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A spotlight on: Courtney McCusker

This month we say hello to one of our newer employees based in Glasgow HQ.

Courtney McCusker joined BiP as part of our HR department earlier in 2022, working alongside HR Director Alan Mathie.

In what capacity did you join BiP? What did your previous job entail?

I joined BiP as a HR Advisor, my previous role was HR Coordinator for an Energy Company.

Why did you choose to join BiP?

I chose BiP as after my three (yes three!) meetings with Alan I got a nice feel for the place. It seemed like a really nice place to work, and I wasn’t wrong! Everyone has been lovely, and I feel like I have been here forever already 😊.

Also, stability was a big thing for me due to losing my previous job when the company unfortunately collapsed. So, I am here for the long run…

How has your BiP journey been so far? Is there anything we could do differently to welcome new colleagues?

I am loving it so far, three months down the line and I still want to come back every day, haha! Honestly though, I am enjoying every minute and still learning new things every day which is keeping me on my toes. At this point I wouldn’t change anything.

This month we say hello to one of our newer employees based in Glasgow HQ. Courtney McCusker

Courtney living her best life in Hoi An – Vietnam

Can you sum up what your job involves?

My role involves being first point of contact for dealing with all HR queries, managing the HR system with any updates, compliance, new starts, leavers etc. I also support with the delivery of Talent Acquisition so any CV’s interviews, job offers etc.

The BiP One Programme is also a main part of my role so the overall engagement with the wider business is something I work on daily.

How is working at BiP different to your previous roles (company and position)?

It is very different. My previous position allowed me to build a lot of knowledge and experience around dealing with complex HR queries that I maybe wouldn’t have been able to do elsewhere, so now I am at BiP I am learning a whole new side to HR that I am loving.

When are you at your most productive?

Definitely the morning.

What’s your favourite thing to do outside of work?

Being in a different country, eating nice food and drinking nice wine

Quick fire:

  1. Football or rugby – Neither (football if I HAD to choose)
  2. Cat or dog – Dog
  3. Hot or cold – Hot
  4. Joggers or Jeans – Jeans
  5. Ties or T-shirts – T-shirts
  6. Coffee or tea – Coffee
  7. Lager or ale – Neither sorry!
  8. Book or film – Film
  9. Salty or sweet – Sweet
  10. Tattooed or not – Not
  11. Night out or night in. – Night in

New staff hatch from incubator

Following a four-week nurture process, we’re delighted to see new colleagues Ciaran, Dave, and James complete their BiP induction and hatch out into the Business Intelligence sales team.

Our new team members have undergone an initial induction to the company, combining sales and product training. The public sector marketplace is a huge beast to get to grips with and BiP is working hard to ensure every team member has a good understanding of the public sector landscape, how it’s changing, and how we can help with procurement and tendering.

Comprehensive training

Comprehensive training has been delivered to the new team members on their product – Tracker – ensuring that they have a full overview of its benefits and services and understand the system completely before demonstrating it to customers.

New staff hatch from incubator

Ciaran, Dave, and James.

As well as dedicated time with head of training ‒ Colin Stewart ‒ the new ‘onboarding’ approach has also been actively supported by a number of stakeholders from across the business, who provided an overview of their products/marketplace and how the jigsaw of BiP’s holistic services fits together.

Team leaders, senior key account managers, product owners and researchers have all been involved in sharing their knowledge with the new team members, providing invaluable insight into the company.

Colin Stewart, Sales and Product Trainer, said: “These were invaluable sessions, and I would like to take the opportunity to thank everyone for their engagement.”

Following each module, the new team members successfully completed assessments, returning great scores in each.

Incubate and integrate

Colin continued: “The group have responded really well to the training and have been engaged and enthusiastic throughout the initial weeks. All are now on the phones and putting it all into practice.

“The next phase is an incubation on the sales floor working through leads to engage our customers and secure demonstrations of Tracker Intelligence before their integration into the Team.”

There’s still lots to learn for our new team members and the training process will be ongoing, as procurement never stands still! Big changes are on the horizon, which were outlined in the Government’s Procurement Green Paper ‘Transforming Public Procurement’.  These will overhaul the public sector procurement process and BiP will be able to guide you through these new challenges.

Brilliantly innovatively People

BiP is committed to investing in new colleagues and ensuring they are nurtured through their initial employment, while incumbent staff benefit from regular knowledge sessions and updates from the procurement training team.

We’re dedicated to developing our Brilliantly innovatively People!

Spotlight On: Vivien Chan

This month our spotlight falls on Media City again as we talk with one of our newer faces, Vivien Chan.

Vivien joined BiP as part of our DCMC and Cadence Marketing services in August 2021, she has quickly established herself as a vital part of the survey team – bringing some great new ideas and problem solving skills, along with some amazing baking skills and Chinese dumplings to the team!

She was also nominated for our New Employee of the Year award – a thoroughly deserved nomination.

In what capacity did you start at BiP?

Research Executive

What did your previous job entail?

Project management – meaning I had to be organised and detail minded, with a good pair of eyes!

Why did you choose to join BiP?

I like the market proposition of Cadence and it’s good that I can continue working in a research related job role.

This month our spotlight falls on Media City again as we talk with one of our newer faces, Vivien Chan.

Vivien Chan, Research Executive at Cadence.

How has your BiP journey been so far?

Exciting, I’ve been working with various clients on different research topics, and I’ve been given great the support by all my lovely colleagues.

Is there anything we could do differently to welcome new colleagues?

A team welcome tea break in the pantry? ​​​​​​​

Can you sum up what your job involves?

Understanding a client’s research needs, and transforming that into a survey which will engage the target audience. Then it’s a case of analysing that data collected and turning it into a meaningful research report/whitepaper for the client.

How is working at BiP different to your previous roles (company and position)?

In terms of the target audience, it is quite different. In my previous role, the projects were more related to commercial/consumers/employees. Now it is more focused on public sector audiences.

When are you at your most productive?

Morning time is the best.

What’s your favourite thing to do outside of work?

Baking, cooking and enjoying delicious food!

Quick fire:

  1. Joggers or Jeans – Jeans
  2. Dresses or T-shirts – T-shirts
  3. Coffee or tea – Coffee
  4. Lager or ale – neither – cider please if you’re buying!
  5. Book or film – film
  6. Football or rugby – neither, haha
  7. Cat or dog – cat
  8. Hot or cold – hot
  9. Salty or sweet – sweet
  10. Tattooed or not – not
  11. Night out or night in – night in

Spotlight On: Amy Bourne

This month our spotlight focusses on our Salford office, and a stalwart of the sales team there, Amy Bourne.

Amy began her BiP journey in 2013 starting as an Account Development Manager with what was Ingenium.

It was back in 2016 that the BiP family expanded with the acquisition of the public sector marketing specialist to help boost the BiP brand.

Now, six years on and an evolution of the department has seen our Cadence brand embed itself into BiP, with its direct engagement of the public sector reaping rewards. As SME spend becomes ever more crucial to government procurement, the department helps facilitate early engagement of buyers and suppliers, bringing new innovations to the public sector market.

amy bourne

How would you sum up your job at BiP, Amy?

New business management is the main aspect of my role, supporting clients with external marketing activity, I also help train any new staff that join the team.

When did your BiP journey begin?  

Through the acquisition of Ingenium.

In what capacity did you start? Why did you join BiP? Why did you stay?

I started as an Account Development Manager, worked my way through to Sales Manager, then back to a full time portfolio management role with an added training function.

I joined Ingenium originally because I saw how much Sam Gilding enjoyed the role and wanted a new challenge outside of the world of customer service. I had dabbled in sales and marketing a little in previous roles at BHS and Direct line (B2C), following the acquisition I stayed in the role as not too much changed at first – same people, same product. I’m still here now because I like the client engagement and both the internal and external relationships I’ve built up over the years.

It’s a completely different organisation to the one I joined, but I like to think that I’ve adapted to the change and continue to apply my knowledge and experience to the business.

When are you at your most productive?

Definitely in the morning (I should say all day, right?)

What are the major differences you’ve seen between Ingenium as was and becoming part of BiP?

With a few exceptions, a completely different team in the Manchester Office, it was a very informal office. BiP definitely has more ambition to grow the business unit and there are more progression opportunities now, which is a positive.

What are the biggest changes you’ve seen in sales and marketing throughout the years?

There’s been a big shift in process. Everything has become far more processed driven for onboarding clients and raising PO’s and measuring performance metrics.

What’s your favourite thing to do outside of work?

Before becoming a mum, I would have answered with socialising, spending time with friends, day drinking, having a good laugh. Now its spending time with my daughter, watching her develop into a little character and teaching her new things. Of course, the other stuff would be nice but I’m still finding my feet post lockdown.

Quick fire:

  1. Joggers or Jeans – Jeans
  2. Ties or T-shirts – T-shirts
  3. Coffee or tea – Coffee
  4. Lager or ale – Lager
  5. Book or film – film
  6. Football or rugby – Football
  7. Cat or dog – dog
  8. Hot or cold – Hot
  9. Salty or sweet – sweet
  10. Tattooed or not – Tattooed
  11. Night out or night in – Night in​​​​​​​

Join us next month for our spotlight on Software Developer – Alvaro Sanchez.

Spotlight On: Eddie Regan, PASS Procurement Consultant

Eddie Regan is one of BiP’s longest serving employees and a font of procurement knowledge

Starting at the company in 1984 as a salesman, Eddie is now our PASS Procurement consultant, sharing his experience in and knowledge of government procurement with clients and colleagues alike.

How would you sum up your job at BiP, Eddie?

I suppose a bit of a “Jack of all Trades” would be a good description. I deliver training, consultancy, webinars, occasional blogs, speak at conferences, judge the GO Awards, assist sales when they need my input, work with the Events Team, annoy IT Dev and generally try to keep out of trouble.

When did your BiP journey begin?

In 1984, back before many of our colleagues were even born. I saw an advert for a salesman, came for an interview and Ron and Leslie decided to offer me the job and the rest, as they say, is history. From sales, I moved into production and eventually into delivering training and consultancy.

Why did you stay?

I like the job, my colleagues, the variety of my role and the challenges it presents. Over the years, when you catch up with some of the people who’ve left, they often tell you how much they enjoyed BiP.

When are you at your most productive?

When given a challenging task and a deadline, just like most people I suppose. The thing about my role (and a shout out to Phil here as well) is we’re often up against deadlines and that’s probably when we enjoy it most.

We have all heard the tales of the legendary Portakabin® where BiP was born, but what was it really like?

Just that, a cold draughty Portakabin® on a Building Merchant’s site. One long room, with three small offices off it, with one of them containing the equipment we used to publish Contrax Weekly, the great grandfather of Tracker and everything else.

What are the biggest changes you’ve seen in the company and in procurement over the years?

In terms of the company, it’s grown beyond comprehension. From the Portakabin® all the way to our Glasgow and Manchester offices and from half a dozen people to currently around 140 people. It’s also been one hell of a journey.

In terms of procurement, no-one understood it in the early days. We would get letters and calls from public authorities threatening legal action against the company for publishing their notices, as they didn’t want suppliers from all over the country bidding for work. Thankfully, buyers and suppliers are a lot more attuned to the regulations these days and I think it’s fair to say that BiP played a major role in opening up the public procurement marketplace.

Are there any major changes in procurement on the horizon we should know about?

There are major reforms coming in England and Wales in the next 12-18 months and Scotland and N. Ireland will probably, at the very least, tweak some of their current regulations. However, procurement never stands still, which is one of the interesting things about my role.

What’s your favourite thing to do outside of work?

Spending time with my wife Roseann and walking Mac, our Westie.

Quick fire round:

  1. Joggers or jeans – Joggers for lounging about the house, jeans for weekends
  2. Ties or t-shirts – Love my t-shirts
  3. Coffee or tea – Tea, but only first thing in the morning, then it’s usually water
  4. Lager or ale – Lager, but only craft or imported – British lager is awful
  5. Book or film – Book every time
  6. Football or rugby ‒ Football
  7. Cat or dog ‒ Dog
  8. Hot or cold – Hot, but not too hot
  9. Salty or sweet – Savoury for me
  10. Tattooed or not ‒ Nope
  11. Night out or night in – Night in mostly

In our next spotlight we will be chatting with Amy Bourne in our Media City office about her role in BiP.

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