The Walton Centre is the only specialist NHS neurosciences trust in the UK dedicated to providing comprehensive neurology, neurosurgery, spinal and pain management services.

With a CQC rating as “Outstanding”, around 1,450 staff work for The Walton Centre, and they treat more than 120,000 outpatients and 18,000 inpatients each year across the full spectrum of neurological conditions.

The Walton Centre created the role in order to increase the level of commercialism across the organisation.

Other areas of the NHS had also tried to recruit a similar role but without success, so The Walton Centre were attracted to our visible headhunting element but at a more attractive price level than traditional headhunting.

The Challenge

The Walton Centre needed a professional who was both incredibly commercial as well as having a background in marketing and communications. This is rare to find as essentially it was two roles in one.

In addition, finding someone with the right level of commercial experience within the public sector was going to be extremely challenging. So the search required expanding to the private sector, identifying those individuals who had the right level of commercial experience but also the capability to apply it to the public

What We Did

We initially identified professionals who were in an existing Sales & Marketing role knowing these roles usually entail a significant commercial aspect to them.

In addition, we also identified dedicated marketers who could demonstrate their commercial acumen through spotting business opportunities etc.

Despite being a role for the NHS, due to the commercial aspects of the role, the extensive search entailed identifying candidates with experience working in the private sector. We identified candidates with a track record in both sales as well as designing and implementing marketing/communications strategies – which resulted in speaking to a large volume of potential candidates.

The Result

The Walton Centre were very impressed with the initial long list of 8 candidates they were presented with. This enabled a broad selection of suitable individuals to proceed to the initial face-to-face interview stage with us before shortlisting.

Following our extensive research and interview process, we reduced the list of candidates down to a shortlist of 4 for the directors of The Walton Centre to interview alongside us.

As a result, a brilliant candidate was appointed that had a really great mix of both public and private sector experience.