Meet Jay & Kane, the newest members of The Chemistry Group

(As always) The Chemistry Group has recently been growing at rapid pace with exciting new talent coming into the business every week. We sat down with two of our most recent hires to find out what makes them tick and what they’ll be doing for us.


Jay Springett: Product ManagerJay

Tell us a bit about yourself, what were you doing before you joined Chemistry?

I’ve just joined the Chemistry team after a 7 year stint at SHL/CEB, where I worked my way up the company through a number of different roles. I actually joined the company as part of their managed services team, so I spent quite a bit of time managing the delivery of large-scale recruitment projects for enterprise business clients.

Then I spent time in the tech solutions consulting team, where I was the technical expert on the company’s 360° feedback platforms.

And after that I moved into the project management team, working with clients to deliver complex projects from design right through to delivery.

My main focus was in the financial sector and I worked with some of the world’s largest institutions in that area.

I’m also really interested in the relationship between technology, politics and people, so I do a fair bit of speaking at events and blogging around those topics (here’s an example).


What’s been the proudest moment of your career so far?

I was part of the team that designed SHL’s first ever video-based situational judgement test, which won a load of awards in the industry. That was a really interesting project for me because we got to work with a production crew and CGI artists to bring it to life.


What do you specialise in?

I’d say coming up with ideas and delivering complex projects. I’m all about getting the rigour and science up to scratch behind the scenes so that the bit clients see is completely seamless and reliable.

That and growing beards.


What’s your role going to be at Chemistry?

I’m coming in as Product Manager. I’ll be putting the processes in place that will help us speed up delivery of our existing products while ensuring we have good rigour around delivering new ones. My aim is to up efficiency and structure, so that we can get stuff done without a load of bureaucracy.


Where do you hope to have most impact on the business?

We’re building some seriously exciting new products, which I’m really looking forward to getting involved in. There’s also the new version of our technology to come next year and, of course, providing better value for clients.


If you could change one thing about the way businesses interact with their people, what would it be?

Like that quote, I’d love to see more businesses treat people like ‘a name, not a number’. That’s what really attracted me to Chemistry in the first place; that they want to give everyone an opportunity to be brilliant at work. Every person that goes through an assessment is just that – a person – someone who’s leading as fantastically complex a life as you are. You have to keep that in your thinking at all times.

Dr Kane Bidwell: Product ManagerDr Kane Bidwell

Hi Kane, we’d like to get to know you a little bit better. Could you tell us what you were you up to before Chemistry?


Hi. Before I joined Chemistry, I was working in L&D for an international oil business. My big project there was the design, delivery and training around a global engagement initiative spanning 80 different countries and a number of different languages – that was a bit of a challenge… They’d never done anything like that before, so the data we got back was really valuable and I created a load of initiatives off the back of it that we used to drive a lot of business improvement.

Going way back, I got into consultancy through occupational psychology. I did a psych degree at uni back in Australia and picked up an Occ Psych elective in my fourth year, which really made a lot of sense to me. I found Clinical Psychology a bit too repetitive and you get to have a much wider impact with Occupational – the work we do affects thousands of people across whole organisations, so you get to see really big results.

I took it a step further with my doctorate and spent time with a couple of really interesting businesses while I did that. Then I moved to the other side of the world!


What’s been the highlight of your career so far?

I was involved in a pretty cool project back when I was in Australia. We helped a business identify a need for training, created a methodology, and then rolled it out. That was really good, being involved in something end-to-end.

Actually, wait… Forget that. The highlight of my career was definitely mentoring newly qualified psychologists as part of my doctorate. Seeing how they developed in their first year of practice and helping them figure out how to wade through challenges and regulations was great.

What do you specialise in?

Broadly speaking – people in the workplace and the psychology behind that. You don’t really tend to specialise as much in Australia as psychologists do over here, so I’m classed as a bit of a generalist in the UK. My doctorate focused on L&D, Change Management, Assessment, and Engagement.


What are you going to be doing at Chemistry?

I’m joining as a product manager like Jay, supporting resourcing and development teams as they enhance their processes through technology.


Where do you hope to make your mark on Chemistry?

In the short term, my focus is on bringing additional scientific rigour to my projects but beyond that I’d like to explore how we can apply Chemistry’s methodology to engagement and change management.

As I said earlier, I get a lot of energy from mentoring so I’ll be trying to pass on some of my experience and Occupational Psychology knowledge to the younger business analysts.


If you could change one thing about the way businesses interact with their people, what would it be?

Good question… I guess the biggest thing is false advertising in attraction. It really winds me up when I see things like promises of work/life balance that turn out to be a total lie. Or when organisations actively refuse to change and shut down the people that try to make them better. It’s all about giving people an opportunity to be brilliant at the end of the day – to not do that is just stupid.


Oct, 03, 2015