a wide range of NFP organisations. Our clients range from the largest registered charities in the UK, regulatory bodies, think-tanks, public sector and government bodies through to smaller charities and third sector organisations.

The interim teams cover all of our sectors in Finance, HR, Marketing, Tax and Legal, and our client base ranges from Big 4 professional services, Magic Circle legal firms, NFP, and C&I organsisations..

Born and bred, I am a proud Birmingham lass and in my spare time I am an avid Aston Villa fan and try to go to as many games as possible or watch on TV. I also enjoy rugby and tennis. I enjoy good food, wine and country walks as well as volunteering for charitable causes. I love getting away when I can and Peru, South Africa and Cambodia are next on my list!

claire's latest roles

  • Project Director - AMS Governance Spe...

    Up to £92920.00 per annum + excellent benefits

    Project Director - AMS Governance Specialist - Audit Market Supervision London and remote - (4 days a fortnight in the office) £92,920 Do you have expertise in corporate and/or audit firm governance? Do you ...

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  • Programme Finance Officer

    £38000 - £40000.00 per annum

    Programme Finance Officer London £38000-£40000 Do you have experience of grants and donor reporting such as DFID, EU or USAID? Have you worked for a NGO, international charity or have experience of grants/do...

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  • Governance Associate

    Up to £49288.00 per annum + excellent benefits

    Governance Associate Full time - London (2 days a week, Remote 3 days a week) A prestigious regulatory body are seeking a Governance Associate to join their team. This is an exciting time for the organisatio...

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  • Interim Business Analyst Process Impr...

    £55 - £500 per day

    Interim Business Analyst Process Improvement - Finance London, Birmingham or remote c £500 a day Our Client, a global facilities company are going through a Finance Improvement Programme to standardise its p...

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  • Project Manager - Taxonomies/ Digital...

    Up to £49288.00 per annum + excellent benefits

    Project Manager (Taxonomies/ Digital Reporting) Project Manager (Taxonomies/ Digital Reporting) Combination of London (2 days a week) and homeworking for rest £49,288 Supporting the organisations Project Dir...

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  • Interim Costs Analyst/Estimator

    £600 - £650 per day

    Business Analyst/Costs Engineer - Interim London/Surrey or Birmingham c£600/650 up to 12 months A global facilities management organisation is seeking an experienced costs/pricing analyst with experience of ...

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What people say about Claire

Claire at Pro Group is a star! Her professionalism and reliability is clearly without parallel . . . I found her recruitment skills to be of a high calibre, and her approach was very refreshing and personal and it made me feel confident in her ability to place me in suitable role...


Firstly thank you so much for being one of the best recruitment consultants, I have dealt with during my search, you are few and far between. Your professional approach with honest and responsive conversation, is exactly what a candidate like...


Claire recently supported me in my quest in finding a new senior HR role. Throughout the experience she was proactive, listened to feedback and worked positively with both her client and myself to discuss, if a role was truly right for me as a person...


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Companies Claire has worked with

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Parkinson's UK is a charity who empower and support thousands of people living with the condition, inspire health and social care professionals to help drive better care and steer ground-breaking research to improve treatments and to find a cure.

In October 2018 likeminded housing associations Metropolitan and Thames Valley Housing formally completed a partnership to form Metropolitan Thames Valley. Metropolitan Thames Valley provides housing at different levels of affordability for people living in London, the South East, East Midlands and East of England.

The Financial Reporting Council is an independent regulator in the UK and Ireland, responsible for regulating auditors, accountants and actuaries, and setting the UK's Corporate Governance and Stewardship Codes.

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claire's articles

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Introducing: Laura Richards, Senior Consultant, Pro-Payroll

Posted by Claire Stradling

I am delighted to welcome Laura Richards to our growing Pro-Payroll team and she will be joining Neil Wild and Ray Moore to further strengthen our Payroll recruitment services. Laura has over years of experience within the payroll market. We see this as a niche and exciting area for us that sits comfortably between our existing HR and Finance brands and will add further value to our extensive client portfolio. Laura will specialise in recruiting Payroll professionals such as:  Head of Payroll Payroll Manager Payroll Supervisor Payroll Consultant Payroll Analyst Payroll Officer Payroll Administrators Implementation Consultant Payroll Executives The market is strong currently and we are investing heavily into new service offerings for our clients and candidates this year including payroll and interim recruitment support. Don't just take my word for it, here's what others have to say about Laura's recruitment services. Please do get in touch with her to discuss your payroll recruitment needs at laura.richards@pro-recruitment.co.uk or call her on 07943 573 987 If you are an experienced recruiter interesting in discussing our growth plans this year, it would be great to chat. Contact me on 020 7269 6351 or email claire.stradling@pro-recruitment.co.uk

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Introducing: Charlotte Dunkerton - Pro-HR

Posted by Claire Stradling

I am absolutely delighted to welcome Charlotte Dunkerton to our Not-For-Profit recruitment team.  She will be managing our HR permanent division into the NFP, charity and third sector space. Charlotte has a wealth of recruitment experience including HR and charity sector experience and will bring lots of expertise to our current client and candidate base as well as her own network built over many years 2021 has been a great year so far. As we ease back into normality from the recent pandemic, demand is very high for experienced HR professionals. If you are looking for an HR role or need to add talent to your team, do reach out to Charlotte. Charlotte specialises in placing HR professionals into permanent roles in the Not-for-Profit sector. This includes:  HR Directors OD HR Consultants Change and transformation  L&D Head of HR HR Managers HR Officers and Advisers Charlotte is a fantastic addition to our team, and already a well-valued member of the Pro-Group team. I am delighted that our Charities and NFP division continues to offer our clients and candidates HR recruitment services. Please do not hesitate to contact Charlotte on +44(0)20 7269 63542 or email charlotte.dunkerton@pro-recruitment.co.uk to discuss our latest opportunities and recruitment needs. Finally, due to the demand, we are still adding to our team and are interested in speaking to any experienced recruiters with either interim HR or finance experience, please do give me a call if you are looking for your next step in your recruitment career.

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Introducing Neil Wild & Ray Moore - Payroll Recruitment Specialists

Posted by Claire Stradling

I am absolutely delighted to welcome Neil Wild and Ray Moore to the Pro-Family, specialising in Payroll recruitment. Ray and Neil have joined us with many years of experience within the payroll market. We see this as a niche and exciting area for us that sits comfortably between our existing HR and Finance brands, and will add further value to our extensive client portfolio. They will both specialise in recruiting:  Head of Payroll Payroll Manager Payroll Supervisor Payroll Consultant Payroll Analyst Payroll Officer Payroll Administrators Implementation Consultant Payroll Executives With a very strong network of both clients and candidates, this new area will also add Ray and Neil’s expertise to our existing clients. The market is strong currently and we are investing heavily into new service offerings for our clients and candidates this year including payroll and interim recruitment support. It's clear to see Ray and Neil's passion and enthusiasm for the market is infectious and they are already contributing to the team and business.  Here's what others have to say about Neil & Ray  Please do get in touch with Ray or Neil to discuss your Payroll recruitment needs. If you are an experienced recruiter interesting in discussing our growth plans this year, it would be great to chat. Contact me on 020 7269 6351 or email claire.stradling@pro-recruitment.co.uk

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Should Covid Vaccinations be Mandatory Before Returning to the Office?

Posted by Claire Stradling

At the time of writing, over 24m of the UK population have already received their first COVID vaccination and Boris has pledged to all adults in the UK being offered their first dose of a coronavirus vaccine by the end of July. As a result, there is already a debate happening about whether employers can, or should, insist on employees being vaccinated. One of the knottiest questions is whether inoculations should be mandatory for staff before returning to work. Understandably, employers will see the vaccine as a means of protecting the health and safety of staff as it could help make the workplace more secure and give employees (and customers/clients) greater confidence about returning to work.  Not knowing which way the wider UK workforce would sway on the knotty question, I ran a poll to my Linkedin Network which closed at the start of March, and here is what I found. Things remain very undecided. Requiring an entire workforce to be vaccinated will be difficult to achieve from both a legal and employee relations perspective. The government is not currently introducing legislation to make the vaccination compulsory and therefore it will be for individuals to decide whether to or not to be vaccinated. The NHS is issuing ‘vaccine cards’ recording which vaccination an individual has received and reminding those receiving the vaccine to present for their second dose and medical records will, of course, record if someone has received the vaccine. However, whether the government will choose to issue vaccine passports or certificates is a difficult issue as it presents a number of novel, ethical issues.  Ongoing consultation with employees will be key to implementing any policies on Covid vaccination, and indeed on Coronavirus-related employment matters more generally. Here are a few things to bear in mind as part of this: Have an Open Approach  to Flexible Working Requests In the past, many employers were resistant to introducing flexible working for fear that it would lead to reduced productivity. With the pandemic, many employers will hopefully now have more trust in their employees and see that working from home or working flexible hours is the ‘new way of working’ and a very feasible option. It’s very likely that employers will receive a high number of flexible working requests when things return to “normal” so it would be sensible to consider how they might deal with these. Bear in mind that, given many employees have worked from home for the best part of a year, employers probably won’t be able to rely on blanket arguments that “home working doesn’t work” to turn down a request. At Pro, we’ve seen productivity increase, relationships are work are now even tighter as we continue to speak with our colleagues daily on Microsoft Teams. Counter any Misinformation Many employees may be sceptical of the vaccine, we live in an age where social media can cause misinformed judgements, so it’s important to make sure you, as an employer, are kept up-to-date with the correct information provided by the NHS and advise that your teams refer back to local GP who would be much better placed at providing information which may be sensitive to discuss in the workplace. Future Business Planning Consulting with your teams and colleagues should always be seen as a valuable opportunity. A discussion about appetite or concerns for the vaccine is naturally linked to questions about returning to normality and future work patterns. What do employees like about “the new normal” that they want to keep? Consider whether you want to return to the workplace as before, or whether this is a time to reimagine office life and adjust working practices and use of space as a result?  At Pro, we continue to build our future based on the opinions of our teams, using surveys and providing open forums for your teams to share opinions will build trust and develop a future of happy, retained, and ambitious employees who want to succeed with the growth of your business. So to conclude, employees and employers are very split in and amongst the debate of “Should COVID vaccines be mandatory before returning to the office? “ but it is certainly sensible to start thinking about what approach you might take, remembering that continued consultation with your teams will be key. If you would like more advice about returning to the office or the new working landscape, please do get in touch. I'd love to hear your thoughts, you can contact me on 020 7269 6351 or claire.stradling@pro-recruitment.co.uk

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Introducing: Petra Brown - Pro-Group Finance Interim & Contracts Specialist

Posted by Claire Stradling

I am absolutely delighted to welcome Petra Brown to Pro-Group as Managing Consultant – Interim Finance. With many years of recruitment experience, Petra joins us to bolster our finance interim and temporary recruitment offering. Interim and Contracts are areas we are investing heavily in this year, although the market it strong, it is also demanding a more flexible and agile workforce. As such we want to react to this demand and provide our clients and candidates with a dedicated interim division. People of Petra's calibre do not become available very often. She can offer recruitment expertise with a very strong network of clients and candidates to support her services, as well as adding extra value and expertise to our existing client base. We have a fantastic and loyal client base ranging from the large charities and NFP organisations, professional services and practice, commerce and industry and legal entities and we want to proactively extend our service offers to interim and contract within these sectors. A few days into her Pro-Group career her energy and passion for the finance interim recruitment market is infectious! Welcome to the team Petra - Find out more about Petra here.

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The Rise of Interim and Consultancy Recruitment

Posted by Claire Stradling

According to ONS, there are currently over 1.4million temporary, interim or contract workers in the UK. Firms are now looking to hire temporary, interim and consultancy workers as business activity recovers.  Growth in Demand Short term demand for staff to complete operational tasks has been high and we’ve found organisations are more likely to hire interim and consultancy workers than permanent staff over the next six months as the demand for agency workers over the next year is likely to remain high. According to the Recruitment and Employment Confederation’s latest Jobs Outlook report, Temporary staff are becoming increasingly important to businesses as they try to recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. In times of uncertainty, interim and consultancy work can be a real asset to both employers and workers – it allows firms to create jobs when the future outlook is unclear, and gives people a chance to get back into work, earn money quickly, and progress into a permanent position. REC research shows that interim and consultancy work is not only important for employers, but for workers as well. Two in five (39%) people in Britain have done temporary, contract or freelance work during their lives, and the majority do this by choice. One in three (36%) chose to do this to find work quickly, while three in ten (28%) used temporary work to earn money quickly. Many also use temporary work as a stepping stone and progress into permanent positions – two in three (68%) of those who have done interim and consultancy work in the past are now in a permanent role. An equally important incentive driving the number of interim and consultancy workers is the opportunity for organisations to ‘try before they buy’. In other words, rather than spending weeks or even months on the hiring process to later discover that the employee is not the right fit for the company, UK firms are hiring temp workers to evaluate the workers’ performance, attitude to work and their overall suitability for the role in question, without the financial burden of a permanent job offer. This proves equally beneficial for temp workers who can assess the company and job role before they decide whether the job is right for them. Join Us Here at Pro-Group, we have a strong Interim and Contract offering, and looking to build and develop our offering. We have long-standing relationships with companies across our key sectors - Tax, Finance, HR and Marketing, Communications and Fundraising - and the interim and consultancy market is stronger than ever.  You will be joining a passionate and diverse team who work closely together to ensure they can deliver results and act as an extension to the client’s own recruitment processes.   Our story is simple, “We want to establish a company that truly valued, respected and looked after its employees. After all, not only are we in a ‘people’ industry, but we strongly believe that happy employees make for a successful company. Our staff are our number one asset!” - Pat Keogh, Chairman at Pro-Group.   Autonomous recruiting brings big rewards If you’re looking to take control of your own work, or if you are an experienced recruiter looking to start in a new sector then we can offer you the opportunity to really put your own stamp on the role and business as a whole. We do not demand pointless and unachievable KPIs but work with you as an individual to set personalised objectives and the ability to manage your workload and desk in a way that works for you.  We offer a market leading commissionsion structure, it’s rewarded to you quarterly, offering you the opportunity to earn up to 40% of your billings with plenty of fantastic benefits to suit, including mortgage savings schemes, private medical insurance as well as training and a market-leading technology suite to help you achieve.  As an SME, the management structure is flat which is very different to what I am used to having worked for larger organisations, but I see this as a massive benefit. Your voice is heard, listened to and the owners sit on the floor with you. I have also seen massive and progressive changes in Pro-Group in my few years with the company. If I need a new job-board - no problem as long as I can show a business case for it. Want to set up a new division? Again no problem, just present a business case and you will be backed. No red tape or layers of management to convince. If you have a vision and plan, it will be backed. How we’re adapting to the Pandemic Due to Covid19, every employee at Pro-Group is working 100% remotely, and we have ensured that they have the equipment and IT infrastructure and systems to be able to do this.   We are adapting quickly and in response to Government Guidelines and our main priority is to keep all of our employees safe and well. At the moment we are not sure when (or even if) there will be a full return to the office and are regularly reviewing the guidelines, taking feedback from our employees and have fully embraced a true flexible working approach.  We are able to interview virtually and for new joiners to Pro-Group, we have implemented a remote onboarding process to ensure a smooth transition to join the Pro-Family. If you are interested and would like to find out more about joining Pro-Group, please do get in touch. Let’s have an informal discrete discussion, you can contact me on 020 7269 6351 or claire.stradling@pro-recruitment.co.uk

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Calls for a Job Retention Scheme in the Charity and Not-for-Profit sector

Posted by Claire Stradling

30 charity leaders have written to the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, requesting the need for  a job-retention scheme for the Charity & Not-for-Profit Sector. Civil society leaders call for the Chancellor to reassess decisions to ensure communities are supported, and fund  as the best way to recover from the pandemic. The letter highlighted that the sector faces a “critical dilemma” and calls for a tailored job retention programme.  The coalition is led by the Charity Finance Group and backed by over thirty other UK organisations, including the Chartered Institute of Fundraising, Association of Charitable Foundations, Acevo (the charity leaders’ body) and the Small Charities Coalition. They represent thousands of charities and social enterprises nationally across the UK.  The request for a time-limited scheme that enables organisations in the sector to furlough staff and allow them to volunteer their time and skills back to their not-for-profit, public benefit employer has been raised by the group for the Chancellor’s consideration. The letter highlights that the sector faces a “critical dilemma” and calls for a tailored job retention programme.  “The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme was an exceptionally generous scheme which was welcomed by the sector and which charities and social enterprises have availed themselves of during its first phase,” the letter states. “However, as a scheme designed predominantly with private enterprise in mind, it had the perverse effect of incentivising mothballing of provision and not mobilisation. It finishes with, “It is counterproductive to be paying for a charity or social enterprise employee to stop working when our citizens so desperately need helplines, advice, support and guidance; whether on mental health, unemployment, homelessness or loneliness and isolation.”  From my perspective as a recruiter in the NFP and charities space, a delayed response for the need of support in the third sector space can be detrimental to charities delivering their services in these unprecedented times. It certainly is a ‘social dilemma’: Access the government’s job retention scheme to save on salary costs, and thereby closing or reducing vital services, or risk financial collapse.  The sector is so well served by those giving their time and skills on a voluntary basis, and yet employees who often work in the sector because of the cause and wanting to make a difference are unable to do so if they want too. Whilst this rule was undoubtedly made to stop rogue employers abusing the scheme and employee’s rights; should the charity sector be different?  I am interested in hearing your thoughts? Some have had the added cost of seeking short term, and part time interim flexible workers to help and we have certainly seen an increase in demand for part time and shorter term flexible interim workers. Please reach out on 020 7269 6351 or email me claire.stradling@pro-recruitment.co.uk

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My New Routine - Working From Home

Posted by Claire Stradling

COVID-19 has temporarily changed our working lives and routines. Most of us left the office a little less than two weeks ago and moved our workplace to our own homes ready to start at 8am the next morning. And with very little disruption thanks to the digital world we live in now. And in less than two weeks we have all had to learn a whole new vocabulary and world with terms such as “self isolation”, “social distancing“ and “the curve”.  As well as having to change our normal days beyond recognition, both in and out of work mode. Life is clearly very very different right now to how it has ever been before. I used to work from home a couple of times a month and found it great to be able to get my head down, inspect my division, and think about our strategy without interruptions. However, some people love working from home. I am not one of those people... Recruitment is a social job. We meet a wide range of clients and candidates and try and match them together. It’s also a tough job at times. When you need the support of those around you to get you the tough times... I love the buzz of the office and the energy of those around me. And I miss it, a lot. Here is how I'm changing my working routine to adjust to working from home: 1. I keep the tv/radio on quietly in the background. Not loud enough to distract me, but loud enough not to be lost in silence when I am not talking on the phone or interviewing online. It’s clearly not the same as working with over 50 friends and colleagues but it does help me. 2. To keep our strong team spirit, I build in regular phone and video calls with my colleagues throughout the day. Just to share news and check in with how we are all feeling. We also do this to try to have some fun, recreate the buzz of the office, and encourage normal social interactions. I have a virtual lunch with my teams at least a few times a week, and last week I joined a clients virtual pub quiz (sorry my general knowledge was so bad...). On a Friday, we have a team collective "cheers", where we all get a glass of wine or beer from the fridge at the same time, accompanied by a weekly update from our MD. It’s a reminder that we are still a team - both the charities division I head up and the wider team at Pro.  3. I try and dress for the office. Whatever your normal dress code for the office, try to recreate at home. We have regular meetings online via Skype, Zoom, Microsoft Teams and MSmeet with external clients and suppliers. And we still have an image to portray. Also, just by putting on my work clothes, it’s a clear sign to me and those around me that I am at work. It just changes my mindset to a work one and helps my productivity throughout the working day. 4. Have tea/coffee breaks, go out for your exercise once a day, and take regular breaks from your laptop throughout the day. It sounds obvious, but taking lunch away from my workstation really helps me, as well as having set clear times when I work, and when it’s "my" time. I focus on the day-to-day only. None of us can be sure about what other changes will be happening in a weeks time, a months time, or 6 months time. So, I try and focus on what I can control right now by setting myself daily targets, rather than worrying about what is going to happen next week or next month. 5. My only C-19 news is Boris's evening updates! It’s a routine and whilst I want to know what the latest news is, I don’t want to be consumed by it throughout the day.  So Boris is my daily update on COVID-19, and I try not to read or listen to anything else about it during the day or evening. Life is so different and scary at the moment, so I try and keep myself up to date with what I need to know without it consuming my whole day and life. Who knows how long this is going to go on for? When the peak will be reached? And if the world of work will ever go back to how it was before this? But most of us will still have our health. And most of us will have adapted very quickly and in our own unique ways, just showing how resilient and strong we all really are. When we come through this, life will be very different for a long time in many ways. I still feel a little shell shocked, I must admit. But, we have seen both the worst and best of human behaviour in the last few weeks - mostly the best. And that also keeps me going. Stay safe all. For help with your recruiting needs or more advice on working from home, please contact Claire Stradling on 020 7269 6351 or claire.stradling@pro-recruitment.co.uk.

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