Stuart Gentle Publisher at Onrec

Online recruitment platform, Hiring Hub makes key hires to drive growth

Belford & Brown - Hiring-Hub

Innovative recruitment platform’s headcount swells with key hires as momentum gathers

Hiring Hub, the online marketplace that helps companies find talent faster through a trusted network of specialist, independent recruitment agencies, has recently appointed Commercial Director, Alex Belford, and Head of Sales, Darren Brown. Belford joins Hiring Hub from Rethink Group, a staffing and recruitment firm headquartered in London, while Brown flew in from Melbourne, Australia, to lead Hiring Hub’s sales effort.

The appointments were part of a six-month recruitment drive at the award-winning Northern Quarter company, which has seen headcount rise 150% during the period as it invests across the business to fuel and support growth following a £1.4m round of investment led by Maven Capital Partners, on behalf of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund, in September 2017.

In his last role, Belford helped create the Manchester-based coding school, Code Nation, a Rethink Group initiative to address the ever-widening IT skills gap. His appointment at Hiring Hub crystalises the firm’s commitment to champion the UK’s 12,000 small, specialist independent recruitment agencies that it believes deliver a better service than the large, global recruitment brands.

Brown, meanwhile, was headhunted from Australia where, for more than a decade, he carved a reputation for helping investment-backed scale-up companies build and lead direct sales teams. His experience spans both SaaS and marketplace businesses, which is what led Hiring Hub – an online marketplace that generates its revenue from subscriptions – to invite him to establish its sales division.

Hiring Hub’s founder and CEO, Simon Swan, said: “Darren and Alex bring experience and expertise to Hiring Hub, and will help drive a performance culture. It’s exciting to be able to bring people of their calibre into the business, and it’s further proof of the exciting opportunity we have at Hiring Hub to challenge the status quo within a large, established market that, frankly, has been starved of innovation and progress for decades.

“Alex and Darren share Hiring Hub’s vision of democratising the recruitment agency market by championing small, independent recruiters,” continued Swan. “For too long the big brands have dominated, but delivered a rigid, slow, commoditised service that has led to recruiters being viewed as a necessary evil rather than valued business partners with deep sector and commercial knowledge.

“We’ve seen a dramatic increase in the number of independent, specialist recruitment agencies start up in recent years; from 3000 in 2010 to over 12,000 today. These small businesses know their niche and have the ear of great candidates but, more importantly, they care about delivering a high quality, attentive service to clients. It just matters more to them. Our goal is to unite them on one, meritocratic platform and make it easy for employers to find and work with them. The result is employers fill jobs faster and with less hassle, while independent recruiters increase their client base and income.”

Used by over 500 companies in the UK, including local success stories like BASF, Sykes Cottages, Music Magpie and B&M Retail, Hiring Hub simplifies the process of working with recruiters. Employers post their jobs onto the marketplace, and for transparency set a fee upfront to incentivise recruitment agencies to submit their best candidates, only paying that fee if they hire. Employers can manage their recruitment  activity on the platform, streamlinstreamlining what can be a admin-heavy process.

The innovative yet simple model, which is proven to help companies fill technical, white collar jobs in an average of just 20 days, is driving 30% month-on-month growth at Hiring Hub following investment in 2017. Belford and Brown come in to support further growth and strengthen what was already a formidable team, which includes ex-Virgin Brand and Marketing Director James Kydd, CTO Anna Dick, who led teams at Moneysupermarket, On The Beach, the BBC and Co-op, and interim CFO Pete Wade, formerly of eBay and Paypal.