The crooton story

man with chalk board

It started with an idea in early 2019…

Launch a recruitment service that delivers measurable results for employers at a highly competitive fixed fee. But not just another recruitment company in an already crowded market. A company that embedded unique targeting technology into everything it did, enabling the precise pinpointing of candidates employers wanted to reach, wherever they may be.

It was early days, but the team behind the concept – led by recruitment specialist Stephen Anderson who had previously launched and scaled a successful national recruitment service for one of the UK’s largest newspaper groups – could see the potential and knew if they did it right, they could achieve their mission of becoming global leaders in volume recruitment.

So in October 2019, they launched crooton (the name coming from a play on words – ‘recruit’ becoming ‘croot’ before becoming ‘crooton’). The team were excited to win their first clients and demonstrate the effectiveness of the innovative geo-fencing targeting software they had developed. 

But then the world changed. Covid-19 hit and the UK, like the rest of the world, went into lockdown. Just a few months into their new business, Stephen and the team faced a crisis.

“Like many businesses, for us the world just changed overnight,” said Stephen. “All the planning and development we had done meant nothing anymore, and we faced collapse just a few months after launching the business.

“But there were much bigger issues in the country; people were dying and vital services were stretched like never before. As a team we felt we had a responsibility to do whatever we could to help, so together we decided that we would provide our targeting service to those sectors – such as healthcare – that were now desperately looking for staff. It wasn’t about the money and it wasn’t about business growth; it was about us helping the essential services that the country was relying on to find the staff they desperately needed.”

This decision proved decisive for the business, and before long they were successfully finding support workers, nurses, and vaccinators for the NHS and other healthcare providers such as Cygnet Health Care. 

They were also able to fill urgently needed positions for companies in the FMCG and Logistics sectors that were also under immense pressure because of the pandemic.

As the demands of lockdown changed, other clients came onboard, all keen to utilise crooton’s targeting technology to find candidates for roles they struggled to fill. These included AM Fresh, Mencap, World Fuels, National Grid, Stagecoach, and Ocado.

Clients were not only impressed with their unique employer fencing technology, but also the fact that they offered a fully managed service to help support internal recruitment teams as well. The service included account management, recruitment marketing across job boards, marketing across social media platforms, in-depth employee search, CV screening and more.

The increasing demand led to the company growing rapidly, from the initial team of four to a team of 18 today, with further appointments scheduled for the next few months.

And that significant growth looks set to continue with other notable businesses and organisations recently becoming clients, including restaurant chains Five Guys and Wagamama, a number of police forces, Hilton Food Global, and international law firm Allen & Overy. And the pipeline of new clients interested in crooton’s targeted approach to recruitment grows every week.

What’s more, increasingly the scope is global, with a number of these major employers keen to target candidates overseas, either for their UK operation or for divisions of their business located internationally.

Stephen said: “We adapted quickly to a situation that impacted every business and organisation in the UK because we knew we had a responsibility to help the country get through it as best as possible.

“Our candidate targeting system helped those employers that most desperately needed staff find the people they needed to provide the care and services we all relied on during the pandemic and still today.

“More and more organisations are now realising that despite the global staffing shortage, there is a highly cost-effective way to find the staff they want, wherever they are. 

“Demand for our service increases every day, both at home and overseas, and due to this, we are growing rapidly and profitably each and every month. 

“The crooton story may have started in the pandemic but we weathered the storm and have proved ourselves and now the future looks incredible for the business. We anticipate and forecast significant growth in the next few years as we achieve our mission of becoming a major player globally for volume recruitment.”