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What The World of Accenture Means to a Go Getting Geek

Category: testimonial, Accenture, Channel 4, What Our People Say, Staff Testimonial, leeds

Testimonial.

Accenture, the company which has trail blazed innovation across more than 40 industry sectors since 1951, its business DNA built on the ideas and technology that create business transformations.   The company, which has been chosen by 91 of the Fortune Global 100 and is regarded as one of the most admired in the world.

 492,000 global employees

6000 clients across 200 countries

200 offices across 52 countries

It would be easy to think that Accenture, through this success and international reach is a haven for career anonymity.  That creative sparks may be stifled by corporate process.  It would be easy to think that.  But in reality, individuality is the lifeblood of Accenture.   Every one of its customers, each and every employee can feel the spotlight and move forward productively.   

We were fortunate indeed to get some time with someone who is helping Accenture break more digital boundaries in the UK.  Tim Edmonds, the man who powers the digital architecture projects for Accenture, which right now means supporting major broadcasters on some pretty ground breaking stuff and recruiting the right people for tech a team based in a new Leeds office. 

Before we got in touch, we had a quick look (thanks to all that tech around) to see what we could find out about Tim.  And there he was…pushing a whiteboard across a square in Leeds setting off a flock of pigeons all captured on film featuring on LinkedIn.  

Not quite what we were expecting.

We don’t speak Java, but Tim talks tech with a brilliant sense of humour to create a sense of ease for us luddites.  So we asked him to break down for us exactly what the world of Accenture means career wise for go getting geeks and to explain exactly why the word “refulgent” is important to him and just what happened about those pigeons.

So Tim, are you simply more eccentric than executive, surely your work is serious stuff?

Absolutely, but when you are facing a recruitment challenge like the one we are managing, you need to be different.  It is important to be yourself and reflect the creativity you are looking for – and offering.

Can we have a few more details on the recruitment project this video was all about

Accenture provide the ideas and expertise for many of the world’s top tech environments.  Leeds is really important to us at the moment and I am helping them find the right technical folks for our new projects in Leeds.  Sounds easy but there are a multitude of challenges.   One of those is image.  That is to say, getting the people we want to appreciate that a big corporate name, does not mean a big compromise on creativity.  Of course there are commercial objectives to deliver and technical standards, but it is important that whoever we recruit is able to feel assured that original ideas are worth a great deal also.   That’s a big attraction for joining Accenture – originality.   I have always been able to be myself and still get projects done as they should be for our clients.

So are you commercial or creative?  Executive or edgy genius?

In reality I suppose both.  Management and business both have constraints.  I don’t really call myself a manager, but I manage people.  I see myself as more of a mentor, which means hopefully providing inspiration and confidence.  I see my team as horizontal, working together to use our ideas to deliver technical action. What our Accenture workplace does is to enable me to keep my personality and humour in front of the team throughout.

 Hence the whiteboard and pigeons?

Exactly.  We want young techs to be inspired by our Accenture digital team and by the creative scope they would obtain working with media & entertainment clients in Leeds. I didn’t set out to make a video featuring pigeons, they were unpaid extras that became a talking point!  What I wanted was to bring the old school whiteboard to life to show the blank canvas they would have and to do that in an entertaining way.  It’s a fine line between risk and inspiration, but I know that my track record speaks for itself and that comedy is how I express myself.  It was about balance.

Were you inspired by tech stars, or by entertainers?

When I started, I aspired to be like certain people in the industry.  That’s a rite of passage really for young professionals anywhere.  There aren’t many tech people who you can quote and live up to though - and I realized that I wanted to make my mark in a way I was comfortable with.  Comedy is a passion and my role models are actually Chris Morris (Blue Jam) and Stewart Lee (Jerry Springer the Opera). When I started I did an IBM graduate scheme.  I then, as many do at Uni for example, diversified within that field.  It’s no different now, young professionals want to emulate the success of those around, but I have always felt that progress is better made when you are not living up to the expectations of someone else, but being and expressing yourself.  

Your recruitment video is both expressive and individual, does it fit in with Accenture’s HR style?

Well that is the brilliant thing about working for Accenture and my video underlines that well.  Of course we have corporate guidelines and a robust process involved in HR, but it is recognized that you have to resonate to attract the right people.  Process is vital further down the line before you sign off an employment offer, but to find and entice those creative technical brains you have to capture their imagination first. 

Be refulgent would you say?

(Lol) yes I would.  And did didn’t I!  We want bright sparks and we want them to know they can shine brightly with us working on our client projects.

Is it enough in tech to have qualifications or are you saying there is room for more?

A great thing about Accenture is the absolute diversity in the people who drive our business forward.  This is also strongly underpinned by our clients.  So we both look beyond recruiting stereotypes.  Specific technical experience isn’t always the key, someone may be more switched on to trends and have the right thinking keep ideas flowing.  We all then enjoy putting the good ones into action.   

You are highly technical, so surely you love specialist skills.

My role is Digital Architect, so yes very technical, but I like to call myself a creative technologist!   Which means I appreciate a balance and I am all for individuality. Tech can be something of a rabbit hole you can get sucked down, looking for genius and novelty.

What would you think if you were just starting out and saw your own recruitment video (complete with pigeons)?

Well I would probably think raise my eyebrows at the very least, and perhaps want to meet them.  Then I would probably go along to hear myself speak at one of the talks I did up in Leeds.  If I was competitive, I may just write a poem and get my foot in the door by wowing them with my ideas.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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