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Published Apr 12, 2023 4 mins Reading time Back to articles

Unlocking Talent: Inclusive recruitment that transforms lives & boosts business. A case study

Explore the story of Kymbari, a small family-owned business based in Western Melbourne, overcame staff shortages and transformed lives with the help of Drake's inclusive recruitment partnership and the Jobs Victoria program. Discover the inspiring journey of Christian and how Kymbari plans to expand its workforce while making a positive social impact through employment.


 Factory worker on an ipad

The background

Kymbari is a family-owned business with a small number of employees, who experience an increased demand for additional help in the lead-up to the holiday season each year. Kymbari decided to hire seasonal staff to ensure their core team could focus on driving their business to new heights during the annual production rush. 

As with comparable manufacturers in the Western Melbourne region, attracting and retaining a high-performing workforce can be an ongoing challenge. With local competition for talent at an all-time high, they were not only struggling to maintain their production and operational targets due to staff shortages but  also faced the challenge of enticing new part-time employees to join their team during the festive peak period.

Similar to most prospective employers, Kymbari initially explored online job boards but encountered limited success. Market competition for high-quality talent is such that workers can move from role to role without even applying for open positions. That is when Kymbari decided to team up with Drake’s specialist blue-collar recruitment team, crafting a staffing solution tailor-made for this growing small business in consideration of its talent challenges out in the west of Melbourne. 

How Drake and jobs Victoria support inclusive recruitment

Drake offered Kymbari a social procurement employment solution and organised an introduction to Jobs Victoria. Drake is a proud partner of Jobs Victoria, a Victorian Government initiative designed to help job seekers overcome employment barriers and connect them with employers like Kymbari. Jobs Victoria’s network of employment partners such as Drake, ensures jobseekers not only find a job,  but are also provided with ongoing support in the form of mentoring, training, and development to help them excel in their roles.

The results

The results were heartwarming. Drake successfully placed Christian, who had been facing an uphill battle in his job search for more than 12 months. The stigma associated with long-term unemployment had underpinned Christian’s success and ultimately his confidence.   The job opportunity proved to be a turning point in his life, rebuilding his confidence and prospects.

“We are very thankful for the relationship between Jobs Victoria and Drake and are proud to contribute to our social inclusion responsibilities as a small business,” said Rachael, Kymbari’s owner. “To us, this is all about giving people who struggle, opportunities and purpose and is a great example of inclusive recruitment.”  

Understandably, the client had limited knowledge of the type of talent available from the Jobs Victoria program. What would the performance or reliability of an individual who had experienced long-term unemployment be like? Kymbari was also concerned they may not have the time or resources necessary to invest in the employee to bring out his or her best. Any concerns were soon allayed following the placement.  Christian was offered a role at Kymbari as an all-round Factory Hand, an entry-level position with a strong pathway to future vocational opportunities.

The role was tailored specifically to Christian, with Drake, Jobs Victoria and Kymbari working together at the start to ensure the necessary skills, values, and vocational training were provided, and a smooth transition was in place. As part of the support provided by Jobs Victoria, Christian was supported through his first six months with mentoring and guidance to help him thrive in his new job. Having an extra hand to count on has proven invaluable to Kymbari. With Christian part of the team, time-consuming tasks are now accounted for freeing management and the wider team to redirect their efforts.

Over the next few years, Kymbari hopes to expand – supported along the journey by individuals such as Christian, and Drake’s employee services stream. When asked about his new role Christian said, “I’m really enjoying the work, especially the production runs.  I feel so much more positive.  Looking for work and having the constant rejections was tough”. Christian now has stable employment, a clear progression path and an employer invested in his success. 

Kymbari's story is one of hope, transformation, and community collaboration, where inclusive recruitment and a dedicated partnership with Jobs Victoria has changed a life and provided a new recruitment pathway for the beverage manufactuer. To learn more on ways to mitigate bias from your recruitment process, explore some top tips

For more information on best practices when it comes to inclusive recruitment and selection, get in touch with our team today. 

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