Business case studies

Case Study: Joining Arnold Clark with virtual recruitment and hybrid onboarding

Working mum Louise Stewart, 25, started her new role as a People Advisor with Arnold Clark in Hillington in July 2021. She was recruited virtually, and experienced a blend of online and in-person elements for onboarding. Here, she describes the pros and cons of her experience.

What was it like going through the recruitment process and interview virtually?

I had never experienced a virtual interview before, but because I had been using Teams in my previous role throughout lockdown, I felt comfortable talking to people in this way. Although having my partner and little boy at home while I was doing the interview was a bit strange. Thankfully it was nap time for my son, so we made it through the interview without any interruptions. One positive was that I didn’t have the stress of traveling to a new office/location to find the place for the interview, worrying about time and traffic etc, so that helped me feel a bit more comfortable.

Induction

It was great doing all the paperwork in advance including for my company car, so it was here ready for me on my first day and was a lovely perk.

I was the office everyday as part of my onboarding process which was great because I could buddy with colleagues and learn from what they were doing, attend meetings and generally get to know people. The longer term plan is to have a hybrid arrangement, working at home and in the office.

Working at home can be really helpful because when you finish for the day, you are already home and can switch into family mode right away. For me, that’s a real plus.

Onboarding

I buddied with different people in the team to get a sense of their roles and had a tour on the first day to meet other departments and get a sense of what they do. I loved being able to do that as it’s nice when you meet people for the first time to be able to do that in person. Teams is great for meetings and keeping teams connected when you have people at home and on site, but I think face-to-face has been good while I’m getting to know the job.

I actually feel the induction process has probably been better because everything has been so well organised. All of the admin stuff was taken care of well in advance and because I’ve been buddying with different people, and it’s all planned via a shared calendar, I feel like I’ve had more attention.

I was also able to go for a coffee, or get lunch, with new colleagues, getting a chance to chat and get to know them, which has been really nice and much more social than what we have had during lockdown.

Now that I’ve experienced both, I would say having a mix of time working in the office and some time working at home is the ideal situation for the future because it’s the best of both worlds.

Anything you would change, would like more of given the option?

For the interview, I think I would have felt more comfortable coming to an office and doing that face-to-face. While I was comfortable with the technology and speaking to my interviewers on Teams, I was also at home with my partner and my little boy was having a nap, so there were distractions that made it feel less formal.

You can read people better when you are in the room, and get a better sense of how they are responding to you too.

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