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Labs hiring and recruiting: the unfiltered truth

October 10, 2017

Labs hiring and recruiting: the unfiltered truth

Morgan Sowden, CTO at Labs, noticed many of the most talented people he’d met over the years rarely had conventional CVs. “Their curiosity and drive meant they had done many different things over their work life. This type of individual would clearly not pass a computer filter or conventional human recruiter.”

When recruiting for Labs, Morgan tries to ensure such unique candidates are not winnowed out of the process. This means going through a much larger pool of unfiltered CVs. “It’s more work,” admitted Morgan, “but lands you more interesting candidates.”

Potential candidates are primarily found online through tech boards and LinkedIn profile searches. But job fairs, such as Silicon Milkroundabout, and referrals still play a significant role.

“It's a big stamp of approval if someone is willing to recommend someone they know,” said Sam Handfield-Jones. As Director of Labs, Sam is highly involved in the hiring process. “I love it. Meeting new people, asking questions and finding out what they do, what excites them — I feel very lucky to have this as part of my job.”

Harriet Smith, a recruiter at Octopus, is Passion-oriented, describing passion as the top attribute she looks for in an OI candidate. ”People must be passionate, whether it be about coding, people or data, or changing the way we work.” Even passion towards outside office activities counts for Harriet.

Other key attributes Harriet looks for: Humility, prioritising the work at hand and not the personal glory; Tech Obsessed (“we love people who live and breath all things tech”); and Diversity (“we have a very international team and plan to keep it that way”).

Diversity is not simply a buzzword at Labs. It cuts to the heart of the company’s core values. Nearly half of Labs employees come from a diverse international background. Sexual orientation is inclusive and welcoming. And women comprise 41% of Labs employees, with many women in key leadership roles. “Maintaining a good gender balance is something I am passionate about and work very hard to achieve and maintain,” said Morgan.

Once a good candidate is found, Labs wastes no time bringing them onboard. “We try to complete the process within two visits to the office,” stated Harriet.

Sam is quick to point out that hiring is only the first step. “You can hire the best people in the world but unless you give them the right environment they will not reach their potential.” Constant support and development play an important role at Labs. According to Sam, “creating an environment that stretches people to deliver beyond what they thought they were capable of. It encourages them to learn new things, be curious, understand what their peers do, take on bigger, scarier tasks and challenge the status quo.”

Sound like something you’d be interested in? Check out our careers page for all current openings, or drop us a message and say hello – we’d love to hear from you!