Our resident Scot and Contracts Manager, Scott Johnston came a long way before joining us. After relocating to Pontypridd to study Forensic Science at the University of South Wales, something he puts down to watching one-too-many CSI episodes, over the next decade it became clear where his talents lay.
Taking a brief detour from recruitment into training, it was the time away from home that signalled to Scott that it was time to return to helping others find work.
Knowing the relationship between clients and candidates inside out, it was a natural fit for Scott to join the Work Wales team. Having previously worked in social care, he was all too aware of the challenges faced by recruitment in a post-pandemic world. As the stars aligned, he saw potential in consolidating his experience by joining Work Wales.
So, tell us a bit about how you came to be at Work Wales…
I left recruitment to try something a bit different. I started a training job, which I enjoyed, but I didn't enjoy the travel. I was here, there, everywhere.
When I applied for university, there was so much talk about career opportunities in Forensic Science. But during my second year, the credit crunch hit and the government cut the service. As a result, not many of us from our course, at least that I'm aware of, ended up using our degree; except a few of the guys who went into lab-based roles.
I worked in recruitment for both education and social care for nearly 10 years, so coming back to it felt right.
What’s an average day like as a Contracts Manager?
Usually, I start the morning just checking everything's OK from the night before. Most of our candidates start on a Sunday, sometimes as early as 6 am. So, picking up on anything that might have come in before I’ve arrived at work is how my day begins.
Then I begin sorting through applications that come in. That’s usually my priority for the morning; just checking that I have everything I need before I start contacting candidates.
Other than that, I’m on-site inducting new candidates and getting them started in their new roles.
You said your week starts on Tuesday?
Yeah, recovery Mondays add an extra day to my weekend. I love it, but I don’t know if my liver does!
The four-day work week gets no complaints from me. It’s nice going to the pub on a Sunday! It’s handy having our days off staggered so that there’s always someone who can pick up any calls that come in. It’s quite different to how I’ve worked before - it’s much more of a family feel.
In previous jobs when you had a Bank Holiday Monday or Friday, everything carried on as normal, so I’m not surprised this works.
I do a handover for Alex on a Friday and she’s in the office on Monday. I’m not sure I even need to, to be honest. She knows what you're thinking before you do.
Besides the three-day weekend, what are your favourite parts of the job?
The relaxed atmosphere and the freedom that goes with it. Being trusted to get on do your job makes coming to work so much more enjoyable. It’s a really supportive workplace, you can ask anyone about anything and they’re ready to pitch in and help you out.
Also – coming out of the other end of rolling lockdowns, it’s nice not working from my one-bedroom flat. Sharing a tiny desk with my partner and not leaving the house all day was not ideal, so it’s nice to see outside of those four walls and be back in the real world!
What’s an average weekend like for you?
Besides the pub?
I’m joking – mostly. It’s nice not having to cram everything into Saturday and Sunday. I feel like I can actually get on top of all the boring life stuff. That, and I’ve got a little dog to walk!