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MD Culture Club: First Internet

Joining us for the latest edition of MD Culture Club is digital marketing agency First Internet. 

We spoke to three of their team members to find out what working at First Internet is like! 

The talent lead...
Juliane Speight, Co-owner and Marketing Director

Can you tell us a little bit about the company, before describing the culture at the organisation? 

First Internet is an award-winning full-service digital marketing agency based in Hale, Altrincham. We are a team of 18, services include website design and development, UX design, SEO, social media management and content marketing. Clients are really varied and while some are local, others are based on the other side of the world, so it’s a truly global business, but with a really close, community feel. We work for Peak ai, Citation, Sew Direct and PZ Cussons, to name a few.

How does the company go above and beyond to attract and retain tech talent?

Recruitment is sometimes tricky as we are competing on a national, sometimes global basis for the best candidates, but we think we genuinely offer a standout culture as well as offering great clients. Mental and physical wellness is vital: working in digital can mean a lot of sitting down so we have regular days out, socials, internal and external awards to recognise good work and plenty of days when people can work from home if they prefer. We are really big on training: we ask our recruits what they are specifically looking for and we are very open about progress and expectations. Everyone is unique and we recognise that recruitment is a two-way process so we get lots of the team involved to share their own experiences and feedback on what skillsets they think need to be added to the wider team.  There ae also plenty of team treats, including Friday breakfast, weekly fruit delivery, Friday drinks and the odd office dog! 

What does the future look like for the company and its employees?

More growth, we hope! Since I bought the company with my two fellow directors, we’ve built on its heritage (it was founded over 20 years ago, the same year as Google), but we’ve moved it into a new era, one which really embraces the people and their skills and personalities, while keeping a constant eye on wider developments: we have to, as digital and tech are moving at such a fast pace. Quality content is vital, as is the highest levels of knowledge and expertise so we are always looking at ways to improve and advise our clients. We’ll continue to develop the best possible work, partnering with global brands as well as home-grown talent: it’s the rich mix that makes it so interesting.

The new starter...
Tom Kellock, Developer

Can you describe your role at the company?

As a member of the developer team, my role mostly involves working on projects such as UX audits and full-blown site builds. On top of that, there’s the ongoing support to ensure that our client websites are up-to-date and performing at their best. I also provide support to my colleagues, plus I’m constantly looking to improve our methods and ensure we stay ahead of the game.

What was it about the organisation that attracted you to the role?

First Internet stood out for me as an award-winning business that produced really fun but clever work. They have some big name clients and that list continues to grow and grow. As well as that, they offer a brilliant environment to work in with lots of great perks, such as breakfast or beers on a Friday. The commute for me is great too!

Can you describe the onboarding process you’ve experienced?

My onboarding here went swimmingly. Everything was ready to go on my first day and all the necessary training was provided right away, meaning it didn’t take me long before I was getting stuck in. The team was very welcoming and immediately made me feel like a valued member of the FI family.

The long-term employee...
Daniel Cole, Lead Web Developer

Can you describe your role at the company?

I’m responsible for the management of website development projects from start to finish, as well as any ongoing client retainers. I liaise with the in-house design, development and SEO teams to ensure new websites set a strong foundation for our client's digital growth. 

You’ve been at the company for a number of years, can you tell me what has kept you at the company for so long?

The large client base - I've had the opportunity to work with a wide range of clients from various different industries, which keeps the job exciting, as each project is different and I feel like I learn something new each time. It also means the workload is varied: no two days are the same. One day I may be writing a client proposal, the next reviewing designs and the next populating a site. But really it comes down to the culture - it's a very sociable, fun, kind company with away days, nights out, Friday breakfast delivered to the office, Friday afternoon drinks and a genuine feeling that we are all looking out for one another. It’s a genuine pleasure to come to work, which is hugely important and I think one of the reasons we do such good work: we aim to impress each other as well as our clients and their customers!

What would you say to a person considering joining the company?

They'll feel supported by their colleagues, regardless of experience, as we all try to help each other grow and develop. There will be the opportunity to cross-train i.e. client services can get involved in SEO activity to continuously grow and develop. They'll feel welcomed into First Internet immediately, the team is very close. 

Find out more about First Internet here.

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