Gala Coral tools up to cope with applicants

Gala Coral Group is building up its arsenal of recruitment tools in the midst of aggressive growth within the UK gaming sector.

Betfair has steadily built its internal recruitment team in recent months as the company prepares for expansion, and last week Paddy Power revealed that it was bolstering staff in the UK, Australia and Ireland. Now Gala Coral is implementing StepStone Solutions Talent Acquisition to handle the 300 applications it receives each day for job vacancies.

Group resourcing manager Magnus Batey told Recruiter that the company has “a lot” of vacancies, mostly entry level, across its brands Coral Bookmakers, Gala Bingo and Gala Casino, along with online and in support functions such as finance, HR, IT and marketing. The group was refinanced earlier this year, which was contributing to a “very positive outlook”, significant investment in the business and growth in support roles, Batey said.

Batey could not comment on how many people Gala Coral had hired over the past 12 months.

Asked if Gala Coral was seeing a different type of applicant now than before the recession, Batey said it was not clear as they had had no way previously to track where its applicants had come from. “We worked with the Jobcentres, had notices up in shop windows, and so on. Now that we have iGRasp [the StepStone product], we are able to make use of job boards and a lot of other channels,” he explained.

Batey said he could not reveal hiring plans for the coming year, but he emphasised that “there is a lot of optimism” in the business at this time.

Earlier this month, Gala Coral Group welcomed two business heavy hitters to its board. Carl Leaver, most recently director of international, home and direct at Marks & Spencer, joined as group chief executive. Rob Templeman, CEO of Debenhams, became non-executive chairman.

When asked if he was adding to his own in-house recruitment team, Batey joked, “Oh, I wish.”

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