Having already identified the team they wanted to recruit in the UK they needed to negotiate terms and handle tricky restrictive covenants. But they also wanted to ensure they were compliant with UK legislation, as well as adapting the successful MET ethos to fit the UK environment. They needed international HR support.
Working closely with the Group HR Director, Katalin Baranyi, we negotiated restrictive covenants and the commercial aspects of the employment contacts for the CEO and CFO. We then project managed the recruitment of the rest of the MET UK team – liaising with the UK employment lawyer, Katalin and the CEO. We were able to ensure the contracts were tailored to the unique needs of the business, making them meaningful and effective.
We explored appropriate benefits provision including pensions, private medical insurance and life cover. The team were knowledgeable and so the pension needed careful selling, but we achieved 100% buy-in of the scheme.
Having got everyone on board, we set up policies and performance management systems to be compliant with UK employment legislation. We ensured the UK management were conversant with appraisal techniques and managing their team.
We have now developed an HR plan with a dedicated consultant who has the role of a Virtual HR Manager. She supports the team and is progressing through the plan. She has regular one to one meetings with the managers and has quickly earned their trust.
We have helped the CEO to strategise for the longer term, recognising that the churn rate in this very specialist field is high, and they need to have development, succession and recruitment plans in place to counter this challenge.
Initially, both the CEO and CFO had limited knowledge of HR and were reluctant adopters, so part of our remit was to achieve their support and commitment.
MET Commodities London now has a fully compliant set of HR systems, policies and procedures, dovetailing the needs of the UK employment laws with the Group’s ethos. We have become an integral part of the UK team – the go-to person when a member of the team needs an empathetic ear. This has enabled us to work with them in a much proactive manner.
We continue to work with MET – not only in the UK, but across the Group to share best practice, and develop strong HR strategy and implementation.
Katalin Baranyi, Group HR Director says: “I can’t believe how quickly and efficiently we were able to move from a new start up with nothing to everything in place, and peace of mind that we are compliant with UK legislation. They quickly built up my trust and I knew that I was able to leave HR in the UK in safe hands.
Reality HR have delivered a very high-quality service for a fraction of the costs of our employment solicitor. I am very impressed with how quickly they were able to absorb the company ethos, cutting across international borders, and yet adapting the model so it worked effectively in the UK.
They continue to work proactively with us as the business grows, to adopt the very best HR practices across the Group, as well as continuing to support the UK team.”
Tony Hughes, the CEO, says: “We couldn’t do without Reality HR – how could I possibly think that we could? They take the pain out of HR – something I never thought I would say! I admit that when the CFO and I first came on board, we knew nothing about HR, and frankly couldn’t see the point. But now, it is the one area of the business where I can relax. We have a great relationship, and when there is a challenge I know they will come up with the right solution – which is a real weight off my mind.
They understand the way I work and prepare everything so we can have effective meetings and conversations to agree on actions.
We have a meaningful plan and processes in place, but more than that, we have someone who is switched on and understands the unique challenges of our business. Definitely worth their weight in negotiable derivatives!”