Meet Sarah - Head of People

Meet Sarah - Head of People

June 23, 2022

Clarilis Administrator

What is your role at Clarilis?

I’m Head of People at Clarilis so this involves everything relating to the employee lifecycle, such as setting up systems and processes to improve the employee experience and make the company a great place to work. This starts with supporting managers when recruiting, ensuring candidates get a positive experience and feel fully integrated into the company. I am always looking at ways to improve employee engagement and retention, developing our performance management system so that people understand what is expected of them and how they help deliver the business’ goals and that they get meaningful feedback on their performance.  Naturally, I spend a lot of time devising the best possible employee wellbeing initiatives, managing compensation & benefits and training and development. Our employer branding is also really important to us. I am working on redefining our company values with our Management team at the moment so that they resonate with all the people who work at Clarilis. I am also working on a new HR system - not only saving time on administration but also providing valuable reporting information to support employee engagement and recognition.

What do you like the most about working at Clarilis?

I like the fact that in a small company you can make a difference and you don’t have to worry about cutting through layers of bureaucracy to get things done that you get in bigger companies.   If something isn’t working efficiently then you can change it for the better, obviously by consulting with stakeholders in the business and selling the benefits of making a change.  There is always such a variety of different projects and tasks to work on.  Working in the People function it’s also really nice that at Clarilis I get plenty of opportunity to work on value-added projects rather than fire-fighting.  I also really like that Clarilis has ambitious growth plans which is really exciting to be part of and I have the opportunity to shape the People processes that will support that growth.  Everyone is really friendly and we organise a good number of optional social activities that help everyone form bonds with people they wouldn’t normally get to talk to in their day-to-day roles. 

What did you want to be when you were growing up?

I wanted to be a teacher so I could mark the register and write on the blackboard (yes it was that long ago there were still blackboards and chalk!). I’d get all my dolls and cuddly toys together and give them a lesson on something or other. Then I realised my handwriting was awful, no one would be able to read it. When I was older I wanted to be a wedding and party planner but there wasn’t much around in terms of careers advice then, so I ended up falling into HR! I love the opportunity of organising Clarilis’ summer teambuilding event and Christmas party though!

What have you always wanted to try but haven’t?

I keep saying I’d like to go parasailing but never seem to be somewhere on holiday near a watersports centre. I just admire them from a distance!


If you were stuck on an island, what three things would you need to have with you?

Not sure if this is allowed, but my dog. He’d keep me company and would be someone to talk to who wouldn’t get grumpy being stranded on an island. Assuming he could find food and not turn on me and eat me. It would also save me from talking to a football (love a Tom Hanks movie!) If it’s not allowed then I’ll take a Swiss Army Knife, guess that would come in handy, although I’d have to learn how to use one first! Then I would have to take something to keep me occupied so I’d take a Kindle so I could read lots of books (I prefer a paperback but that would limit my options). On reflection, an ipad might be better in case I get a signal and people can find me with location settings! Not sure Sainsbury’s would deliver though! Finally, I’d take a solar powered charger for the Kindle / ipad!

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