Tech boom sees Scots recruiter expand Manchester foothold

Edinburgh recruiter steps up operations in Manchester to meet record demand for skilled tech professionals

Independent IT recruitment specialist Cathcart Associates is to expand its foothold in Manchester to meet the record demand for skilled technology staff among the north of England’s start-up businesses.
The company, which is headquartered in Edinburgh, projects 100% increase in turnover year on year over the next three years in its Manchester division, taking revenue to over £4 million by 2020.  Headcount is expected to double over the same time frame.
Sam Wason & Gordon Kaye of Cathcart Associates, Edinburgh
To meet the challenge of the new workload, the business has established a dedicated training programme for graduate recruits who will work on the company’s expanding Manchester-based client list. Cathcart, which was founded in Edinburgh in 2009, has projected ambitious yet achievable fee income targets for the next three years that would be a record percentage growth for the company if achieved.
Manchester is a hotbed for technology start-ups and since opening its Manchester operation two years ago, Cathcart has seen demand for its specialist IT recruitment services grow steadily, as well as chalking up some significant business wins, including a partnership with one of the UK’s best digital agencies, Mando.
Outside of the office, Cathcart Associates has been building its reputation with its sell-out event series MancML, organised alongside AI/machine learning startup Octavia.ai. Running quarterly, these events bring together some of the brightest minds in the UK in the fields of Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Data Analytics.
According to the firm, the informal meet-ups give Manchester-based companies which are pushing the boundaries of machine learning the chance to share experiences and hear from speakers at companies like Peak BI, Auto Trader and INRIX.
Cathcart says it believes in playing an active part in the buzzing technology and IT community in Manchester.  These free events, create opportunities for startups and entrepreneurs to forge partnerships, while offering a glimpse into some of the UK’s most prominent IT companies and providing businesses with support and additional learning.
Sam Wason, Co-founder and Director of Cathcart Associates, said: “The volume of tech success stories coming out of Manchester is impressive. Manchester’s technology sector is bursting with potential and we are excited to be part of the tech scene here and to support it as it competes with other tech hubs for talent and business.
“While there are other IT recruitment firms in the area, Cathcart Associates stand out for its quality of approach and service. We are an independent business, free from the constraints of a parent company, and our dedication is now feeding through to the results we are seeing in the business.”
The company’s graduate scheme has been set up to deliver a unique training programme that provides trainees with the highest possible standard of recruitment training. Cathcart already has a policy of hiring only new graduates and this programme formalises this growth strategy.
Five trainees make up the first cohort undertaking the tailored programme to become fully-fledged recruitment consultants. The six-month programme will see the trainees undergo intensive training, mentorship by senior team members and subsequent integration into the business.
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