When you work at Starling, no two days are the same. This is especially true for people working in our Operational Rapid Response team.
“They’re a completely reactive, multi-functional team, focused on making sure that our customers get the best possible outcome,” says Gavin Dale, Head of Operations Development. “They deal with peaks of activity, for example following a product launch or advertising campaign.”
Gavin set up the team 18 months ago. There are 29 people in the team, which is growing fast. Half work in Cardiff, with team leader Amber Lewis (pictured above, right), and the other half work in Southampton, with team leader Simon Dodds (pictured above, left).
Thinking on your feet
The Operational Rapid Response team works across multiple areas of the bank, including Customer Service and Fraud. They also help the team dedicated to verifying and processing applications for Starling accounts, known as the Customer Acquisition team.
“We help Customer Services when a new product launches, for example the Kite card for kids, and when Anne does interviews on TV or the radio,” says Amber. “When Anne did a radio interview with Chris Evans, the number of people applying for accounts hit the roof. We all jumped in so our customers didn’t have to wait too long to get through to us.”
The team also keeps an eye out for launches of new phones. “On the day that a new model is released, lots of people need to set up the Starling app in their new phone so we bolster the team,” she says.
Team leaders plan for the unexpected and workflows vary, whether it’s cheque processing, Customer Service or account applications. Amber and Simon monitor queues throughout the day using Starling’s bespoke technology and proactively send team members to help when needed.
The Operational Rapid Response team comes from a broad range of backgrounds and is dynamic. “Anything can change at any minute,” says Simon. “So we try to recruit people who have backgrounds in busy industries and are used to jumping in and out of things.”
Simon used to run a hotel on the Isle of Man and a pub in Berkshire. He joined Starling in June 2021 as part of the Customer Acquisition team and became a team leader in January 2022.
“Everyone brings something different and everyone can be themselves,” says Amber. “We’re not one particular type of person and that all folds into the team.” There are people in their 20s and people in their 50s, people who used to be carers and people who worked in car finance. Amber previously worked as a dental nurse. “When Covid hit, that prompted me to change careers.”
She joined Starling in October 2020 as part of the Operations Support team. She’s been a team leader since March 2021.
“Starling is inclusive, friendly and fast-paced,” she says. “Our CEO Anne Boden once said that Starling is run by people who do things well. And that’s what we have in this team.”