employee stories

Life as a Talent Acquisition Partner

Rochelle Dennis talks about her role and the strides the team are taking to bring about active change for underrepresented groups

Rochelle Dennis

Talent Acquisition PartnerLondon, UK

There is never a dull moment in our Talent team at Fishawack Health. We spoke to Rochelle Dennis, Talent Acquisition Partner, to learn about her role and the strides the team are taking to bring about active change for underrepresented groups.

She guides us through the team’s efforts in this space, and explains how they are staying agile and adaptable throughout COVID19, maintaining quality and level of support throughout, and going above and beyond to provide all employees with the right tools to stay resilient and thrive despite the situation.

What’s a typical day like?

My job involves supporting the talent acquisition strategy and managing the end-to-end recruitment process on assigned roles. This means building and maintaining relationships with all employees, project leads, and external clients is an important part of my role. I also work across various ad-hoc people-related projects and I represent the organisation at university career symposiums.

No two days are the same. A typical day can often involve juggling many planned tasks and unanticipated challenges. Although it varies from day to day, my responsibilities can be broken down into three key sections – diversity and inclusion, recruitment, and employee engagement and wellbeing.

Why Fishawack Health?

I was eager to join a field where I could utilise the skills and knowledge learnt from my psychology degree. Talent acquisition fitted this perfectly because you’re establishing rapport and delving into a candidate’s personality, personal values, motivational drives and cognitive abilities to align them to suitable opportunities. I also wanted to work in a people-oriented and proactive role, where I could focus on the candidate experience and deliver end-to-end solutions, all whilst making a lasting impact within a brand I was passionate about.

I have an exciting role in the future of the business by contributing to the development of a truly inclusive recruitment process.”

How do you find new talent?

I work on the end-to-end recruitment process. It’s all about connecting with the market and expanding my network to attract talented candidates for immediate opportunities. For example, talent pipelining and social promotion through delivering content on LinkedIn. I also conduct phone screenings and organise interviews.

How are you ensuring Fishawack Health is a diverse and inclusive company?

Although diversity and inclusion (D&I) is perceived to sit within HR, to properly embed diversity and inclusivity within the organisation, everyone needs to participate and own that responsibility together.

I’m in an invaluable position as a Black woman working within talent acquisition. I’m passionate about being an effective change agent and bringing attention to the barriers underrepresented groups face.

I have an exciting role in the future of the business by contributing to the development of a truly inclusive recruitment process. This involves, developing and implementing simple effective approaches that can mitigate the impact of unconscious bias on our decision making, and iterating existing processes that allow us to cope with a rapidly expanding headcount.

To make sure diversity and inclusion is deeply embedded in everything we do, we’ve forged partnerships with external D&I and talent specialists. We’ve also introduced inclusive recruitment processes such as blinding CVs, developing interview scorecards and widening our talent pools to ensure we expand our outreach and exposure to underrepresented talent in the industry.

I’ve also recently delivered a ‘Lunch & Learn’ session to the rest of the company, introducing unconscious bias and neurodiversity. It explored the concept of bias and how this shows up in the workplace. The goal of the session was to enable employees to begin to understand their privileges and biases, rethink how bias can underpin the way we recruit and onboard people and show how the Talent team is ensuring we’re building an inclusive workplace. Ensuring our processes are as unbiased as possible is vital.

How are your helping employees adapt to COVID-19?

Our biggest task was to shift the entire workforce to remote working. We’ve circulated employee pulse surveys with accompanying feedback decks where resulting actions are being implemented to better support employees as they work from home. We’ve also scheduled wellbeing calls with employees to ensure they’re coping in the ‘new normal’.

We have driven the first fully global employee support programme for mental health and resilience, which kicked off during mental health awareness week in the UK. This programme, developed and delivered by the Hobbs Consultancy team included several webinars, and group and individual coaching sessions aimed at supporting individuals and teams with resilience, productivity, mental health and learning. Additionally, we’ve had access to seven D&I e-learning modules covering Gender, Ethnic Diversity, LGBTQ+, Disability, Neurodiversity, Masculinity in the workplace, and The Intergenerational workplace.

What kind of person do you need to be for this role?

It’s important to be forward-thinking, people-centred and fulfilled by creating positive change and constructive action. This position is also a great opportunity to engage with your creative side and influence people across the organisation. I get to do this every day, whether developing best practices to attract and screen talent, creatively solving complex challenges, and shaping our policies and practices to have a meaningful impact on the wellbeing and personal/professional development of employees.

Ultimately, I believe to succeed in this role and organisation, it’s imperative that you’re aligned with and live our values through the way you operate.

To cultivate and maintain an atmosphere where employees feel engaged, valued and part of the collective, you need to be a team player. Success depends on teamwork. We’re stronger and able to drive greater positive change when we collectively support each other.

With all that work, is there time for play?

There’s a real buzz in the office on a Friday afternoon when drinks o’clock rolls around. I enjoy welcoming the weekend in by unwinding with my colleagues and celebrating our wins for the week with a drink or two. You’ll always find an exciting activity or fun-filled event in the diary from our Social Committee to look forward to. Outside of work I embrace the hustle and bustle of London, bouldering in Vauxhall, catching up with friends over bottomless brunch and checking out the latest gallery and museum lates.

Find out about our current roles across the globe

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