Annabel currently owns a recruitment company Blaikie Recruitment in Central Otago. She attended St Hilda's from 1978-1982, and after completing tertiary study in Christchurch, she taught in Wellington before embarking on an OE which took her to many countries and allowed her to experience many cultures and lifestyles.
Annabel began her career in recruitment while on an OE in Edinburgh in the mid-1980’s. After assisting the owner develop her business and successfully transition to another agency startup, she realised that she was hooked on the HR sector. "During that time the UK was ripe for opportunities, particularly in the temp sector. You could say that the UK economy was light years ahead of Australasia, particularly New Zealand, so by the time I got back to NZ in the mid-1990s I was ready to explore what could be achieved back here." In 1993 she purchased the Dunedin HR firm Select Personnel and spent the next 4 years developing the industrial arm. She then sold that business to pursue university studies in marketing.
"Fast forward 15 years and it didn’t take long until I recognised the opportunity for a boutique recruitment agency in Central Otago, so I established Blaikie Recruitment in 2015." Since that time, she has developed Blaikie as the “go to” agency for both temp & permanent employees in Central Otago. "As we are locally based we have our “ear to the ground” in terms of what’s happening in this region," she says.
Annabel employs a small team of consultants (including herself). "As we are the only Central Otago based agency, we have significant advantages over our larger competitors in the sense that we are nimble, flexible and able to cater for short notice placements." The company maintains offices in Cromwell, overlooking Lake Dunstan, and has satellite offices in Wanaka and, when necessary, in Queenstown. "Our company motto says “clocking off is not our culture” and we are proud of what we have achieved."
Annabel is also active in governance, holding several positions on boards in the Otago region. She is also a former Otago and Scotland women's rugby representative, half-marathon runner, and is still a very keen traveller. Her daughter, age 21, is currently on a full USA University soccer scholarship in Tennessee, so her recent travels have taken her throughout North America.
To find out more about Blaikie Recruitment, visit www.blaikieconsulting.co.nz