Attention for people: Kim Tomassen about the culture at STAR

General news

At STAR we know the market. That is why we know exactly what will help our clients and specialists. And as well as we know the market, we also want to know our people. “STAR is like a big family,” says HR Manager Kim Tomassen.


Powerful organisation

Kim has been working at STAR for more than ten years now. “After studying Management, Economics & Law I started at STAR as assistant to the operations manager. From there I took a new step every time.”

“At one point I was manager of the Compliance department. My colleague Linda Verbunt was HR manager at the time. Sil (Hoeve, CEO) suggested that we swap positions. He suspected that this switch suited our profiles. That turned out to be the case. We are now a few years further on and we still like it very much.”

In those ten years STAR has grown enormously, says Kim. “Our organisation has developed enormously. What has remained the same, however, is the focus on people. We continue to look at how people are doing. I think that makes us powerful as an organisation.”


Being accessible and involved

How is this attention expressed? “It’s often in the little things,” says Kim. “Hanging up balloons when it’s someone’s birthday. Sending flowers at an important personal moment. Or a phone call when someone is going through a difficult time. If people need it, we are there for them. It has always been like that in the past ten years.”

“Whether it is HR, Finance or Compliance, everyone is accessible to the specialists who work for STAR. The other way round: we also go to the people. We don’t want to just sit in our office in Moerdijk. We show our face.”

Of course, we would like to know what is going on there. “That is a nice thing about the STAR model: the recruitment consultants are at home in a specific discipline. That is an advantage when talking to specialists. It helps you to build a strong relationship. Clients benefit from it too, because we can help them formulate what their needs are.”



“Everyone works hard at STAR,” says Kim. “Both the people who run the primary process and the people around them who support it. We really all go for it.”

That’s why the attention to the people is more than deserved. “You also notice it at the Saint Nicholas and Christmas parties, where partners and children are also welcome. Those are moments when you feel that STAR is a kind of big family.”

Family also needs to be there when things get tough. “As an HR department, we look at whether people are in their prime. If not, we look at how we can help. An example: these days you have to wait in the queue for a long time before you can talk to a professional about your mental health. We work with an organisation that is well versed in this. If you work for us and you’re not feeling well, you can still talk to someone.”


What gives you energy

“And if people are in their prime, we look at how we can support them to become even better at their job. Then we consider: what are you looking for in an employer like STAR? Where do you want to go? What gives you energy? That is important.”

An organisation with a focus on people. That is what STAR also wants to be in its branches in the other countries. “The trick is to know each other well in the various countries and at the same time ensure that Belgium and Germany have their own culture. You cannot copy the office from one country to another,” Kim emphasises. “You have different cultures and you share a vision with each other. Together we look for the balance between them.”