Meet Tina! Associate Director

Engineering, Manufacturing & Supply Chain Recruitment

Meet Tina! Associate Director for Nine Twenty

 4th Nov 2020

 We welcomed Tina Smith to Nine Twenty Manufacturing & Engineering, who has joined our team as an Associate Director. We had a chat with Tina to find out how she’s settling into the role.


Can you tell us a little about your background before you joined the team at Nine Twenty?

I have been in recruitment for 23 years this year and I am still hugely passionate about the industry. Latterly, I have worked in house as a Recruitment Manager (Finance/Government/Drinks) which gave me a good insight of the functionality of the workforce plans and the structure of long term, educating the reality of attracting new talent, providing a solution …and how companies prefer to work with Recruitment agencies……   

I fell into recruitment after being made redundant from a concession of Kurt Geiger shoes which was owned by Harrods at the time. I did not want to go back into retail and I saw an ad in the local newspaper, for an Admin Assistant. Little did I know it was for a recruitment company which specialised in Catering and Domestic – I really enjoyed the vibe and the interaction with clients and candidates, to which I was quickly moved up to be a Recruitment Consultant. As cliché as it may sound, I enjoyed making a difference in people lives and thrived on a challenge, (getting through as many pages of the Yellow Pages as possible) this was the career that matched my personality and aspirations.

I wanted to gain more “professional” training in the commercial world and decided to work with a blue-chip organisation for over a year, which did not bode well with me as I did not have the freedom to flex my solution for my customers. Thereafter, I entered the world of a small, specialised agency, recruiting all over the world in Pharmaceuticals, IT, and Aviation. This was a real eye-opening experience and even had the opportunity of presenting to clients overseas.

After relocating, I joined a team to help build a new business and we took it by storm. This was a great experience of driving the first candidate and client onto the database and taking your business into the business world, not knowing how it would go… this was really was one of my greatest achievements with a smashing bunch of people.

My life journey then brought me to Scotland – it was “the” worst time to come, as 2007 was the beginning of the credit crunch and I think in 9 months, I had worked for 3 different agencies – but, I was determined. I finally ended up with Hays for the following 6 years, where I recruited in financial services, managed a Volume Delivery team, and then became their Talent Acquisition Partner for Scotland and Ireland. This is when I felt that I wanted to re-invent myself, using my transferable skills, to become more of an expert in house….. but there has always been something missing…..


What attracted you to working with our team?

Karen Stewart – in a nutshell. I see the passion and drive in Karen, and she has made me want that again, making me believe I am not too old…. just yet. Karen’s team has been great to deal with as a client and I really saw that they were “working as a team”. In recruitment, we are hunters and drive ourselves to ensure that we are successful, but rarely do you find a team, that wants to work for the greater good and support each other in a very collaborative fashion.  


What is your focus over the next 3 months?

My recruitment experience is very varied, but I have really enjoyed working in the Manufacturing space. Due to working on a global platform, I feel that this is where I would like to make a difference to the existing clients of Nine Twenty (and new) and expand the network of opportunities to the market. I will be looking at building the brand as “Global” and work in partnership with companies to attract the best talent for their teams. 


You have just completed your first week, how has it been, and what have you been up to?

My first week was very daunting …. After 7 months of not working per say, only using my brain to work out “who did it” on the latest crime programme I had been watching, turning on a laptop was a bit of a drum roll. I managed to remember how to work my way around the systems and surprised myself that I could still type. The first week was building my confidence and preparing myself for the next life challenge.


Tell us more about who you are out of work? 

I am a social butterfly who gravitates towards nice food, wine, and weird and wonderful, beautiful places. I love new experiences of talking to different people from all walks of life and learning about new cultures. I am a person who appreciates the beauty around me, and since welcoming our new boarder collie pup into our home, we are forever in the countryside, being amazed that it has taken me years to realise what Scotland has to offer.


If you'd like to chat with Tina about your career, you can get in touch at


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