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Hiring in lockdown: Here's what our new starters said

3 mins read

Like a lot of companies, we’ve been working from home during the pandemic. Even though the world came to a halt, here at Digital 22 we kept on working. This meant we carried on recruiting and expanding our team, all with the aim of supporting our clients.

Hiring from home has been very different and it’s something we’ll remember forever in the world of recruitment. Zoom interviews, virtual onboarding - everything has changed. Here’s what Mel, our Talent & Culture Manager, had to say about hiring during lockdown:

“Virtually recruiting has been nowhere near as good as being in the office and meeting people. Not being able to meet people face to face before making the decision has been hard.

"However, it has been good being able to give people who have been made redundant/challenging situations a new opportunity though. It has definitely been good to be able to hire some really good people nevertheless.”

So, with this challenge in mind, we wanted to make it as seamless as possible for our candidates. So here are the team members we hired virtually while also hearing what they had to say about the experience.

A strange career experience...

Sam is our newest Inbound Strategist and is responsible for account management, client communication and effective campaign strategy. Now, don't get Sam confused with our other Strategist, Sam.

He works alongside specialist teams to deliver fantastic results for many different businesses of all sizes and sectors. When he’s not creating compelling inbound marketing campaigns, you can probably find him strumming a tune on his guitar. He wanted me to let you know he’s no Hendrix, however.

samw right hired in lockdown

Sam managed to have a face to face interview before we went into lockdown. Although when his first week came around, we were working from home (great timing!). This is what Sam said about his onboarding experience:

“Probably one of the strangest career experiences I've had. However, everyone made a lot of effort to close the gap and make me feel welcomed even though we were remote. It felt fairly overwhelming at times and I was sick of the sight of Zoom at the end of some days.

"All in all, though, I think it was quite a positive experience and well organised, but you can't replicate going into the office and meeting people in person."

A seamless process

Dave is our brand spanking new Lead Web Designer, bringing some creative flair to our current arsenal. His focus lies within UX designing, helping to create user-friendly web experiences for our clients and their customers.

When he’s not creating fantastically intuitive web designs, he’s walking his dog Charlie and watching movies. Dave also has a stash of vintage Transformers from the 80s. When I say stash, I mean a whole glass case full.

dave digital 22 designer

Dave went through his whole recruitment process virtually. He was our guinea pig! He said: “Personally, I found it to be a pretty seamless process. Enjoyed the fact that we were welcomed by the different teams through Zoom calls and liked that fact that I got to know everyone before I actually met them in person.”

Dave's opinion on the matter just shows how differently people are taking it. Compared to Sam, his personal experience seems a bit more optimistic. Is virtual onboarding and interviewing the new way forward? Who knows?

An interesting onboarding experience

Matt joined us three months ago as our new Web Developer. Matt is a big fan of music so you’ll catch him with his headphones in listening to a few tunes or podcasts in his spare time. He also loves playing video games (he’ll fit in well then) and following eSports and cricket.

He loves craft beers and trying different flavours from all over the world. A spot of whitewater kayaking never goes amiss either. How does he find the time?

Like Dave, he also went through the whole process virtually. He said:

“Interviewing via Zoom was a bit weird, with not getting to physically meet anyone. Although it probably worked reasonably well for me, as it just meant I was interviewing at home with familiar surroundings and a general feeling of being comfortable.

matt web developer
“Onboarding was interesting too, being introduced to everyone via video chats meant I could remember who everyone was as if I’d forgotten I could just hover over their picture in Zoom to get their name again. It’s still quite weird that I haven’t met everyone in person though.

“The only negative I’ve found is that it feels a bit slower to get to know everyone outside of my own team. As the only people I’m regularly speaking are those inside of Design & Development.”

"I was never left wondering what to do"

Rebecca is the newest member of our close-knit content team. It’s her job to use her creative imagination to bring blogs and content pieces to life.

Rebeca is really into music, so when she isn’t writing, she’s becoming the next Picasso and learning the piano! She also really loves learning languages, so she’s been trying to reteach herself French after studying it at A-Level by revisiting her teenage years and reading an English to French translation of Stephenie Meyer's 'Twilight'.

Bilingual and a pianist?! I definitely need to up my game.

rebecca content marketer
Here’s what Rebecca has said about her recruitment process at Digital 22.

“My interview with Digital 22 was the first time I’d ever done one on Zoom, which was a little strange. However, the interview itself was very relaxed, so the strangeness quickly dissipated.

"When I got the job and started on my first day, everything I needed had already been provided, so I wasn’t left without any necessary equipment.

"The onboarding process was very smooth, as Digital 22 had already planned out my first week for me, so I was never left wondering what to do.”

After speaking to Sam, Dave, Matt and Rebecca, it really put into perspective how overwhelming it must have been starting a new career when the whole world seemed to be shutting down.

Looking for a new challenge? We're still recruiting

Not being able to meet people face to face, learning the ropes of the job via video call without that support in person - they’ve done so well! Here at Digital 22, we’ve been lucky enough to carry on and make our work family bigger and better, and for that, we're truly grateful.

As much as we’re looking forward to going back to normal, recruiting from home is something we’ll continue to do for the foreseeable.

Speaking of recruitment, if you’re looking for a new opportunity, don’t forget to have a look at our careers page for our latest available positions.