The story begins in 1999 when Inspired Selection emerged as the brainchild of two visionary individuals who embarked on a journey to engage academic publishers in Oxford, seeking to forge partnerships with a specialised publishing recruitment agency. Pioneering the field, we swiftly garnered the attention of esteemed institutions like Oxford University Press and Taylor & Francis, catapulting us to the forefront of the industry.

As word of our remarkable achievements spread like wildfire, we ventured beyond Oxford, opening our doors to a bustling London office in 2003. Not only did we expand geographically, but we also broadened our horizons by diversifying our publishing sectors to include Trade publishing, Educational Publishing, and what we now refer to as Professional publishing.

In 2008, we embarked on an exciting chapter of growth by joining forces with a dynamic group of recruitment agencies operating in related domains such as media. This alliance infused us with renewed energy, enabling us to surmount challenges even during the subsequent economic recession. Undeterred, we persisted in our mission, epitomizing resilience and fortitude. In 2010, we welcomed Suzy Astbury as our esteemed Managing Director, further bolstering our leadership team.

In 2013, buoyed by our passion for publishing, Suzy Astbury and her business partner Andy Mintern orchestrated a buyout, leading to the rebirth of our organization as Inspired Search and Selection. Once again, we focused solely on publishing, the very essence of our existence, and recommitted ourselves to our core strengths.

Our journey of transformation continued in 2014 when we launched not one, but two iterations of our cutting-edge website (a tale shared by many, no doubt – so many lessons learnt). Driven by our unwavering vision and values, we realigned our objectives, relocated to London Bridge, and embarked on a trajectory of sustained growth and prosperity. Motivated by our achievements, we aspired to enhance our offerings to clients and candidates alike.

In 2015, Inspired Temps was born, mirroring the success of our permanent and interim divisions. This novel venture allowed us to provide experienced publishing talent across all roles and levels on temporary contracts, with the added advantage of hourly pay facilitated through Inspired's seamless operations. Simplicity became our watchword, and through unwavering dedication, we continually refined our processes, harnessing the power of advanced technology to streamline operations and ensure compliance.

Driven by heightened demand in 2017, we introduced Inspired Search, appointing Abigail Barclay as the Search Director to spearhead this division. Our ability to offer an in-depth, research-led service for high-level positions proved immensely rewarding, as it empowered our clients to make informed decisions, mitigate risks, and attain a comprehensive view of the market landscape.

In 2018, we proudly published our inaugural White Paper, authored by the illustrious Abigail Barclay, delving into the realm of hiring talent from outside the publishing industry. This milestone marked the beginning of an ongoing series of thought-provoking publications, including papers on Succession Planning, Women in Leadership, and Investing in Returning to Work.

As 2019 unfolded, we joyfully celebrated our 20th anniversary, commemorating this remarkable milestone by interviewing and showcasing the journeys of 20 influential figures in the publishing world through our engaging podcasts, available in the library section of our website.

The year 2020 presented unforeseen challenges, compelling us to pivot, adapt, and navigate uncharted waters akin to an intense two-year-long game of netball. While we prioritized safety by embracing remote work and adhering to social distancing measures, our commitment to our clients and candidates remained unwavering.

Over the past 5 years we are proud to have been the recipient of 8 industry awards:

  • REC AWARDS – Best Recruitment Agency under 20 people 2019 – Winner
  • Southwark Business Awards – Best Small Business 2019 – Winner 
  • REC Best Permanent Recruiter 2022 – Esme Richardson – Winner 
  • REC Best Candidate Experience 2022 – Rhiannon Griffiths – Winner 
  • REC Agency Star of the year 2023 - Abigail Barclay - Winner
  • REC Best Newcomer in Permanent Recruitment - Rhianna Patmore - Winner
  • IPG Independent Publisher Award for Services to Independent Publishers 2024 - Winner
  • The Sunday Times Top 10 Best Place to Work 2024 - Winner

In 2024 we are proud to be celebrating 25 years of Inspired!

inspired 25 year logo


At Inspired, we aspire to maintain our unrivaled reputation as the foremost choice for publishers seeking talent and team expansion. Our deep industry knowledge, unwavering values, and unmatched quality of work position us as the trusted partner in the UK and beyond.

Stone circle

We are guided by our four values: 

Inclusivity – celebrating and impacting greater inclusion and diversity in every action we take and conversation we have 

Empowerment – sharing knowledge and ideas with our candidates, our clients and our colleagues to  enable them to make brilliant decisions, hire great people and lift people up in our community 

Kindness –  caring genuinely and authentically for each other, our candidates and our clients 

Collaboration – working collaboratively, supporting our clients', candidates' and our teams' needs with our expertise

Pencils in a jar

We realised very last minute that we needed someone to help us prepare some data for an upcoming launch. Suzy and her team were brilliant - quickly getting to grips with our requirements and finding us a great temp with very little notice; Friday afternoon to start Monday morning! I wouldn't hesitate to use them again in future to find suitable candidates to fill a permanent role or for short-term staffing needs.


CMO, Altmetric