Elsevier is in a multi-year programme to bring new technologists to their organisation that will allow them to develop new products and offerings for their customers, utilising cutting-edge technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Big Data & Analytics and Cloud Computing. At their heart, Elsevier builds digital solutions designed to empower knowledge, which empowers those who use it. And it’s critical they find best-in-class talent that will enable them to build these solutions. We spoke to Alastair, Talent Acquisition Manager at Elsevier to see how they do it.

What were the main problems you were facing in tech recruitment in general before using hackajob?

Before using hackajob, I was sourcing candidates myself, which I didn’t mind, but the problem was this wasn’t beneficial from a time perspective. We tried to use other technical recruitment platforms, but to use them effectively, it would be a manual process that ended up being time-consuming. This was due to the amount of interaction needed at every touchpoint from finding candidates, to reaching out to them and then requesting phone interviews. The time between all these processes would make the overall time to hire too long for our needs.

The other issue was the cost when you think about all the channels used to directly source candidates such as job boards, other technical recruitment platforms and agencies, it all adds up, especially when you use several agencies as we have relied on traditionally. Therefore, we knew we needed one main tech recruitment platform that could deliver hires across our business at scale.

Why did you choose and decide to use hackajob over some other options that were available to you at the time and how do we differ from other options you might have used in the past?

We were using hackajob to complement other options we were using and quickly realised it would be able to deliver high-quality candidates at scale. The platform was able to match our rapid demand for growth and hiring with a consistent pipeline of verified candidates. At the current rate of hiring, which is 3 to 4 successful hires a month, we’re on track to make significant cost savings. We’ve passed the halfway mark for 2018 and we’ve already hired 20 candidates across Software Engineering, DevOps, Frontend, Data and QA!

By using hackajob, have you managed to reduce the cost of using traditional channels?

As a result of using hackajob, we’re phasing out the use of recruitment agencies which is a massive cost reduction of around £150,000, so in short, yes! We’re now at a point where hackajob accounts for around 25% of tech hires made. This has also had an impact on the resources we allocate, for example, the recruitment team can focus on other roles, which also saves cost further down the line.

If you had to pick the best feature on hackajob for your workflow, what would it be and why?

The fact that we receive a consistent pipeline of quality candidates which slots into our workflow seamlessly and we have the support of an Account Manager has been a great asset. But, I’d say that hackajob profiles are by far the best feature, as the amount of information on them, from the candidate’s strengths they’ve highlighted on hackajob, to their work experience presented clearly, makes it so much more valuable in comparison to just a CV.

How would you summarise your experience of working with hackajob?
I’ve used hackajob for the last 12 months and found they consistently provide a high-quality pipeline of engineers. Compared to other online platforms we’ve used, their candidate quality and willingness to integrate into our workflows has allowed us to scale our hiring to 3/4 hires per month, saving us more than £150k on agency fees in the process.

hackajob will continue to be my partner of choice for finding great Software and DevOps Engineering talent moving forwards and I’m excited to continue the partnership we’ve built.


Elsevier has had some fantastic results while using hackajob, below are just some of the best ones:

  • 20 hires in last 7 months
  • £150k saved on agency fees
  • 74% of matches progressed to interview
  • 50% of F2F Interviews progressed to offer
  • 70% offer acceptance rate

If you want to find out more about hackajob and discover how we can help you reduce your cost per hire, click here to get in touch with our sales team.

Article by Hammad Mirza