Josh Moreland looks back on his time with Hamilton Forth to date, reliving the experience of joining the business in lockdown, virtual socialising, building a new brand, and what it means to find a team that reflects your ambition, vision, and values.
It has been around 14 months since I joined Hamilton Forth and as I look back over my short time here, I’ve made some observations about moving to this business and, more generally, the nuances of making a career change in the midst of a global pandemic, macro-economic volatility and the emergence of full remote working.
Fortunately, I have very positive thoughts on my experience.
Hamilton Forth is the digital change and transformation arm of the wider Livingston James Group. Our business is underpinned by driving operational excellence in the tech field – but also making a difference to our clients, candidates, colleagues, and communities. This was a major attraction to me in joining the organisation.
Our business is spearheaded by some of the most reverential and inspirational business leaders I have ever come across. Many of the outfit have ‘served our time’ in environments steered by KPIs, phone targets, exhaustive outputs and a culture of fear and belittling. I’m glad to say that the environment I work in now is far from that. We support, we learn together, we make meaningful differences to clients, customers, charitable organisations, and communities that we serve and supply to. It also helps that a number of us could be described as like-minded individuals who enjoy the social side of our work too!
When I made the move to Hamilton Forth, it was right in the middle of the Covid-19 pandemic. To add to the complexities of this, I was actually undertaking a house move too and had just bought a kitten! People often say that moving job or moving home are some of the most stress-inducing things you can do – well, I guess I decided to double-down on that.
My move was made fairly seamless. I was provided with amazing support with all my equipment, training files, system inductions etc were carefully planned out and administered by an incredible operations team and by my fellow consultants.
Building the Brand
The first few months were, of course, tough. We are in the process of brand-building, supporting a growing client-base and trying to catch up with a larger sister business which has been a market leader in the accountancy and finance field for over a decade.
We have been blessed to work with some of the most recognisable clients in the Scottish and UK market – but equally the client portfolio just one year on from my joining includes start-ups, SMEs, charities, universities, software houses, cloud consultancies, shipping organisations, FMCGs, robotics businesses, private equity firms, and banking and finance clients. By sticking to the principles and behaviours that I have honed over 13 years of recruitment experience, I have managed to successfully bring value-seeking clients to our business, many of which have tremendous growth plans for 2022 and onwards. The chance to continue supporting them is something for which I am extremely grateful.
Socialising and CSR
As a man who enjoys a quiz and a drink – I was strangely in a major comfort zone when it came to the virtual social side of things. At Hamilton Forth and Livingston James Group we openly endorse the promotion of activities that will benefit everyone’s mental health as well as allowing people a bit of fun after a stressful week. We have taken part in virtual quizzes, escape rooms, cocktail making classes – all sorts of engaging and collaborative activities which pulls people together and reinforces one of our core values that ‘together, we achieve more’.
I’m proud to say that I am also now at a stage in my life where I try to look beyond my own dreams and desires. Yes, I want to progress, make money, and achieve certain personal milestones – but I place huge value on people and businesses who ‘do the right thing’. At Hamilton Forth, we try to make sure we don’t fall short of this.
I actively participate in charity events, I have volunteered with various organisations – some tiny and some more mature – and I sit on two steering committees now in an advisory position to provide thought-leadership to a selected demographic.
Reflecting on Year One
To summarise how I see the last year or so, I would focus on three main areas when it comes to assessing my expectations vs reality:
Virtual Onboarding – I’m fairly pragmatic – so having to complete onboarding, training and all house-keeping items via video-conference and working at home (rather than face to face) doesn’t really phase me. What I am pleased to say is that the support offered across all personnel in the business made this very easy to feel comfortable straight away.
Matching Values and Expectations – Joining a business that you hope, matches your values and expectations. I was always confident that this would not be an issue. I knew the CEO of the business and I could tell from the moment I sat on the first conference call that the quality of talent within the organisation was outstanding. I’m also delighted that the duties out with recruitment activities are ones that I am proud to put my name against.
Get Out What You Put In – At Hamilton Forth we are at a size where we do feel like a big family. It is a bit of a cliché, however, the more that you put into your duties and your behaviours, the more you will see in return. I have had this mantra ever since I joined the business and so far, it seems to have served me well.
Hamilton Forth is growing. We are looking to add people to our team at all levels – so for anyone interested in speaking with me about my experiences, or anyone interested in learning more about the organisation in general – please don’t hesitate to get in touch at [email protected]