Skip to main content


In 2010, Metro Bank attempted what no company had attempted in 100 years: launch a new consumer bank in the UK. Since then, growth has been staggering and—to keep up—their workforce has expanded by 33 percent every year. Their talent acquisition team sustains rapid business growth by employing a modernized applicant tracking system to hire with impressive efficiency, catalyze diversity and inclusion initiatives and bolster company culture. Since implementing dashboard data reporting, they’ve saved 80 hours weekly as recruiters no longer have to compile manager updates. Metro Bank can also propagate its employer brand by leveraging recruitment marketing functionalities that are fully branded, in-house and centralized.

“It's probably the only ATS I've worked with where all the recruiters are happy to use it."

Paul Mouland, Recruitment Operations Manager, Metro Bank

About Metro Bank

Metro Bank was founded under the premise of being a Main Street bank with a service-oriented culture. They started in London and have grown to 67 locations and counting. Their retail banking model is winning over consumers while winning awards from the business community and repeatedly being voted by employees as one of the UK’s top places to work.

HR Challenges

For each of the past eight years, Metro Bank’s workforce has increased by 33 percent. Metro Bank was established less than a decade ago and faced the additional challenge of being a very young organization. Their HR department needed technology that would allow them to be highly efficient while instilling a strong company culture. As a retailer of financial services, Metro Bank also knew that their candidate experience was linked to their customer experience and needed to be equally outstanding. Metro Bank’s strategic positioning relies on being an industry innovator, so they also require agile tools to support continuous evolution for their strategic initiatives, such as D&I goals.

Solutions for Efficient Hiring, Driven by Company Culture

Metro Bank’s commitment to a strong employer brand begins with candidates: they have maintained a 100 percent response rate to applicants, despite fast growth year after year, by employing Avature’s automation features and available chat-bot integrations. With entirely centralized hiring, in 2018, Metro Bank hired over 2,000 people and approximately 75,000 applicants went through their Avature ATS. While they are a very young organization, Metro Bank has succeeded in forging a company culture that deeply resonates with employees. They created the slogan “One In, One Up” to communicate this culture and utilize employee referrals to help the organization grow rapidly.

Creating a Culture of HR Innovation

Metro Bank is dedicated to leading the field to employ HR best practices, from salary transparency to optimizing job post language that attracts the most diverse applicants. By using a centralized platform to manage all requisitions, they can add a D&I footnote to their job ads in just one click.

All new employees, from tellers to the CFO, receive the same introduction to Metro Bank’s culture during a two-day onboarding program. These onboardings happen at the assessment centers where candidates are interviewed, fittingly named “The M Factor.” A positive employee experience has built Metro Bank a strong employer brand and the talent acquisition team mines this whenever they have a new requisition. Opening the position triggers an automated request to the hiring managers, which asks them to publish a review of Metro Bank on Glassdoor to help build enthusiasm about working with the team. Employee experience continues to be a priority and as employees look to grow in their careers, Metro Bank supports them by removing traditional requirements—having taken into account which skills can be trained for—and funding certification programs.

“Internal mobility is strongly embedded from day one. We've taken ownership with a workflow step that indicates whether we’ve got our best candidate pool for the shortlist or not, which gives insight to the hiring managers ahead of recruitment to say, ‘This is what we’ve done already and this is what we think we can do next about it.’"

Paul Mouland, Recruitment Operations Manager, Metro Bank

In addition to adapting job ads for D&I, Metro Bank also easily tailors job ads to target other specific audiences, such as internal candidates. When current employees apply for an open position, they have a much shorter application process where they only need to complete a short questionnaire that updates their profile in the Avature people data platform. Metro Bank also organizes programs and events to help employees learn about other departments before applying. Despite industry upheaval resulting from banking shifting to online and mobile applications, Metro Bank’s HR strategy has been successfully evolving alongside business drivers.

Using Data Analytics to Optimize Talent Acquisition

“The configurability is straightaway the most important thing. I literally change something within a workflow, a process, or a template every single week. Without that, we absolutely would be dead in the water."

Paul Mouland, Recruitment Operations Manager, Metro Bank

With the analytics and automation features of Avature ATS, Metro Bank uses a workflow to highlight whether a short list includes a diverse candidate pool. This feature has been so successful that they’ve made it their goal to deliver a highly diverse shortlist every time for every role.

Metro Bank’s other noteworthy accomplishment entails saving every recruiter three hours each week thanks to the reporting features in their one-platform solution. Metro Bank performs substantial ROI analysis using Avature’s functionality for creating unique, trackable links. Individual dashboards for each role help each team member take ownership of keeping their data clean. Data is even shared directly with the executive board, so they can access up-to-date KPIs from the talent acquisition team in the same place where they receive reporting from other areas like customer service, finance and sales. The finance team also has a specialized report, which they can reconfigure themselves, that lets them work out the future business cost of any ongoing headcount.

The Future

Metro Bank doesn’t plan to slow down anytime soon, so data analysis is essential to its continued success. One goal the talent acquisition team set this year is to cut their already low reliance on agencies in half. In addition to their previously mentioned objective of creating a diverse shortlist every time and for every role, they also are considering other ways to prevent bias—such as making CVs anonymous with Avature’s parsing capabilities. As the industry continues to evolve, you can bet that Metro Bank’s team will employ automation to focus their time on strategic tasks and partnering with the business.

Customer Stories

More related content

Why Events Are the Backbone of Any Diversity and Inclusion Strategy

Events are the best way to get front and center with talent and the ideal way to communicate your employer value proposition when it comes to D&I.


Nurture Your Recruitment Strategy Through Talent Segmentation

Marketing segmentation improves success for strategic HR initiatives across the talent life-cycle. Learn what you need to get started.