Recruitment and Hiring

Introducing our Placement Team - Cole Walton

Cole Walton headshotPreview: Cole Walton headshot

Meet Cole, a Lead Placement Consultant at Northcoders, sharing insights into his role, helping businesses find tech talent, and challenges in hiring.

Introduce yourself

My name is Cole and I’m one of the Lead Placement Consultants. 

How long have you worked for Northcoders?

I’ve been working at Northcoders for coming up to three years – how time flies! As our CEO, Chris now says, I’m “part of the furniture”- I wouldn’t change it for the world!

What does your job role entail? 

My job is as diverse as our team! Some days I’ll be out and about meeting and getting to know businesses across England, so I’m able to understand their needs and how we can find a solution. Other days I like to spend time getting to know our Northcoders, so I can make sure that I can find the perfect role for them as individuals. You’ll also find me knee deep in data, spreadsheets and assisting in internal projects so we can continue to make our services even better! I also get to mentor incoming team members, build their confidence and give them all the tools they need to be successful at Northcoders.

What did you do before your role at Northcoders?

Before Northcoders, I primarily worked in Education, both private and public sector. I used to run the careers team at a local college, alongside student recruitment and work experience (it was a job with many hats)! After that, I moved over to managing a tuition centre, where we helped children from all backgrounds have the opportunity to improve not only their attitude towards learning but also help them achieve their goals. I still consider myself to be a bit of a fearless learner – which was our goal for all the children we used to tutor – it’s definitely an experience I’ll always have with me. 

Why do you enjoy working in tech?

I’ve always been a bit of a technology nerd. I constantly follow what’s up and coming and what new pieces of software are coming out. But what I love most is the people. Everyone is so unique and keen to make tech the best sector it possibly can be. Majority, if not everyone have the goal to make accessing tech careers more accessible and to build a more diverse workforce. No two days are the same in tech and that’s what keeps me excited and on my toes. There’s endless opportunities! 

Cole Walton at BBC Bitesize eventPreview: Cole Walton at BBC Bitesize event

Cole on the panel at a BBC Bitesize Event

How can you and the wider team at Northcoders help businesses find the right tech talent?

It’s amazing that there are so many more opportunities for people from all backgrounds to get into tech. We’re finding that businesses who post their roles on jobs board are being inundated with candidates – which is great, it shows how much the industry is growing however, it can be quite a daunting task for the hiring team. That’s where we step in. We will matchmake our Northcoders with businesses based on their passions, what type of companies they want to work for, their career goals – the list goes on. 

We’re in a unique position where we can get to know our candidates as individuals so we can put forward the best people for the role. The best part, the company will be assigned one of our incredible placement team who will continue to look after them throughout the years – I’m still managing client relationships from when I started over three years ago and it makes it such a great partnership because you get to know the businesses inside out, which is what I think a lot of businesses need. We’re here to build a long lasting relationship where we can assist in getting rid of some of that noise for the hiring managers. 

What do you think the biggest challenge for hiring in tech is at the moment?

I believe there is still a stigma surrounding people who have not gone through the linear University route (whether that be a STEM degree or any degree for that matter). There are so many more accessible ways of getting in tech now that gives you more hands-on experience whether that be a bootcamp or through an apprenticeship. It shouldn’t matter which route you’ve taken, if you’re passionate and willing to learn something new every day then that should be a higher priority than any formal training. My role is to help break down these barriers to show employers how incredible our Northcoders are, despite coming the non-linear way into tech. 

A fun fact about you

My partner and I met 10 years ago in an audition room for a musical! We both got cast, he played the leading man and I ended up playing his son (I’m a year older than he is)! In the same musical, I also played 8 other characters and had over 30 quick changes! 

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