5 reviews
16:04 13 Mar 23
Highly recommended! Josh and Sarah have been fantastic at Astute. They've found and placed me in 2 jobs now between them, both really responsive and excellent at keeping you up to speed with things. Very knowledgable about the roles and happy to talk to companies with any queries you have.
C R.C R.
10:45 27 Jan 23
Great agency one of the best ones I've worked with! Liz has been a great help and support in helping me towards a new direction in my career life. She is very attentive and keeps me in the loop at all times! She makes the extra effort to work with my preferred requirements for work and even if it isn't completely attainable she meets me in the middle and does as much as she can to help! Also Liz is very funny might I add 😂 and I'm happy that I can now put a face to the name after all these years! Thank you again Liz for all your help and support! 😊
10:32 20 Dec 22
Josh and the Astute team was very swift to help me to find roles that matched my profile. They are really reliable and will help through every step of the recruitment process going out of their way to assist and follow up when needed. Could not find a better recruitment agency!
Helen PinegarHelen Pinegar
16:19 18 Dec 22
Fantastic recruitment agency.. Josh was extremely enthusiastic, encouraging and clearly knowledgeable about what was needed from both the employee and the employers point of view. Extremely supportive especially in regards to interview preparation and endeavoured to procure feedback promptly. Wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Astute in the future to both candidates and recruiting businesses particularly for the right fit for the role!!!
Lisa LeighLisa Leigh
11:56 30 Nov 22
I have worked as a candidate for Astute and they have been excellent. Super friendly service and professional agents keen to fit the right person to the right job. It has been a pleasure dealing with them and I would happily work for them again in the future. Highly recommend this agency.
Contact us
Suite 1, Ground Floor West,Cardinal Square,10 Nottingham Road,Derby. DE1 3QT
Stanford House,19 Castle Gate, Nottingham, NG1 7AQ


The team here at Astute Recruitment are keeping their fingers crossed for Sarah and Mary attending as finalists of Forward Ladies National Women In Business Awards (WIBA). These awards are dedicated to recognising the achievements of leading women in business in the Midlands Region.

As one of the UK’s largest gatherings of businesswomen and leaders, this event is one of four regional heats from which the winners will be entered into the Forward Ladies Women in Business UK Final in Leeds on Thursday, 1st December 2016. The event itself is a celebratory lunch with business speakers of the highest calibre held in Birmingham City Centre at The Hyatt Regency Hotel.

We are keeping our fingers crossed for ourselves but also wish the very best of luck to all the deserved finalists in their categories!


I was asked to put together some words for Recruitment International and TheBusinessDesk.com a few months back. While adding some new content to my company website I chanced upon this article again. This advice is for anyone considering starting up his or her own business and is an important reminder for anyone currently running an SME.

Be positive and honest
If you have a great business idea, pursue it! You never know where it can take you. Remember to be a doer not a watcher. When we were made redundant in 2009 I was devastated for a couple of days before asking myself: “What am I going to do now?” I knew I was skilled in my sector and I knew I had a great reputation. It seemed clear to me that I should set up on my own and so I approached my now business partner who I trusted and had worked with for several years.

Surround yourself with talented people and keep hold of them
Staff recruitment, retention, training and motivation are all absolutely key to any successful business. Any organisation is only as strong as the staff it employs. Everyone in a business is important and needs to feel fully engaged, on board and valued by their firm. Remember that you need to have some fun too and always reward success. On this topic, we will be hosting a business breakfast event on Emotional Intelligence For Business Success on 13 October. This will cover key reasons why the emotional intelligence and wellbeing of employees is key in every workplace.

Remember that cash is king
It is a brutal fact that even if you have the best business, product or service in the world; without money in your bank account you are unable to pay your suppliers, creditors or staff – let alone yourself!
You need to have a firm but fair approach to cash flow management and a constant eye on your bottom line, all of the time, not just at the end of the month or quarter! You need to scrutinise your debtors and maintain a strong and clear line of communication with your creditors to ensure you and any business partners are always on top of your current cash position.

Truly understand your business
You have to know what makes your business unique and what makes your specific service or product stand out. You should have USPs, which set you apart from your competition such as our unique Triple Point Guarantee. Consider new USPs you can offer and constantly ask yourself: “How is what I am doing now benefiting my business? Is what I am doing now the most effective use of my time?” Remember to work on your business NOT just in it!

Engagement is key
Social media is constantly evolving alongside all methods of communication, branding and marketing. To support your business, you need to constantly and consistently engage with your target audience in a meaningful, educational and non-confrontational way. Your business needs to be synonymous with quality and professionalism. Think about what messages you, your team and your social media channels are communicating about the brand and business.













Awards Date Is Extended

Article published by Dan Hayes

The Derbyshire Times Business Awards are almost upon us – and you now have even more time to enter your business for the high-profile prizes.

Due to the original date’s close proximity to the summer holidays – the deadline for entries has now been extended to Wednesday, September 21.The prestigious even – which aims to recognise and celebrate the very best in business and commerce across Chesterfield and the north Derbyshire area – will take place at Casa on Thursday, November 10.

Derbyshire Times editor, Phil Bramley, said: “Our awards ceremony is one of the highlights of the business calendar and attracts a wide range of entries from across al sectors from both small ad larger organisations.

“But the winners al have one thing in common – they are all truly excellent at what they do and have proved this by winning an award.

“If you want to follow in the footsteps of past winners, then now is the time to enter. Good luck everyone.”

Once again, the glittering black-tie evening will be hosted by Sam Orgrizovic – son of former Spireites ‘keeper Steve.

This year there are 15 categories, including Award: Hospitality, Leisure & Tourism and the Export and International Trade Award.

You can enter the awards on our website – Derbyshire-times.co.uk/businessawards – simply click on ‘Enter’ tab to pull up the form you need to fill out.

We wish you all good luck.



We recently held our first business breakfast event on strategies to win in business and what the world of sport can teach the world of business. It was a great success with over 50 business people including HR and finance professionals as well as business owners from the local Derby area attending. Everyone provided wonderful feedback on our very first quarterly event. We’d like to share below just a few of the super images from the morning.

All of the team here at Astute would like to thank Geldards and their marvellous marketing department for hosting the event, Shawn Ryder, photographer, and of course Neil Back, MBE and Damon Blakey of Fortius who were very generous with their time and shared some amazing (and funny) anecdotes from the world of sport!

We are looking forward to our next event on “Emotional Intelligence For Business Success“. Click the link to read more and confirm your attendance on 13th October.



Our successful year at Astute continues with us being named as 2016’s Best Small Business Recruitment Company by CV Magazine!

With a global network of 130,000 CEO’s, directors and other top-level decision makers, investors across the worlds of IT, training, manufacturing, marketing, design, retail and more, it is amazing for all of us here at Astute to have received this recognition as the best at what we do!

Below is the article which appeared in AI Global’s CV Magazine celebrating the crop of this years business award winners…

“From redundancy in 2009 Sarah Stevenson and Mary Maguire set up and established Astute Recruitment Ltd as a unique, multi-award winning accountancy recruitment business and brand. Regionally acknowledged as the expert in their sector, their core business is the recruitment of all levels of accountancy and finance professionals from ledger staff to Financial Directors.
Astute works across the East Midlands from their head office in Derby.  Astute’s second office in Nottingham 2015 reflected a mounting demand from business owners and hiring managers for skilled accountancy professionals.
18 months ago after a period of record growth, Sarah & Mary appointed a Non-Executive Director to focus the business and establish firm strategic plans. This included a total re-brand with a new website, corporate logo, state of the art IT system, accounting software and transformational messaging. All of this has enabled the brand to reach a wider audience.
Astute were then able to promote and educate the wider business community about their story.
Astute Recruitment is a Midlands based recruitment firm specialising in supporting small businesses. We profile the firm and explore the secrets behind it’s success.
and the great services they offer. Astute and Sarah and Mary have been shortlisted for a number of awards, including Sarah being awarded SME Small Business Director of the Year at the 2015 Institute of Directors East Midlands Business Awards. Sarah was also awarded the coveted Entrepreneur of the Year award 2015, by the Derbyshire Times. 2016 followed this success with Astute being recognised at the ICAEW’s awards in March winning East Midlands Business of the Year and announced as finalists this year for the second year running for the national Women In Business Awards.
One of the hardest things to overcome for recruitment businesses is a lack of trust generally in the recruitment sector. Often Astute’s clients have never used a recruitment agency before or had a bad experience with an existing supplier that’s soured their view of what a recruiter can do.
To give those who have not worked with Astute before, they have created their “Triple Point Guarantee”. This gives new customers the confidence to try their services risk free, safe in the knowledge that in the unlikely event that the firm doesn’t manage to fill a position within an agreed timescale, Astute will pay £500!”

To view the full article in CV Magazine on all the winners please click here.