Firm’s future leaders

Gripple's new graduate recruits, front to back, Katie Filson, James Kennedy, Ewan Gilfillan, Annabel Hornsby, Samuel Lee.

Gripple's new graduate recruits, front to back, Katie Filson, James Kennedy, Ewan Gilfillan, Annabel Hornsby, Samuel Lee.

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Five graduates have fought their way through a gruelling selection process to secure jobs with one of Sheffield’s leading innovators.

More than 300 graduates applied for a job when the wire joining and tensioning systems specialist announced it was launching a second graduate recruitment programme to find Gripple’s “potential leaders of the future.”

The numbers were reduced to 50 by Gripple’s recruitment consultants, Management Bank, who then carried out telephone interviews designed to reveal the applicants’ communication skills, intelligence and team spirit.

Face to face interviews with Management Bank’s Deborah King and Katrina Ritchie from Gripple’s employee board cut the numbers further and a final nine were then invited to dine with Gripple stakeholders, including founder and chairman Hugh Facey.

Then they faced a day packed with assessments, including an innovation test, teamwork, a presentation by each candidate and a final director interview.

The successful five comprise Katie Filson, who has a degree in international business with French from Sheffield Hallam, mechanical engineering graduate Ewan Gilfillan and business and enterprise graduate James Kennedy, both from Sheffield University, business and management graduate Samuel Lee and modern languages graduate Annabel Hornsby.

Gripple says its 2012 graduates are already having an impact on its business. Last year’s recruits included Glenn Bills, who has now become product manager at Gripple’s sister company, Loadhog; Jonathan Pankethman, who is spending six months as an industrial sales manager in Toronto, while Susie Ramsden is spending three months as a seismic marketing assistant in Chicago.

Chris Sampson has become a supply chain co-ordinator, Frances Davis has become a marketing co-ordinator and Michael Hodgson has become a marketing and communications officer, all based in Sheffield.