Restart Scheme

Starling Bank supporting Serco Restart Scheme Participants into hybrid roles

12th May 2023 Restart Scheme

Starling Bank is not your typical bank. They are modern, forward thinking and fast-paced. They are customer focused and want to make managing money more accessible for people by having smart ways to budget and monitor spending. Starling welcomes thousands of new customers every day and their customer service team has had to keep growing to support them.

The connection with the Restart Scheme took place when Sarah Chapman, Talent Acquisition Specialist at Starling, attended a Careers Event in Newport in August 2022 and met Hannah Monaghan, Employer Engagement Coordinator for the Restart Scheme. At the event they discussed how the Starling recruitment process works and how the Restart Scheme could support this.

To date, the Restart Scheme has enabled 20 part- and full-time Customer Service and Customer Onboarding new starters at Starling. All the roles are hybrid; full-time colleagues (Starlings) spend a third of their time in the office, and evening part-time Starlings spend 1 day per month in the office, with the rest of the time working from home.

Sarah said: Our recruitment team is small, and we are really busy. Most applications we get are ‘organic’. However we get a better mix of candidates with different types of experience by using the Restart Scheme, including those who maybe wouldn’t have had the confidence to apply for the roles otherwise.

When we meet Participants from the Restart Scheme, we can see that they have been given support from being out of work and have all the right skills and the right attitude and want to come and work for us. They come to us informed, which is always helpful. The Restart Scheme gives them the confidence to get back into work and the candidates we have recruited have settled in well. The way the Restart Scheme works ties in well with our processes too. We work simultaneously doing similar things, and Hannah works her magic for these great candidates to appear. Hannah is wonderful! It’s been really good for us.”

When asked what advice she would give to other businesses who are thinking about using the Restart Scheme for their recruitment, Sarah said: “There is genuinely no downside to it. There’s no cost for us. Hannah has been adaptable and flexible to understand what our process is like, what we need and what works for us. And even when things have changed, we just keep adapting the process. You also have access to a strong pool of candidates. Hannah doesn’t put people forward that are not job ready. She is proactive and always checks if there are any changes with the recruitment process at Starling. Even when I’m super busy, Hannah is patient. She’s always really positive and she’s great to work with. If there’s anything we’re not sure about, we work together to resolve it. I would recommend the Restart Scheme to other businesses. The number of people that are put forward that we offer job roles to is really high”.

Hannah said: “We run a monthly Customer Services training session for Starling where we screen the candidates, based on their requirements. For those that pass, and before they go for an interview, Sarah will speak to them via Teams to ask if they have any questions about the role as well as giving hints and tips and being there as a point of contact. Their interview style is different as it’s conversational. They need to get to know the candidate as they are going to be on the phone and thinking on their feet, so they want to see this in action.

Sarah and I have catch-ups every month to discuss the start dates for the candidates, and to check how the people in-role are settling in. We have a good way of working and our process really works. Sarah is always there if I have a query on anything or want to provide feedback. We have regular contact to make sure we are doing things the right way, ensuring our screening process with Starling is aligned. I can’t fault the relationship that we have.

At the start, we discussed how full-time training might be a barrier to people applying for part-time roles. On the back of this, Starling has now introduced evening training for part-time roles, which has increased the amount of people who are interested in the roles. In fact, so much so, that they have now had to close the applications for this type of role!

We have had quite a few people giving really positive feedback about their journey at Starling and how working there has changed their lives. They are on a really good salary; they can prioritise a great work life balance and enjoy luxuries such as going on holiday. It shows that the processes we take and the onboarding that Starling provides can make a difference to peoples’ lives”.


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