Test and train: meeting Covid demands with high-quality hiring for Pupil Progress

Pupil Progress

Introduction: Covid in the classroom…

Where some businesses have had to scale down their operations to survive Covid-19, Pupil Progress have had to do the opposite. The demand for digital teaching solutions has never been greater, and Pupil Progress’ software is meeting the needs of thousands of teachers across the country.

The two-man band could not handle this alone. To meet the surge in demand the Brighton-based startup had to rapidly expand, but they did not have to look far to solve their recruitment problems. They approached DigitalGrads, local recruitment experts, to quickly find all-star candidates in the area.

The Challenge: when Covid comes knocking…

If there’s one business lesson we’ve all learned this year, it’s that adaptability is essential for survival. This is especially vital in recruitment as the needs of your business are constantly changing.

Pupil Progress approached DigitalGrads looking to make two hires: one Product Development and Technical Services Officer and one Marketing Intern. But as the team got to work polishing advertisements, sourcing candidates and creating shortlists, the team at Pupil Progress realised that their needs had changed.

Pupil Progress

While they initially wanted to find a talented intern to improve their marketing efforts, they quickly realised that their growing company needed some pre-grown talent. They needed a savvy marketer with a few years of experience to step in and make big changes.

The internship role was unrealistic so they reassessed their needs, went back to the drawing board and returned with a new Marketing Executive role. But our difficulties were not over.

Finding talented candidates that were prepared to leave the safety of a stable job and move into a new position was a difficult task. Covid-19 had breathed fresh uncertainty into the job market, and few were prepared to take a risk.

Our recruiters decided to go with our classic approach: quality over quantity. After a few days of hard work we presented three all-star, talented marketers and moved them onto the next stage: the task.

But Pupil Progress’ team was made up of two ex-teachers, so how could they develop a task to accurately assess the skills of each marketer?

Our approach: using our expertise…

Meanwhile, our recruiters were curating a solid shortlist of juniors with analytical brains for the Product Development and Technical Services Officer role.

“This role was familiar to us, so I used my usual talent scouting methods to find the right candidates. It was very popular on our platform, but we were looking for a specific type of person: someone comfortable with data.” – Kristina, DG Recruiter

Kristina sifted through applications by putting each candidate to the test. She encouraged them to take our Tech Industry Training and helped them create stunning profiles.

The candidates completed a technical task and two-tier interview process before finding out whether they had secured their dream job.

While Kristina was working on the Product Development role, our founder and CEO Lucy Smith stepped in to help Pupil Progress find a talented marketer. Having worked in marketing for 20 years prior to founding DigitalGrads, Lucy knew that her skills were the missing link.

She stepped into an advisory role, designing a challenging application task and guiding any big decisions with her industry expertise.

“There was power in our professional relationship that enabled it to work. They had to trust us with more than sourcing amazing candidates: the whole process was Lucy’s design.” – Kristina, DG Recruiter

Our three all-star candidates stepped up to the plate, designing comprehensive marketing strategies to meet a set of strict criteria.

Conclusion: when duty calls…

The three candidates presented their marketing strategies at an in-person interview in Brighton. Lucy sat next to Pupil Progress founder Brett Griffin, asking questions and testing whether they had the technical ability to work for the company.

In the end, the team absolutely blew it out of the water. Pupil Progress’ team were so impressed with Kristina’s shortlist that they hired three candidates from the Product Development and Technical Services Officer shortlist.

Soon after they also decided to hire an extremely talented Marketing Executive and return again only a month later to hire another senior position, this time a Customer Success Manager.

Pupil Progress

Thanks to our amazing candidates and resilient recruiters, Pupil Progress’ team is now five people stronger. It is better adapted to face the coming demands of the second lockdown and continue to grow. We can’t wait to continue helping them reach new heights.

And we’re proud to know that our five grads are out there making a real difference in the lives of teachers across the country.

About post author

Hi, I'm Daisy. I'm using my passion for writing to work with DigitalGrads on their content and social media campaigns.
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