Ulster Bank Case Study

BrightPool was approached by Ulster Bank, one of Ireland’s ‘Big Four’ banks, to assist with the recruitment of a team of experienced collections advisors. It was moving its collections operation from Dublin to a greenfield site in Edinburgh.

dublin skyline

The challenge

The Bank had an urgent need to get the new site up and running without disrupting the operation and thus allowing it to maintain a “business as usual” service.

At the initial briefing stage, our client came to us with this question: “How do we identify candidates with a minimum of 24 months’ experience who can start immediately?” Part of our answer was to devise a robust recruitment timetable for a fast turnaround of search, selection and assessment of new hires. However, it’s not just about speed, it’s also about employing the right sourcing methodology, and we were uniquely placed to help.

Our client explained that its previous approach to recruiting candidates on a temporary-to-permanent basis had been ineffective in delivering the volume of quality candidates at speed. We felt a different approach was needed, and after carrying out some market research on the marketplace and location of talent, we were able to recommend an alternative resourcing strategy.


Within 48 hours of receiving the brief, the BrightPool team was mobilised for delivering the recruitment campaign for the project. Candidate selection criteria was agreed, and a multi-channel campaign was launched to identify the best talent. Working alongside the client, we built a bespoke assessment centre based on the person specification – its role to explore and validate the relevant experience of candidates.

We devised an end-to-end blended solution for temp-to-perm hiring and this included identifying permanent candidates who had the availability to start within 2-3 weeks.

Specifically, the solution for our client included the following:

  • Research of the job market for companies within a set radius of Ulster Bank’s Edinburgh site making redundancies – we contacted the people affected with the relevant skills and experience
  • Advertisement of jobs on targeted job boards, attracting candidates with experience in credit control, collections of premiums and debt/arrears collection 
  • Investigation of the main competitors in the area, and then using social media to approach potential candidates who were not actively looking for a new role but may be interested in a new opportunity
  • BrightPool assessment centres, and as part of the vetting process we undertook credit references (pre-offer) on behalf of the client for all candidates.

The BrightPool difference

Our comprehensive methodology and significant experience in this market ensured “no stone was left unturned” in seeking the best employees for Ulster Bank.

We conducted telephone screening with all applicants to ascertain if they possessed the relevant experience. This rigorous process unearthed many high-calibre candidates who may not have been considered based on their CV alone – some of whom were subsequently invited to the assessment centre and placed with Ulster Bank.

We ensured the vetting requirements were fulfilled for all contract positions and worked directly with Ulster Bank’s HR department for all permanent role vetting requirements. As a result, every candidate met all the stringent check and referencing criteria before the interview stage. This expedited the onboarding process, ensuring all the correct documentation had been collated regarding proof of identity, right to work, employment and residence, well in advance.


BrightPool maintained a 100% ratio of assessment centre to job offer and helped the client place a high number of high-calibre collections professionals within a short timeframe.

Due to the successful placements of the collections advisors, BrightPool was asked to also assist Ulster Bank with other recruitment projects including the hire of these roles:

  • Training and development officers
  • Call operations analysts
  • MI and QA analysts
  • Control and business operations managers


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