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Butlin's case study with Pinpoint
Case study

Why Butlin’s feels “free to imagine” the future of recruitment with Pinpoint

Hospitality recruitment is famously demanding, involving high-volume hiring across geographies and role types. With nearly a century of experience under their collective belts, Butlin’s is constantly working to improve recruitment processes on both sides of the screen.

Hospitality recruitment is famously demanding, involving high-volume hiring across geographies and role types. With nearly a century of experience under their collective belts, Butlin’s is constantly working to improve recruitment processes on both sides of the screen.

Butlin’s has been synonymous with British seaside holidays since Billy Butlin opened his first resort in 1936. His dream was to inject color and happiness into the drab holiday experiences of the time. Today, Butlin’s continues to thrive as a hub of endless fun and brilliant service, all thanks to an industry-leading team.

But behind the scenes, recruiting the wide range of employees required to create Butlin’s unique brand of magic had its challenges. Georgina McLeod-Morgan, Butlin’s Head of Resourcing, and the Butlin’s Resourcing Team juggled the complex task of staffing three bustling resorts alongside their Central Support Centre.

Unfortunately, their legacy HRIS system wasn’t designed with effective recruitment in mind. The resourcing team and hiring managers across the business were bogged down with tedious administrative tasks, meaning less time to focus on more strategic resourcing activity.

When a window of opportunity opened to adopt a fit-for-purpose applicant tracking system (ATS), Georgie had just one problem—Butlin’s IT team were already in the midst of a massive software migration following the Butlin’s sale, so their focus had to be on successfully completing that project. Georgie needed a tool that would address the businesses recruitment requirements and be easy enough to implement without IT expertise.

Key info

  • Locations: 3 resorts + head office (Support Centre)
  • Industry: Leisure, travel, and tourism
  • Headcount: 4,000+
  • Size of talent team: 15 (Support Centre & Resorts)

The challenge

Butlin’s legacy system was a human resource information system (HRIS), built to automate administrative processes like payroll and benefits. Recruitment wasn’t part of the native design, which left Georgie and her team struggling to manage the specifics of targeted and strategic recruitment.

This led to several challenges:

  • Communication breakdowns: Coordinating between central recruitment and resort-specific teams was cumbersome, making it difficult to develop consistent processes company-wide. Candidate communication suffered, too—recruiters couldn’t see a candidate’s email history, making conversations harder to follow.
  • Clunky, manual tasks: With no bulk functionality, every task was manual, from sifting through CVs to notifying candidates who wouldn’t proceed. Scheduling interviews involved an average of three manual contact points per candidate, taking valuable time away from more strategic tasks.
  • Limited control: Changing application questions in their legacy HRIS was tricky and time-consuming. “You could tell it wasn’t designed by a recruiter,” Georgie said.
  • Lack of insight: Without a fit-for-purpose talent acquisition system, insights into recruitment effectiveness were murky at best, hindering strategic improvements.

The result was an inconsistent candidate experience, which didn’t align with the experience Butlin’s was aiming for.

They needed a system that could enhance recruitment processes without adding complexity—particularly when their HRIS contract ended during a major IT system overhaul following Butlin’s separation from Bourne Leisure. Georgie had the option to change the ATS at this point but it would have to be without any IT expertise and would need to be fast and aligned with Butlin’s resourcing strategy.

How Butlin’s charted a course toward recruitment success

1. Fit-for-purpose ATS

Replacing their HRIS’s recruitment module with new, dedicated software was a big leap, especially without the IT expertise from their internal team. “We had to be brave and just go for it,” Georgie said. In Pinpoint, she found an ATS that was so much more, filling in some of the gaps their former HRIS had left behind.

From the start, Pinpoint’s technical experience put Georgie at ease. When Butlin’s changed over to Pinpoint, everything went so smoothly that no one outside the process even noticed.

Butlin’s careers site, job listings, and application process continued without a hitch—even though things looked dramatically different on the back end.

Butlin's careers site

2. Amazing candidate and user experience

Since implementing Pinpoint, Butlin’s candidate experience has undergone a complete transformation. Candidate communication management ensures that no one slips through the cracks, and improved tracking keeps hiring managers on top of who they’ve spoken to.

Thanks to automated interview scheduling with built-in text reminders, candidates can now book interviews directly and arrive better prepared, reducing the friction that can sometimes deter entry-level candidates.

“If a system isn’t providing value for your recruitment team, it’s failing at 50% of its purpose,” says Georgie.

3. Bulk functionality

The ability to move candidates through the process in bulk was a big win for Georgie and the resourcing team. Bulk downloads, bulk declining, and the ability to move candidates through interview stages in batches all represented massive time savings.

Electronic scorecards have replaced paper interview notes, keeping data centralized, accessible, and easy to manage in compliance with GDPR.

Select, move, and download candidates in bulk

4. Intuitive and easy-to-build reports

Key recruitment metrics like time to hire were simply not an option in Butlin’s legacy system, and the team has been enjoying their newfound insights.

“For us, the value is in just being able to see the data and establish a baseline for setting some further goals on how we improve our candidate and hiring manager experience” said Georgie. The team now has visibility into where candidates are finding Butlin’s, helping Georgie and the team decide where to spend their recruitment pounds.

Pinpoint’s user-friendly reporting has also helped resolve some of the consistency challenges between locations. “We can see where things are taking too long and improve those processes,” said Georgie.

Insights Hub reporting from Pinpoint

Now that we have a system that’s working effectively, we’re free to imagine how we can improve our processes even further.

Georgina McLeod-Morgan
Head of Resourcing, Butlin's

5. Outstanding customer support

The entire Butlin’s team is a big fan of Harry, their dedicated Customer Success contact. “He’s been an absolute rock star for us,” said Georgie. Throughout implementation, Harry ran weekly meetings to guide the team on where to focus next, managing them through the process with care.

Georgie has also loved Pinpoint’s chat functionality, which gives the team quick feedback whenever they have a real-time question.

The results

Butlin’s has seen a fundamental transformation in their recruitment efficiency. Pinpoint’s ease of use and robust functionality have saved time and allowed the resourcing team to focus on adding value through more proactive activity.

While their old system left them with no usable baseline data to compare against, a few results are still clear. Recruiting and onboarding take far less time than they once did, with less manual effort. More candidates are applying for open positions, and they’re better cared for throughout their journey.

With centralized data and automated processes, teams across Butlin’s can collaborate more effectively, ensuring a consistent candidate experience.

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