Geraldine MacCarthy of Personio is smiling into the camera against a bright background.
Geraldine MacCarthy. Image: Personio

Personio’s Covid-driven growth and future hiring plans in Ireland

2 Nov 2020

Personio chief revenue officer, Geraldine MacCarthy, talks about the company’s hiring plans for the rest of 2020 and how it has continued to grow during the pandemic.

HR software provider Personio has continued to expand despite the Covid-19 pandemic. Earlier this year, the company announced that it had raised $75m, bringing its total funding since launching in 2015 to $130m. It also said it would launch its human resources, recruiting and payroll platform in Ireland and the UK.

In spring, it opened its fourth Dublin base with a remote team. Harnessing the challenges posed by the pandemic, chief revenue officer Geraldine MacCarthy explains, was an important part of this.

MacCarthy, who was previously head of Dropbox Business in EMEA, says Personio’s Dublin team will now grow from 10 to around 30 before the end of the year.

“The pandemic challenged us to flex and adapt our service to meet the evolving needs of our customers,” she says. “The crisis highlighted the pivotal and strategic role played by HR teams and demonstrated the importance of an effective people strategy. Yet, at the same time, many businesses and HR teams were increasingly swamped with tasks such as organising remote work set-ups and furloughs.

“As such, we realised early on in lockdown that there was an increasing demand for HR software and good people analytics to free HR teams from their administrative burden, so that they could focus on their people and strategic tasks. We invested our time at this stage to build new features to meet the evolving needs of our customers.”

The Personio team acted on that surge in demand and made the growth possible, she says. “A company’s purpose and values are the foundation for everything they do. But you can’t tackle a crisis without your most important asset: your employees.”

Combining strong values and focusing on people played a “central role” in Personio’s continued growth. This saw the company hire “top talent from some of tech’s biggest players”, including CFO Birgit Haderer, who previously worked at Zalando, and vice-president of product Alex Grant, who previously worked at Hootsuite.

Expanding in an evolving market

Alongside championing your values and your people, flexibility is key, MacCarthy says. She believes that while many businesses have had to pivot and adapt since the pandemic began, we shouldn’t take it that “pre-Covid normality will resume”.

“If anything, there will be even more change as things that before the crisis seemed impossible now begin to become embedded in how we now operate in society and in business,” she says. For that reason, she advises businesses to “stay close to their customers and their market” to keep their finger on the pulse of how things are changing.

“They can adapt and innovate more nimbly and will establish a strong advantage in the future,” she says.

The approaches many companies have taken to business continuity during the pandemic, she adds, revolve around software adoption and flexible work policies. For software providers like Personio, the challenge will be to arm businesses with the tools to ensure they can continue to meet their business goals.

“I think this has cemented even further the importance of B2B tech SaaS businesses as enablers of growth in our customers’ businesses – from two-person companies right up to the largest enterprises in the world.”

Jobs at Personio

Personio currently has offices in Munich, Madrid, London and Dublin. For anyone interested in working at the company, MacCarthy says that the Dublin team plans to grow by around 20 people by the end of the year. It will mainly be hiring for engineers and roles in international sales.

The company’s biggest teams are product and engineering, she says, followed by customer operations and success.

“We’ll continue to build the team in Dublin next year, adding more roles and functions over time,” she says. “Overall, we’re almost 500 people now in four offices. This means that we have almost doubled in the last 12 months. By the end of 2020, we want to have about 580 employees.

“In general, to continue our growth trajectory we look for talent in all areas, including sales, engineering, marketing and customer success.”

Learn more about jobs at Personio here.

Lisa Ardill
By Lisa Ardill

Lisa Ardill joined Silicon Republic as senior careers reporter in July 2019. She has a BA in neuroscience and a master’s degree in science communication. She is also a semi-published poet and a big fan of doggos. Lisa briefly served as Careers Editor at Silicon Republic before leaving the company in June 2021.

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