iGaming Needs to Mix Outside Industry Talent for Success

iGaming Industry Staffing

iGaming StaffsIt’s no secret that the global job market hasn’t been in the best health in recent years. While all industries have felt the effects of the economic downturn, iGaming has been one of the few areas to escape relatively unscathed.

But the lack of job opportunities in other e-commerce industries has meant that professionals new to online gambling are looking to make the transition. If this sounds like bad news for iGaming professionals, don’t worry – it’s not.

Rob Dowling is the CEO of iGaming specialist recruitment firm Pentasia. He explains: “The companies that tend to get it right are the ones that create the right mixture of the best people from gaming who are attracted to strong brands and those that come from outside the industry.”

Just to reiterate, those in the industry shouldn’t feel threatened by potential newcomers to the industry. Rather than that, they should see it as an opportunity to learn from a specific skill set that iGaming companies may not previously have placed a premium on.

Even if gaming people do find themselves in competition with e-commerce types for jobs, you can  Dowling reveals that in his experience more often than not those with industry experience have the upper hand.

He explains: “When push comes to shove gaming companies prefer to stick to what they know which are professionals from within the industry.”

So now that iGaming professionals can rest assured, those in the directors’ seats should begin to ensure that they create the right balance amongst their staff. Something that Dowling says is crucial to companies who want to succeed in all areas.

Speaking of the companies that impress him the most when it comes to staffing, Dowling says: “They get the best of both worlds and are quick to identify areas that others aren’t very good at.”

The example Dowling draws upon to highlight this point is with CRM. He explains: “CRM is done far better in the travel, hotels and airplanes industries than in gaming and people from these industries are the places that the top gaming brands should be looking.”

Speaking about the hot topic of the moment, he adds: “This will be particularly useful when it comes to mobile, find the industries that have done mobile well and recruit from there.”

Mobile is an area where plenty of recruiting is taking place right now. Dowling reveals that Pentasia alone have placed more than half a dozen heads of mobile roles in the last twelve months and that those with specialist knowledge in this area are very much in demand.

Not only are they in demand, but Dowling explains that mobile specialists could also find themselves in fairly senior positions.

“Product specialists can find themselves rapidly rising through the ranks if demand for their skill set is high. Those on the technical side of mobile operating are also enormously in demand in the UK and also in Scandinavia.”

The chances are that one sentence above may have caught your eye. The ‘the companies which impress him the most’. Having worked with pretty much all of the major companies in iGaming, Dowling is well placed and has some interesting opinions on who he believes are laying the best foundations for success.

He says: “bet365, Party.bwin and Pokerstars keep hiring great people. Companies that have a definite focus and know what they’re doing impress me the most. PokerStars know exactly what they’re doing and I think so does bet365. Party.bwin have gone through their issues of the consolidation of two brands.”

Dowling’s confidence in Party.bwin shows that companies can restructure and succeed. It will certainly help if this is true as restructuring, especially at executive level, is one thing that a number of big iGaming companies appear intent on at the moment. While this should hopefully be good for the companies themselves, it should also provide new opportunities for professionals looking for new challenges.

Of the companies that have restructured recently, few have done so in a bigger way than Ladbrokes. Under the direction of Richard Glynn, Lads have employed somewhat of a revolving door in recent times with the digital department taking on a number of new people.

Betfair have also had their personnel issues, which despite not being necessarily voluntary, they appear to be resolving themselves. This effort was handed a major boost recently with the appointment of Breon Corcoran as CEO – who makes his way over from another iGaming company Paddy Power.

Coral have also renewed their efforts in the online industry. An effort that is being headed up by John O’Reilly, another executive from within the gambling industry and one that has more experience than most. At the end of his 18 years at Ladbrokes, O’Reilly was Head of Online, which will hopefully leave him well prepared for the task ahead at Coral.

But if he and Coral are serious about making progress in the iGaming industry, perhaps they should consider Dowling’s advice, after all it appears to have worked for many companies who have trodden the same path.

The best of both worlds pays greatest dividends with the best from e-commerce working alongside those that know the industry. Not only is this mix key to the success of the company, but it also ensure that iGaming professionals remain as in demand as they always have been.