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Kelly Harrison: 8 Years with D&B

Kelly Harrison: 8 Years with D&B

about 2 years ago By Karis McKenna
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Our NSW State Manager Kelly Harrison has a recruitment career spanning almost 16 years across 3 different countries, in which half of this time was spent with us at Design & Build. She’s been instrumental to the growth of our Sydney office having started when it was just a team of 4. 8 years on, 3 offices later and a team of 20 plus, we caught up with Kelly to celebrate her 8 year anniversary!


For those who don't know, can you tell us how long you have now been with D&B and what was your first recruiting desk?

This week it will have been 8 years with Design and Build. My first desk back in 2012 was Technical Services Mining Desk where I recruited for a few months before setting up the Residential Construction desk.


Can you give us a brief overview of your journey from that position to your position now NSW State Manager?

I started in a team of 4 of us in 2012, to 3 offices later and a team of 20+ . My D&B journey has gone from starting as a Senior Consultant, to Lead Consultant, to a Team Leader and NSW State Manager as of 2019.


“Quite simply we would not be where we are without Kelly. Kelly embodies everything that is good about D&B and I am incredibly fortunate to have spent the last 8 years working alongside her.”

Andrew McGregor, Managing Director 



This could be a tough one but, what has been your biggest highlight of your time with us?

For me, it’s been the success of others around me and watching their hard work pay off. Watching consultants get their first big comms check! Or my personal billings record in 2018. 


What is your funniest memory of your time here?

Too many to mention and too many unfit for print!…. A particular Thursday back in 2018 that we refer to as “The greatest afternoon in recruitment ever” OR – the time we were so loud once in a bar we were asked to leave and only to be allowed re-entry as they thought I was deaf and I had to sign for the rest of the evening before we were rumbled. Anytime we announce the winner of the office Quote book. Special mention to Luke, Sophie and Anca for making this so entertaining!


What do you enjoy most about recruiting within the built environment space?

Down to earth professionals with honest communications. Also, that I genuinely am interested in the industry and have recruited in to the construction / engineering space for over 15 years in 3 countries (UK, UAE and Australia). I can’t imagine doing anything else.


What advice can you give for those struggling with the job market just now?

Never give up. Have a plan and stick to it. Don’t over promise. Do what you say you are going to do, when you are going to do it. Always agree your next action. Celebrate the small wins every day and never leave the office (your WFH set up!) feeling like you didn’t achieve anything.


What are some of the hottest jobs your team have on at the moment?

  • Jackson has a great opportunity on for a Senior Geotechnical Engineer with a leading Australian Engineering Consultancy based in Sydney.
  • Denise has a Project Manager Role on with a Defence Contractor in the Northern Territory.
  • Anca has a Revit Drafting Role on with a leading home builder in Paramatta.
  • Aaron is working with a local Property Developer who are looking for a Property manager for their eastern suburbs portfolio.
  • Alex Scott has a retained role for a Project Manager with a leading International Rail Contractor in Sydney.