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Steeple Aston

9-2-3 is a recruitment agency that specialises in placing high quality candidates into jobs with hours that fit in around the school run.

News and Events

Welcome to the News and Events section of our website. Here you can find out what the 9-2-3 team have been up to, and keep up to date with flexible working events.

You can also listen to our series of podcasts, ‘Flexibly Speaking.

Supporting women in the workplace
Last night, Helen spoke at a CIPD event to showcase how businesses can support women in the workplace by offering flexible working, and family-friendly policies. Of the roughly 35 businesses attending, happily some were already flexing it. Interestingly however, a fear of ‘opening the floodgates’ was the main reason for their organisations not embracing change. So, this was a fabulous opportunity to encourage businesses to open those floodgates - and see the benefits for themselves!
5 March 2019


Celebrating the Disability Confident scheme
The Disability Confident scheme aims to help employers make the most of the opportunities provided by employing disabled people. It's voluntary, and has been developed by employers and disabled people’s representatives. So, we were thrilled to be invited to talk at the event hosted by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). Helen was advocating flexible working for everyone, and explored how small changes to the standard working day can enable new talent to take part and thrive. We heard how businesses, including Microsoft UK, Oxfordshire Employment Services and others, have embraced those opportunities. 
22 February 2019

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Episode 4: Working flexibly with disabilities in the workplace. Our latest podcast is now live! This time around we chat to Diane Lightfoot, CEO of Business Disability Forum. Consider this: 18 per cent of the working age population in the UK are living with a disability, and this rises to 44% in those over 65. This is a huge talent pool ready to contribute their skill and expertise to our local businesses. In this episode, Diane chats to us about the ways that employers can enhance the workplace for those with disabilities, so that everyone can be their best.
Listen now.
21 February 2019

Flash mobs with Mother Pukka, hot pink cat's Pregnant then Screwed Live!
On Saturday, we attended the fabulously inspiring Pregnant then Screwed Live event in central London. Billed as a festival of motherhood and work, it was an absolute privilege to be seated on the Flexible Working speakers panel. As well as taking part in Mother Pukka's flash mob (our Jenna totally rocked the 9-2-3 hot pink cat suit!), we conducted one-on-one appointments with mums who wanted to know how to approach flexible working with their employer. We also chatted to women who wanted to find a career that would match their skill set - without the need to take a huge pay cut, just because they needed to be there for school or nursery pick up.
We sat in a room packed FULL of talented, intelligent, professional women who all wanted to work flexibly. Employees need this, businesses need this, and we currently have a HUGE pool of talent just waiting to be utilised. If you haven't already come across Joelie and her incredible team at Pregnant then Screwed,then you have to check them out. They deserve a massive round of applause for all their efforts in pulling off such a wonderful day. We cannot wait for the next one!
Listen to some fab soundbites from the event, including TV Presenter Kate Quilton, Freelance Journalist Robyn Wilder, and Anna Whitehouse aka Mother Pukka, all sharing their take on the mum/work/life juggle.
19 January 2019

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Episode 3: Combatting the gender pay gap, with Patrick Alleyne
Our latest podcast is now available, and it's rather brilliant even if we say so ourselves. 2018 thrust the gender pay gap into the limelight. So, this time around, we speak with Patrick Alleyne, who has a wealth of HR experience with London Gov, and currently works with Gapsquare – a company who provides innovative tech to firms that helps them understand and rectify the gender pay gap. Patrick explains how a targeted, informed approach is the most effective tool for tackling wage inequality in our workplaces. So, grab a coffee and have a listen - we're sure you'll find it as informative as we did.
Download the podcast.
14 December 2018


9-2-3 Working Forward in Manchester
Last week we headed up to Manchester to support the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s nationwide ‘Working Forward Pledge’, at a campaign event. 9-2-3’s Lucy Haworth took part as a key speaker, and outlined the business case for flexible working to employers across Manchester. The Working Forward campaign is backed by some of the UK’s leading businesses and industry bodies, and is designed to make workplaces the best they can be for pregnant women and new parents. Since 2015, we have been just one of a few agencies that solely deal in flexible job roles for experienced professionals. This year, the flexible working movement has gained real momentum. Tangible benefits range from less traffic congestion in our towns and cities, to increased productivity and greater staff retention. Lucy concluded: “We’re thrilled to be involved in the Working Forward Pledge. It’s a fantastic platform from which to bang the flexible working drum. The business case for offering flexible working is clear, the benefits are measurable, and it plays an essential role in allowing our businesses, our employees, and society as a whole, to thrive.”
14 December 2018

Flexible working in the automotive industry
Today, 9-2-3’s Founder, Helen Wright is bringing flexible working to the motorsport industry! She is Key Speaker at the ABP Women’s Automotive event at Williams F1 HQ. Flexible working offers universal, tangible benefits, and we are thrilled to have the opportunity to chat with successful, brilliant women who work in such a dynamic, high-profile industry.
5 December 2018

Helen at ABP Women’s Automotive, Williams F1 HQ

Helen at ABP Women’s Automotive, Williams F1 HQ

Welcome to our new home!
After much waiting, anticipation, and late-night trips to IKEA, we have finally moved into our new offices in Tackley, Oxfordshire. We have said a fond and emotional farewell to the shed in Helen’s back garden, where the 9-2-3 story began back in 2015. Steady growth and continued success meant that we outgrew our humble beginnings, and needed more space to accommodate our incredible team.
3 December 2018

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The 9-2-3 team settle into their new home.

The 9-2-3 team settle into their new home.

How to kick off your flexible working request
Our second Flexibly Speaking podcast is available to download now! This time around, we look at the best way to ask your employer for flexible working, and chat to Danielle Ayres, a Senior Associate at Gorvin's in Manchester. Danielle specialises in pregnancy and maternity discrimination and absolutely knows her stuff! This episode is a positive, informative look at how to ask for flexi working arrangements. It covers everything you need to make your flexible working request successful, including: planning your approach, considering the impact on the team, and the importance of getting it right first time. All this, and we share some of our own personal stories of the work vs childcare juggle. We were thrilled to chat with Danielle about the options available when it comes to asking for some flex. Enjoy!
21 November 2018

Podcast episode 2: Jenna, Danielle and Kat recording in Manchester

Podcast episode 2: Jenna, Danielle and Kat recording in Manchester

9-2-3 explore the Gender Pay Gap
On Wednesday, 9-2-3’s Founder, Helen Wright was invited to speak as a panellist at ‘The Gender Pay Gap and Beyond’. The event was a brilliant, insightful look at the gender pay gap from all angles. It was hosted by Understanding Society, the largest longitudinal study of its kind, which provides crucial information for researchers and policymakers on the changes and stability of people's lives in the UK.   
Helen attended alongside a host of inspiring speakers, from the Institute for Fiscal Studies, The Fawcett Society and University of Oxford’s Department of Social Policy and Intervention. Discussions looked at: employer responses and behaviours to the gender pay; how can we encourage more flexible working? How can greater employer or sectoral ownership be encouraged? It was fantastic to be involved, and you can find out more here.
Coming soon… Helen also recorded a fantastic podcast with Fran Bennett (active member of Women’s Budget Group, and Senior Research and Teaching Fellow at Oxford University) and Sam Smethers (Director of the Fawcett Society). We’ll share the link once we have it!
7 November 2018

Helen records podcast on the gender pay gap

Helen records podcast on the gender pay gap

Flexibly Speaking: 9-2-3 launch their first podcast
As a business, how do you deal with flexible working requests? Are you worried about ‘opening the floodgates?’ We’ve been working alongside the employment law team at Knights PLC, to put together a podcast aimed at helping businesses navigate their way through all these issues. ‘Flexibly Speaking’ is the first in a series of podcasts exploring flexible working from all angles. The first episode provides guidance, support and practical tips on ways managers can make flexible working a success for their business and their staff. The podcast is available to download. Look out for the second episode soon, featuring Gorvin’s solicitors. This time the focus is on employees who want to know their rights, and how to request flexible working.
2 November 2018

9-2-3’s Helen recording our first ‘Flexibly Speaking’ podcast with the employment law team at Knights PLC.

9-2-3’s Helen recording our first ‘Flexibly Speaking’ podcast with the employment law team at Knights PLC.

9-2-3 launch in Manchester
We’re thrilled to finally be up and running in Manchester. If you’re a professional looking for a flexible role, or if you would like to talk to us about finding the perfect candidates for your flexible business, please get in touch with Kat Higgins, who heads up our Manchester office.
8 October 2018

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National Flexible Working Day 2018
Thanks to everyone who supported the launch of our first ever National Flexible Working Day 2018 on 12th September. The day was a huge success, and has really helped to put the spotlight on flexible working: how to make it work, the benefits, and why now is the time to introduce flexibility in our workplaces. NFWD was featured on BBC Radio 5 Live, BBC Radio Oxford, BBC Radio West Midlands, and BBC Radio Gloucestershire, plus local press. Your support across our social media channels was immense! #letsallflextogetherday was trending on Twitter, and high-profile flexible-working campaigners including Mother Pukka and Pregnant then Screwed, also gave us a shout-out! Thankyou!
12 September 2018

9-2-3’s Helen, with BBC Radio Oxford’s Kat Orman, talking about National Flexible Working Day.

9-2-3’s Helen, with BBC Radio Oxford’s Kat Orman, talking about National Flexible Working Day.