Skyscanner is a leading global travel search site that collects, collates and compares prices for every single commercial airline in the world. Last year alone, the Edinburgh start up created over 200 jobs and now have over 500 staff across six global offices, including Barcelona, Miami and Singapore. The company boasts an impressive array of work experience opportunities with an extensive programme for both interns and graduates. Kirsty McKenzie speaks to Graduate Programme Assistant Marso Jammes to find out what makes Skyscanner so special (and why you should go and work for them).
As Skyscanner’s Graduate Programme Assistant, you help recruit interns and graduates worldwide, but how did you first become involved with the company yourself?
I studied law and did a postgraduate course in geopolitics before joining Skyscanner. What I do in my everyday job is not directly related to my degrees, but I do use skills I acquired at university. I think I’ve brought a fresh eye to the team, and that’s definitely what we are all about.
Skyscanner has gone from strength to strength – what has it been like seeing the business grow?
I’ve been working for Skyscanner for a year now and it really has been fantastic to watch such a great product evolve and develop at such a fast pace. You’re right when you say we’ve gone from strength to strength; we created over 200 jobs last year and the end of 2014 we’ll have recruited an additional 200 people, including our first graduates and interns. We’re a really international organisation, with over 35 nationalities working here and websites in 30 languages. To think we help over 25 million unique visitors plan their travel every month, or that our apps have been downloaded over 30 million times, really gives you an idea of the scale of this business – it’s an exciting thing to be part of.
What would your advice be to any young person interested in working for Skyscanner. Are there any specific attributes the company looks for?
Be daring – we are looking for passion, talent and enthusiasm. We recruit people with potential as opposed to specific profiles and degrees – I’m a good example of that. Show us what you could bring to Skyscanner, think outside the box.
How easy would you say it is for graduate to get involved? What opportunities do you offer?
Our graduates are permanent members of staff from day one and are therefore completely integrated into the teams. They are given their own areas of ownership and can get involved in cross business projects if they wish to expand their knowledge to work on things outside of their daily tasks.
Our graduates in Technology and Business/Marketing get to rotate between all the related teams in their areas. The marketers rotate in sales, advertising, PR, social, digital and country marketing while the techies rotate in development engineering, test and data acquisition. This is a fantastic opportunity for them to get to know all the areas of the business and decide after 18 months which team is best suited to them. We also offer internship placements every summer across in our Marketing and Technology departments and they too are given projects and responsibilities from day one – they’re not making coffee or photocopies here!
What’s the best part about your job? And the most challenging?
Graduate Programme Manager Kim Watson and I put together the first ever Skyscanner graduate programme. This is definitely the best part of my job as well as its biggest challenge! It is very exciting to come to work every day and do things that have never been done before. It allows a lot of freedom, flexibility and space for imagination. Graduates and interns are a very important part of Skyscanner’s growth – nurturing and developing talent is vital in helping us support our ambitious plans for the future.
What’s next for the company?
Here at Skyscanner, we want to be the world’s number one travel search site. We believe we’ve brought users the best global flight search, and now we’re bringing the same technical innovation and global focus to expand into both hotels and car hire. We’ll keep growing and we’re really excited about the future. I’d invite anyone looking for a role in a fast-paced, challenging and rewarding environment to apply to our schemes and be part of this – our global 2015 campaign will kick off in late September, so keep an eye on our job page!
Find out more about careers with Skyscanner at www.skyscanner.net/jobs