From Customer Service to Recruitment: what it's like to change departments
Liam joined our Customer Service team over three years ago. From his first days with Customer Service, he worked closely with Recruitment. After months of interviewing candidates, he discovered a passion for talent acquisition. In today’s post, he shares first-hand why he wanted to join the Recruitment team, how he felt about changing departments, and what he took away from the process.
I joined GetYourGuide in December 2015 as a Team Lead in Customer Service before becoming the Workforce Manager for the department. When I first joined, we were deep into recruiting a new class of Customer Service Representatives. So, from my first moments working in Customer Service, I was also introduced to the Recruitment team.
In fact, within my first week at GetYourGuide, I was already interviewing candidates on the phone. Throughout 2016 and early 2017, I was very involved in phone screens and face-to-face interviews. We had an ambitious hiring plan, so this became a daily task.
As we continued to hire Customer Service Representatives during 2017, my tasks as a Workforce Manager grew more complex. This meant I had to drop my involvement in recruiting and dedicate all of my time to my core tasks. I soon realized I missed talking to candidates, trying to understand their motivation, and assessing if they would be a good fit and asset to the company.
It was around this time, I started toying with the idea of applying to join the Recruitment team.
I consider myself an outgoing and social person; I enjoy talking to people and learning about their background and experiences. While I enjoyed being Workforce Manager, much of the role involved working independently on my computer. Recruitment, therefore, felt like a more natural fit. I also felt like recruiting would give me a great opportunity to have an even more visible impact on the growth of the company. Hiring people who have the right skills and fit the ethos and philosophy of GetYourGuide meant I could have a bigger hand in shaping the company as it scaled.
Once I got the idea in my head, my next step was to do a bit of research. Although I’d been exposed to recruiting, it was important I had a more thorough understanding of the role and its challenges before I took the leap. Since I’d worked closely with the Recruitment team for a couple of years, I had a pretty good grasp of the work, but I reached out to members of the team to get the full picture.
I also spoke directly with my line manager, Dirk, who was very supportive and encouraged me to do further research. Finally, I spoke with my fellow Workforce Manager, Anna, and our Head of People Partner, Franzi. It was useful to get their insights and advice when considering applying for this new position.
After this research, I sent in my application and began the recruiting process.
The Recruiting Process
The recruiting process itself was smooth, efficient, and, most importantly, enjoyable. That being said, of course it had its challenges! I was kept informed about my progress, and the Recruitment Coordinators were helpful and available when I had questions.
While I know applying for a job can be stressful, I felt lucky. I already had a job I loved at a great company. I had nothing to lose. So, no matter the outcome, I knew it would be a good learning experience.
After a few days, I got a call from Maren, the Business Recruiting Team Lead, asking to meet and go over some feedback. Weirdly enough, I was more nervous about this than the interview itself. Maren first gave me some really useful feedback on how I’d done throughout the process. Then, she told me I’d been successful with my application and offered me the position.
After the talk, I was buzzing! (ed: Manchester word for “extremely happy!”) I was so happy to join a new team and start this new challenge. Of course, after three years, I knew I would miss working with my colleagues in Customer Service, but reminded myself I would still work with them often, just in a new capacity.
A couple weeks into the role, the biggest challenge so far has been adapting to a very different typical work day. In my previous role, I didn’t have as much in-person contact with people compared to my new role. This is what attracted me to the role in the first place, but it will take some getting used to.
The support from my new team has been the best part of this transition. They quick made me feel comfortable. I received so many congratulations and welcomes from the Recruitment Team and the People Team as a whole; I felt a part of things from the very start. This is a good chance for me to say thank you to them for all the support and help I’ve received so far; I really appreciate it!
Going forward, there’s so much to be excited about in 2019 and beyond. We have an extremely ambitious hiring plan with demanding OKRs, and I’m looking forward to achieving them, so we can drive GetYourGuide’s growth over the coming years.
On a more personal level, I’m really looking forward to the move to Ampere. The building is fantastic, and it’ll be the first time since I joined GetYourGuide that everyone in Berlin will be in the same place.
Overall my decision to leave Customer Service for the Recruitment team has been a really positive experience, from talking to the team before applying to my recent onboarding. I would advise anyone thinking about changing departments to approach it with a positive mindset and consider the reasoning and motivation behind the desire to apply. Then, put in the extra effort of researching the role and department. My research didn’t just help me during the recruiting process, but has also come in handy during my first weeks on the team.