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Case Study

How Mamas & Papas transformed their recruitment process by moving to a custom-built Peoplebank ATS

Mamas & Papas is a leading UK-based designer, wholesaler and retailer of nursery and baby products. It is now the largest own-brand baby retailer in the UK, as well as being a truly multinational wholesale business, supplying its branded products and ranges to over 40 countries around the world.

Family-founded in 1981 in Yorkshire, England, Mamas & Papas was born out of a desire to better meet the needs of new and expectant parents, understanding that parents wanted high-quality products with a unique sense of identity.

40 years later the Mamas & Papas brand is well-established as the leading premium nursery brand, having won multiple industry awards from leading baby magazines and consumers, to trade and wider industry bodies. Providing an uncompromising approach to quality, style and attention to detail is what makes Mamas & Papas so special.

Gareth is the Recruitment Manager, leading the recruitment model and strategy across Mamas & Papas to ensure the business continually sources, attracts and employs the very best talent.

The challenge

When Gareth joined Mamas & Papas, they were using an ATS (Applicant Tracking System) which was an off the shelf, factory settings system, with very high costs and limited functionality. Furthermore the recruitment model was very much “put an advert out – see who applies” where the ATS was simply a way to log the process of candidate applications. They had a big database of candidates already existing due to Mamas & Papas’ brand attraction, but that database of candidates was not being capitalised upon. This resulted in probable loss of talent, extended time to hire and additional cost to hire (with Mamas & Papas having to pay external recruitment agencies in many cases).

It was determined Mamas & Papas needed to be proactive rather than reactive in their recruitment model and strategy. Having an ATS partner that understood this proactive strategy and adaptability was key.

The solution

Gareth knew what the business needed in an ATS, he just needed to find the right ATS partner. He reviewed a significant number of ATS providers (both UK and international), getting this down to a longlist of eight demo sessions and a final shortlist of four. He ranked these against strict criteria with a scoring system based around key areas including:

  • Existing functionality
  • Bespoke development
  • Ongoing bespoke development & functionality capabilities
  • Mindset and future plans for investment in new technology
  • Cost and value for money

When Gareth contacted his network of talent attraction professionals and researched further into ATS providers, Peoplebank came highly recommended as one of the best ATS for retail – even by some people who didn’t use the system.

“When I spoke to David Beveridge at Peoplebank, I could tell he got retail – how it works and what challenges are involved from a recruitment perspective. David really understood our market, unlike most ATS providers who were just generic. David got retail and he got us.”

Peoplebank impressed not only in their approach, but also against Mamas & Papas strict selection criteria. Peoplebank scored highest and was subsequently selected as Mamas & Papas’ new ATS partner.

The result

“The best thing about this process, and in partnering with Peoplebank, has been their determination to understand and deliver upon our objectives. Peoplebank truly has a talented team.”

Mamas & Papas are now using the Peoplebank ATS which plugs in to their existing careers site. They’re already finding their recruitment process more efficient and more effective than ever before, with a real positive impact from all those within. Gareth highlighted that “time to hire and cost to hire are significantly reduced, and the luxury of having talent accessible has been fantastic in raising the bar when recruiting.

The features that are really making a difference are:

The bespoke Talent Bank search functionalities

This allows Mamas & Papas the ability to create, develop and easily pull upon a deep pool of talent specific to unique role requirements. A full process and experience that truly represents the Mamas & Papas brand, core competencies and values in the recruitment process.

Authorisation to Recruit (ATR)

Peoplebank customised ATR to work in exactly the right way for the business. Each one of the 100+ hiring managers at Mamas & Papas has their own unique ATR path and authorisation chain, which provides true clarity in the recruitment and hiring process.


The Peoplebank ATS is very simple to use, how and when people want. No one ever has enough time, so having an ATS that’s easy to use, GDPR compliant, and provides clarity to the recruitment process in identifying and securing the best talent is very important.


Gareth has really valued the support from Peoplebank, especially his Account Manager Andrew McDougall. “Being assigned an Account Manager to the build project has been invaluable. Andrew has an inspiring positive attitude, capability and such perseverance in his approach. I’d tell him what I wanted to do, he’d go away and figure out how the system could do it. Support is something everyone talks about as part of what they do, but you never know how supportive a company is until you need it. Andrew and Peoplebank have continually delivered on their promise of outstanding support.

Mamas & Papas is continuing to expand, with more new stores due to open over the next 12 months, and more new territories opening up around the world for them. The Peoplebank ATS is a key part of that growth and the Peoplebank people are now part of this expanding Mamas & Papas family.

“If you’re a business wanting to reduce your time to hire, cost to hire and generate a deeper pool of accessible talent for your vacancies, then Peoplebank is the way forward.”

Find out how we can help improve your recruitment process.


Mamas & Papas