How did you start your career in Opencast and could you describe your journey?
“Like others I know working in recruitment, I stumbled into it really. After leaving school I started working in the beauty industry, but after a while I realised progression or promotion was going to take some time. I decided to become a teacher so completed an education and training foundation degree at Newcastle College. I specialised in special educational needs (SEN) teaching and started agency work. I worked at several schools in Newcastle and Northumberland. After a couple of years I took a year off – I moved to New York and worked at Camp America for six months before travelling around the US for a few months.
“I then returned home and signed up for more agency work. However, work was hard to find and I was finding the hunt for work and the work itself very stressful and mentally and physically demanding. A friend was working at Nigel Frank International (a recruitment company) and I thought the work sounded interesting so applied, and got the job. It was a great place to start and the training was excellent.
“I went on to work with NRG and then the Ronald James Group, working in the digital and tech sector.
“I was made redundant from Ronald James, but on the same day I had a call from Lorna Madden, Head of Recruitment at Opencast. I’d been thinking for some time about working as an internal recruiter and the timing could not have been better, so I applied for the job – and got it!”
Is there a normal route into recruiting?
“It’s one of those careers which has all sorts of different entry points – although a lot of people have HR backgrounds.”
How have you found Opencast as an employer?
“I can honestly say I’ve never been happier. I feel valued, an equal and that my opinions count. I was very keen to study for my level 3 certificate in in-house recruitment, but couldn’t afford to do the qualification. Opencast paid for my training to take the certificate – and I passed! Opencast are on an exciting journey to become a much bigger company and I want to be part of that journey.”