Fasthosts were pressed for time and needed high quality, local tech talent

Paul Newton
Gloucester, UK
Company stage
Company size
201 - 500
Web hosting
CS Manager
Paul Newton
Paul Newton
Hired by
Role title
Fasthosts were pressed for time and needed high quality, local tech talent

Quality local talent

Challenge 1

Brand awareness & perception

Challenge 2

Talent Acquisition resource

Challenge 3

Fasthosts is a provider of Internet access and hosting services based in Gloucester. They came to Haystack as they weren’t seeing a return on investment on other hiring platforms, and traditional recruiters weren’t able to provide the quality of candidate that was needed. We spoke to Fasthosts Talent Partner Carys to find out how Haystack changed that… 

How has your experience of Haystack been so far?

I have to say, I was really impressed by it. I was introduced to Haystack by a member of The Talent Community, and the service I've had has been brilliant, I've had some really strong candidates. The people I’ve been speaking to at Haystack really knew their things, they understood how to adapt and they were willing to push back, which is exactly what I want when I'm working with someone.

What challenges were you facing in your tech hiring prior to launching on Haystack?

We have quite a broad tech stack here, and it's quite distributed, so it's the kind of job that suits certain developers and not others. We have a high standard for the people we hire which generally results in us having a high tenure within the department. We also operate a hybrid work pattern that requires on-site working in Gloucester, and as we all know, most developers do prefer to work from home. If we need them to come into the office, we obviously then have a smaller candidate pool to choose from, as we’re only looking at those who are able and willing to commute to the office on those days. To sum up, it’s finding those people who would, first of all, come into the office, and then could demonstrate the skills and the behaviours we'd be looking for. We're a very open team, we're very collaborative, and we're very innovative as well, so we need people who are willing to embrace that.

How has Haystack helped you with those challenges?

As I'm sure you're aware, when you advertise a job, it doesn't matter which country or city, or what working patterns there are, you will get inundated with applications from people who won’t work in the required location, or who don't have that skill. For me, it was very useful to have that checked, and to make sure that when they were coming over, they were fully aware of what the requirements were. 

I was a lot more secure in sending people over to managers. I will always speak to a candidate before it goes to the hiring manager, and for me, knowing I was able to spend more time on giving the candidates more information about who and what we do, and give them more insight into the benefits of working here rather than having to drill them on technical questions, helps to provide an overall better experience to that candidate as well, and candidate experience is critical.

Were you using other platforms for your tech hiring prior to launching on Haystack?

So, we obviously use LinkedIn - who doesn't these days? I've tried various different job boards over the years. I did try another hiring platform last year as well, which to be fair was good, but it was very expensive and unfortunately I didn't get that return on investment to justify continuing with the platform.

How did Haystack compare to those platforms?

I very much work with people - candidates are people, managers are people, our suppliers are people. I have to say, I really was impressed with the service that I got from the team at Haystack. I don't want to work with “yes” people - I want people who are willing to come back and say, ‘yeah, you're not going to get that’, or ‘come on, get moving, this is taking too long’. I want people to chase me, or to challenge me as this allows us to continually review our knowledge, and process to ensure we're hiring the right people. I was able to have very frank and very direct conversations with the team, and I was able to trust that went both ways.

How did your hiring process change after launching on Haystack?

To give you a bit of background, I'm the only person who does recruitment in the UK for my company, and I recruit across two different businesses - my current company, and the parent company - so anything to do with recruitment sits solely with me. That's everything from getting the jobs approved, sourcing, strategy, and everything in between!

For me, it was knowing that there was somebody who was willing to understand what we wanted from our people, and being able to receive candidates who are already vetted for our minimum requirements was a huge help and saved a lot of time.

Finally, what advice would you give to any recruiters currently struggling with their tech hiring?

My advice would definitely be to reach out to Haystack. If you’re a member of The Talent Community, I know there are membership discounts that you can access through that as well. Haystack is a different option. It's cost-effective, (which, given the market and challenges currently is a huge plus), it has the human touch, and saves so much time. They're an asset to the recruitment process.

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