HR & Employment Law Manager



SMEs. Start-ups.


Being the client’s internal HR Manager and encouraging them to unlock the potential of their employees while focusing upon strategic growth within their company.


Tech. Health sciences. Software based companies.


Based in our Glasgow office, Ailsa Smillie is a highly experienced HR Manager and is responsible for all aspects of the HR function for her clients. Ailsa is passionate about breaking down the barriers between employers and employees and working together to grow the company and establish an employer of choice brand.

 Honest advice

“To me, there are three things that are essential for a strong relationship with a client: openness, honesty and mutual respect. Clients can always expect honesty, professionalism and a jargon-free approach to advice and guidance from us. I always strive to provide informed advice to my client and not just what I think the client wants to hear as I feel it’s important not to be afraid to have those difficult conversations with clients. My favourite thing to do is to challenge everything, which I believe is essential to consistently generate innovative ideas to solving our clients’ problems. An ex-colleague once told me, “just because you’ve done it before, doesn’t mean it is right,” and this has stuck with me and I’m always trying to think of new ways of working for our clients.”

Every business is unique

“I personally enjoy the variety of work that working in HR offers me. The opportunity to work with different clients allows me to gain exposure to an array of interesting businesses and various industries. No two days or businesses are ever the same and not every idea will work for every business, so we must take the time to get to know each client and consider their working environment when proposing ideas. We always aim to tailor our approach or ideas specifically to what will suit each client’s culture.”

Positive thinking

“When we’re spending the majority of our day at work, I believe it’s important create a positive and light-hearted culture in the workplace. Similarly, when I approach my work, I focus upon the positive outcome it will have for the client, such as developing a new way of doing things that could improve employee engagement in their workplace.

I also love that there are endless learning opportunities. Within our team, we all have different areas of enthusiasm or expertise so it’s great being able to learn from my colleagues and gain their different ideas, viewpoints or perceptions on a situation. I believe that is the beauty of the HR discipline, there is never a one-size-fits-all solution and it’s our job to provide our clients with the right advice to make the right decisions.”

Keeping it jargon-free

“I’m known for my ability to be straight talking with a no-frills approach. To me, a spade is a spade, and I don’t see the need to overcomplicate things for our clients. I believe it’s essential to break things down and explain them in a way that everyone can understand, follow and get on board with. I feel that clients really appreciate this jargon-free approach which often allows me to build relationships with them quickly.

A client once said to me, “talking to you just makes everything better and a bit easier,” and I thought this was lovely as sometimes HR can be viewed negatively but it was great to hear that discussing problems and solutions with the client makes them feel better and a bit more positive about everything.”

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  1. Blog28th Feb 2024

    Ailsa Smillie, author of blog about Employee Appreciation Day

    The Importance Of Celebrating National Employee Appreciation Day

    Employee Appreciation Day is celebrated on the first Friday of March every year. It’s important to make your employees feel appreciated and valued every day. However, this day is a great opportunity to do so on a bigger scale. Showing…

    By Ailsa Smillie

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