Alexa Talent Bank helps organizations across the UK to attract and manage the very best talent
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Talent Bank helps organizations across the UK to attract and manage the very best talent

Talent Bank helps organizations across the UK to attract and manage the very best talent

When you’re looking to put workers in chairs, you might consider using a recruitment agency or service to get the job done. If you don’t have a dedicated recruiter, you’re pulling precious work time away from other staff members, time that affects your bottom line. A recruitment agency to get the right candidates (not just a pool of applicants) may be the way to go when you want to get the most bang for your buck. How do you know who is best for you? We know who, it’s Talent Bank.

Talent Bank from Keystone offers a comprehensive suite of online tools for hiring and managing casual workers. Talented employees can be hired in seconds with all compliance, timesheets and payroll facilities in one place, it’s never been easier to manage your temporary workforce.

We had a talk with Malcolm Paice, Managing Director, to get a clear picture of the firm

Q. What inspired you to establish Talent Bank? How did Talent Bank fill the void?

Well, the original Keystone business was a traditional recruitment company and had several branches and acted as an employment agency for temporary staff, in the main. At the start of the new millennium there was a bit of a bubble with tech recruitment and after that the entire nature of recruitment changed as online solutions started to emerge. By 2010, Keystone knew it had to change its traditional model or watch as others did so - disrupt or be disrupted. We chose the former and built our own solution, then called DirectTemping, to make the whole process of managing contingent workers faster, more automated, more secure and lower cost. In doing that we created a superb platform not just for our own business, but for every organization to take direct control and cut agencies out of the equation altogether. Now, that solution is Talent Bank and we are enabling organizations to essentially create their own in-house recruitment service.

Q. How does Talent Bank ease recruiting process by pulling in the right candidates at the right time?

The beauty of Talent Bank is that it exactly as the name suggests- a bank of talent. We create the online platform that allows candidates to add themselves to the pool and managers to add workers they have used before and also to push external job applications into the bank of workers. This means there is a ready supply, or pool, of talent, divided intelligently into groups of skills or types of worker, that an organization can draw upon 24x7x365.

“Keystone Talent Bank is a proud No 1 Ranked Supplier of Talent Bank solutions for  Procurement For Housing (PfH)."

Q. Since Talent Bank is hosted in cloud, how do you assure data safety for your customers?

In 2019 we went through the process of attaining ISO27001 information security certification. For many tech firms, especially smaller ones starting out, that can be daunting, and for larger firms actually reaching the standard can be tough as their legacy business and infrastructure may not represent best practice today. For us, as a very agile company, using hosting services like the proven AWS, meant we were in a position to work our way through ISO27001 certification quite methodically and achieve that important assurance of security for our customers. In the same year we also underwent Cyber Essentials certification, a recognized standard in the UK and of course we made sure we stayed in line with the GDPR rules ushered in a year earlier.

Q. Why should your customers choose Talent Bank over its competitors?

It may sound a little trite, but it is true to say Keystone do not have any truly direct competitors as we are yet to find another solution so developed in the entire process flow of hiring and managing workers. There are some other solutions out there, good solutions in fact, for the recruitment part, but they may not have the same tools for compliance, work assignment, timesheets etc. We are always expanding our feature set, just recently we added a new booking scheduler, to help managers who need to schedule large numbers of workers. That’s something else we are yet to see bundled with all the other functions, and because we are always adding this sort of rich functionality we can honestly say there is no direct like-for-like comparison in the market.

Q. In what way are students benefitted from Talent Bank?

To put it simply we make it easy for them to find work that fits around their studies. Students want and need work experience and Talent Bank matches them perfectly to roles available during their academic life- most of the time on the very campus where they are studying. That improves the school’s employability outcomes, and massively boosts the student’s work experience - not to mention help to fund their studies.

Q. How is Talent Bank an asset to universities, Procurement for housing and public sector?

Well, we see different needs in different sectors, but some are common across every sector we work in, namely; making recruitment of workers faster, lower cost and more assured in terms of compliance and pay accuracy. Any solution that can save an organization time, effort and money is always an asset.

Q. How do you improve staff retention?

Retention of talent rises massively when firms use Talent Bank, and churn is reduced. This is because workers can see upcoming work assignments and managers can offer work assignments ahead of time so they secure the talent they want and the worker gets certainty of what’s coming next. For temporary workers this is vital, as all too often agencies will simply bounce them from one role to another to suit the agency, rather than the worker. For too long contingent workers have been treated like a commodity and agencies sell them to the highest bidder, but often this means churn, lower retention and thus loss of skills and experience over the longer term. Talent Bank allows workers and employers to link work assignments together in a more resourceful manner and the happy end result is improved staff retention.

Share your experience of taking up challenges and overcoming them in a valiant manner.

I don’t know if I’d call it valiant! But without a doubt the pandemic during 2020-2021 was, of course the most challenging time for all of us. What was so remarkable for Keystone was how normally we were able to operate our business. Ultimately our model: frictionless, cloud based and not dependent on physical location all suited the circumstances of lengthy lockdowns, and if you ask any of our customers they will testify it really was business as usual from us. It was still enormously challenging. Working from home was not such a big shift for our team, but of course some of our staff caught COVID, people lost loved ones, and the day to day operation for many of our customers was changed dramatically. The mental and physical toll for most of us was tough at times. We actually attached new customers during it all, which is amazing really. I don’t know if we overcame it all in a valiant manner, but for sure our team made us proud and kept our business well on track.

Malcolm Paice, Managing Director

“Talent Bank takes the whitelabel approach, meaning your branding, your requirements, your values are upheld through a powerful online recruitment and management solution for your casual workforce.”

“Save time and money with a slick online service that can integrate directly with your payroll and finance systems, or, if you need it, Talent Bank can take care of the payroll in its entirety.”


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