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StopGap Consultant

Claire Owen

Leader of Vision & Values



The Serious Bit

Claire's been the builder and owner of Stopgap since day one in 1993 and is as passionate and inspiring as ever about making a positive difference to the lives of candidates and clients alike.

Having done a degree in Business Studies, Claire spent the next six years working in sales promotion for various London agencies before her employer went into administration and she found herself without a job. She then set up Stopgap in 1993 with no recruitment experience whatsoever, but simply a strong desire to challenge the recruitment industry’s reputation for bad practice and poor candidate care. Over 20 years on, Claire has remained true to her five key guiding principles of collaboration, passion, integrity, agility and daring, which fuel the company from its very roots. Having built up a network of over a quarter of a million people and having made over 30,000 placements, Stopgap is still thriving today under Claire’s leadership and continues to be hugely successful within the marketing recruitment space.

The Fun Bit

My first job ever was...

...running an illicit ear-piercing business in the girls toilets at school, aged 14.

The most daring thing I've ever done is...                     

...setting up Stopgap with no experience of recruitment, no money, and a four week old baby.

In my spare time you can find me...

on the golf course at my home club, The Wisley, pushing to get my handicap down to 18 this year! Alternatively I love eating good food and drinking great wine, and am passionate about my position as Vice Chair on the Duke of Edinburgh’s Women in Business Committee.

Claire found me my current role at Age UK, and several previous roles. Claire has a fantastic ability to match people and places, and seems to understand client needs more than any other agency I've worked with. I have since used Stop Gap on numerous occasions to help find me the perfect team. I would recommend Claire and her team as being of the very highest standard in recruitment.

Marianne Hewitt
Head of Brand, Age UK