Life at Hastings Direct: Marc
Marc, Director of financial planning & analysis
What's it like working at Hastings Direct? We're an agile and fast moving company where Colleagues can contribute and thrive.
Want to know more? We're going to be talking to different people throughout the business to give you a real insight into what it's like to work at Hastings Direct.
Marc joined Hastings Direct over five years ago, starting as a technical accounting manager working his way up to director of financial planning and analysis. Marc is accountable for the group wide business partnership, financial analysis, budget, forecasting and strategic planning, amongst many other key responsibilities.
What do you love about Hastings Direct?
It's unique, the business has such a strong and positive culture, everyone has the ability to contribute and to see the business grow and everybody's open to positive change, which is brilliant. And it's been so good at attracting and developing talented people that it's been exciting to not only be a beneficiary of that culture, but also to work with so many highly motivated people who are passionate about what they do.
What attracted you to work at Hastings Direct?
When I joined just over five years ago, the Group was at the start of what turned out to be a really positive turnaround story. The people I met convinced me quickly we could make a difference, and be part of something pretty special. One of the things the financial controller wanted me to come in and focus on was converting to international financial reporting standards (IFRS), and I knew with my practice background that was something I could bring to the business on day one.
What would your candidate top tip be?
Firstly, apply! Don't for a second think of Hastings Direct as just an insurer; it's a very special place to work. Secondly, if you get the job, share your ideas; you never know who'll come up with that little innovation which changes the direction of the business.
What does a day in your role look like?
Well I always say I wake up every day excited to see what's in my inbox, so you can take from that no day's the same for me. I guess every day has a mix of meeting people around the business who are driving some of the change I've talked about above, trying to better understand how the business is performing and of course, spending a lot of time with my fantastic team who keep things interesting for me.
What's the main perk of your role?
My biggest perk's the flexibility and autonomy I get here, so long as I do what needs to be done well and in the right way I get a lot of respect from the rest of the leadership teams in the company, and they give me the freedom to work on the things that I'm passionate about pursuing.
What did you do before you joined Hastings Direct?
It feels like a long time ago now but I was an auditor at Ernst & Young, which gave me some fantastic grounding in the technical side of accounting, but public practice wasn't the route I wanted to be in long term.
How has your career developed whilst at Hastings Direct?
Well in the last five years I've had four roles, and each move has been a promotion so I guess quite a lot. I've been incredibly fortunate to be part of a business during a phase of such growth. I joined as technical accounting manager in February 2011, and by December I was the group finance manager (at the time the only employee in the new 'group' function), by early 2014 I'd been heavily involved in the group's bond listing on the Irish stock exchange and a partial sale of the group, and was offered the role of group financial controller. That was pretty challenging as we'd a lot of new stakeholders, including the investor community to think about and we needed to grow the team considerably. Two years later I'm now the director of financial planning and analysis (FP&A) with an IPO under my belt, so you could say it's been an eventful few years for me.
I'm not alone with having role mobility either, with most of my leadership team having had at least three different roles during their time here. Hastings Direct is fantastic at recognising and rewarding talent.