11 digital hires in 7 months with in-house recruitment
Meet the client
S Group is a customer-owned Finnish network of companies in the retail and service sectors, with more than 1,800 outlets in Finland. S Group consists of regional cooperatives and SOK (The Central Finnish Cooperative Society); among other operations the Group has its own travel and hospitality business subsidiaries in Estonia and Russia.
The S Group offers services in the retail supermarket trade, the department store and speciality store trade, service station and fuel trade, travel and hospitality business operations, and the hardware trade. In addition, some of the S Group cooperatives have regional car dealerships and agricultural outlets. The S Group provides all co-op members with comprehensive banking services through S-Bank.
Cooperatives are businesses operating in accordance with the principles of cooperative activities where customers are also owners (co-members).
Between September and April, Mira and Jesse successfully filled 11 different IT and digital roles at SOK.
“Mira and Jesse were both really committed to finding an ideal joint solution that would really work for both parties.”
Baseline: finding specialist IT talent
“After the summer of 2019, we recognized that our recruitment needs were going through a sharp increase, especially when it came to key talent segments in the IT sector” says Mari Junnila, HR Manager at SOK.
“Even though we have our own in-house recruiters, this was a mammoth task we needed help with. We were looking for a very specific type of expertise, something that is quite niche in a tech field like ours. At the time it wasn’t clear whether our recruitment needs would keep on growing, so turning to an external partner seemed like the ideal solution.”
Mari stresses that SOK’s own recruiters are experienced and talented at direct search, but that recruiting in the IT sector was a bit of an unknown. Their own recruitment team needed support from IT recruitment experts.
As they researched different recruitment partners, SOK landed on Finders Seekers. “We chose Finders Seekers because Finders Seekers is a fresh and highly-skilled IT recruitment partner in Finland.” says Mari.
Partnership: holistic recruitment strategy
Mira Günther and Jesse Helin from Finders Seekers were selected to strengthen SOK’s internal recruitment team, working as in-house consultants and becoming part of the SOK ‘family’. SOK were looking for a holistic approach to recruitment. Both Mira and Jesse worked at SOK 50% of their time, equaling one full-time member of SOK staff.
Mira and Jesse joined the team in September 2019 and the rest is history! “As soon as Ilona and Mari had inducted Mira and Jesse into SOK and our processes, they both just got going immediately: both of them were very self-directed and proactive from the start” Mari explains.
The management team at SOK particularly praised the partnership. “Mira and Jesse rose to the challenge and took on the demands of the job and successfully navigated the constantly shifting landscape. At SOK the pace is brutal, but they successfully kept up with it and they always did what was actually needed, not just what was ‘required’.” says Mari. “Their work did not need to be constantly checked or supervised: they did everything with professionalism and in an agile and flexible manner, acting as true partners. Our in-house recruiters definitely benefited from the partnership. Mira and Jesse kept the rest of the team informed about their work through frequent recruitment check-ins: their professionalism was impeccable. ”
Wrap up: working together brought fast results
“Mira and Jesse were both really committed to finding an ideal joint solution that would really work for both parties. Everything was done in a very customer-oriented way and their recruitment expertise really came to the fore – including their desire to develop their own (and our) knowledge. Also, Finders Seekers people don’t give up easily!”, laughs Mari.
Mari says that the new job advertisements written by Jesse were also a big hit with management. Jesse wrote the ad text in a fresh and insightful way that gave SOK plenty to think about; management was convinced by the new job ad style Finders Seekers suggested.
Mari said it was also really great that both Mira and Jesse actively brought forth their own views: asking, helping, challenging, and making suggestions on how to streamline internal recruitment processes. This collaboration was about so much more than just direct search and recruiting a few successful candidates: this was about genuine long-term business benefits.
Towards the end of the contract, we went through a compilation of Mira and Jesse’s most important observations and development ideas for the future. ”
“Between September and April, Mira and Jesse successfully filled 11 different IT and digital roles here at SOK.”
Would you recommend Finders Seekers?
“Yes. Finders Seekers is a modern and agile player with a solid focus on digital and IT recruitment. These people are super knowledgeable and have their hearts in the right place. They are committed to delivering the best possible joint solution.” says Mari.