Since 2011, Shawbrook Bank has grown and changed rapidly. With a reputation for disrupting the market, the Shawbrook team understood that they needed support to organise and create a talent acquisition strategy that would prepare them for the future and enable them to push forward with their growth plans. The intent was, and is, to reduce recruitment costs and also improve the quality of hire – no mean feat in an increasingly challenging specialist banking sector.

With this in mind, Cielo was selected in 2016 to provide a Total Talent Acquisition solution for Shawbrook Bank with a goal to fill around 200 positions (permanent, fixed-term contract and contractor hires) a year across all of Shawbrook’s UK locations (Brentwood, Redhill, West Malling, London, Peterborough, Manchester and Glasgow). Shawbrook also wanted to accelerate the development of their employer brand presence that aligned with the growth of the business.

Building a Partnership, Boosting a Brand
In the implementation phase of our partnership, Cielo designed, built, and executed a Total Talent Acquisition solution that delivered recruitment excellence right from the start. Treating talent as one ecosystem and having one consultative point of contact for hiring managers to access any type of resource. This means that the talent acquisition process, whether it's for permanent, experienced, executive search, contractor, early talent, or fixed-term roles is consistently of top quality.

The Cielo WE BECOME YOU™ philosophy has enabled the dedicated Shawbrook talent acquisition team to understand their business and talent acquisition strategy, their industry and their locations. As a result of our partnership, they have seen results with real business impact. Cielo is now fully embedded into Shawbrook’s culture, allowing our on-site team to internalise our expertise to find and hire top-quality talent.

Given Shawbrook’s growth strategy, employer brand presence is vital. To fully support this strategy, Cielo’s Brand & Communication team conducted an accelerated messaging workshop with a core group of employees. The 2.5-hour workshop covered every element of their Employer Value Proposition (EVP) and delivered rich, unique insights that enabled us to create compelling copy for a careers microsite within just 48 hours. Partnering closely with Shawbrook’s creative marketing team, we achieved website signoff and ATS integration within three weeks. This has provided a better user experience for external candidates when they are considering joining Shawbrook by making the careers site mobile friendly and rolling out a diagnostic tool to help shape the EVP moving forwards.

Due to rapid expansion, Shawbrook was previously dependent on utilising agencies for different HR solutions to source talent for over 80% of its vacancies. With Cielo on board, 80% direct recruitment was achieved in the first quarter of 2017 alone, resulting in a substantial decrease in agency spend: 44% lower than the same period a year before. Roll onto 2019 / 2020 and agency hires are at 8%.

After six months of partnering with Cielo, Shawbrook’s average time to hire had been reduced to 22 days (against a staffing industry average of 35 to 45 days). But now we see a healthier 30 days to help with increasing the quality of hire and retention of top talent.

Year two of the service was about continuing to deliver against the standards set by the new service in year one and driving continuous improvement through key initiatives, including:

  • The creation of a psychometric assessment, which was deployed to enhance the quality and culture fit of candidates.
  • The introduction and implementation of our “Bridge” service – so that Cielo could take complete responsibility for the candidate experience from offer and acceptance to start date, including contract generation and background screening. This now includes Exit Interviews for all regretted leavers so we can react to what leavers are telling us and provide annual rechecks on the Senior Manager population as per the industry regulations.
  • Collaborating with Shawbrook’s HR team to support the creation of a new approach to job banding and overall career development

Due to the highly skilled Cielo team, the partnership approach of Shawbrook, and the great foundations built in year one, positive results have continued with a new contract extension. At the end of H2 2019, there is a highly trusted, advisory and SME resourcing function which has seen year on year hiring manager satisfaction, quality of hires and direct fills increased. The introduction of the Cielo offsite sourcing team has resulted in zero agency contractor hiring since June 2019, saving Shawbrook £1.5m across total talent.

Finally, other added value projects have been:

  • Getting all new role approvals online through the ATS – creating audit trails ensuring it is easy to report on live job roles.
  • Implementing a “Ready State” IR35 process for all contractors and that has been live since January 2020.