We caught up with Matt Skelton our Head of Technology Recruitment to find out how things have been going since we launched our Technology Recruitment department earlier this year.

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Matt Skelton, Head of Technology Recruitment

Thanks for having a chat with us Matt, so what made you want to join us at The Candidate and how have you found it so far?
After 12 years working across the private and public IT recruitent sector for national agencies I took a 9 month break from work shortly after the birth of my first child.  When I started to think about the role I wanted to come back into, I knew that I didn't want to work for large national agency again. I wanted an exciting project with a smaller agency that had huge ambition. I'm born and bred in the North West too so the opportunity to work and make a difference regionally was also an essential part of my selection criteria. I spoke with a small number of really good Manchester based agencies but the project that Managing Partners at The Candidate, Brian Matthews and Colin Telford explained to me was my stand out option. They demonstrated a vision of growing a new technology recruitment team to sit alongside their expanding digital marketing and e-commerce divisions.  I met with the managers of those teams, Simon Clarke and Laura Walters, and realised that everyone shared the vision.  Initially, following my break and coming from a corporate recruitment background the energy and collaboration across the office took me a short period of time to adjust to.  Once I got to know the individual consultants in the office and understand the ethos of the consultants, managers and operations team the adjustment was much easier.  I have never worked in an environment like this; there is a huge work hard play hard culture and every week since I have been here we are over achieving team and company targets with everyone across the office contributing.

What makes The Candidate different to other Recruitment businesses you have worked in? 
I've mentioned it already but I have to go back to the energy and collaborative nature of the office. We discuss strategy and objectives as an office and not just in our individual teams; making everyone feel as though they're contributing. Reward and recognition don't necessarily go to the same consultants month in month out, even the smallest achievements are celebrated which is really encouraging for new consultants especially.  The marketing team sit amongst us which means that they are always on hand to change anything for us and do an incredible job of sourcing, creating, updating original and relevant content. We have brilliant relationships with the universities allowing interns to not only gain work experience but feel like they are really part of the team here.  Also, collaboration with events and organisations such as SASCon, MPA and the MMU Agency Life internship scheme means that I am closer than ever before to partnerships with the digital and technology communities across the region.  We are not heavily KPI driven and have a pragmatic approach to developing our consultants and rather than hit them with heavy KPI's we encourage them to use their talent through guidance and mentoring.

What has the reaction been?
Firstly, internally there was an immediate positive reaction to the Technology Team. The consultants across e-commerce and digital marketing made warm introductions to their existing clients. The advantage of this to us is that as an agency our supplier portfolio increases meaning our clients don't have to use multiple agencies for different types of requirements.  The reaction from candidates has also been nothing but positive as we have a great story to tell them and they know that they're dealing with someone who is trusted and respected across the sector.

What are your team working on at the minute?
Month on month we continue to over deliver. Our revenue is strong and our clients are coming back to us because of the quality of service they receive from the Technology Recruitment Team. Our main supply has been Software Developers, Web and Graphic Designers, UX/ UI, Software testing, Front End Developers and Database Administrators. However my background in senior IT placements has meant that more recently we have also started to supply Programme and Project Managers, Business Analysts and Technical Architects.

And what's the plans for the future?
The long-term plan is to continue to grow the team allowing us to cover all spectrums of technology and business change.  We can only do that by continuing to hire the right people.  We are looking for talented and ambitious individuals who will help us to expand our technology portfolio and grow tech into the primary revenue stream for the agency. This is the long term plan; so far everything is going fantastically and I look forward to growing a successful team as we take The Candidate through expansion in the next 5 years.

As always we are on the lookout for new talent to join our team so if you would like to join Matt's team or any of the teams at The Candidate get in touch today! Here is a list of all our current internal vacancies!

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