Big or Small company when choosing an employer in tech?

Choosing between a small or large company in Tech

When the time comes to look at a new opportunity this can often be met with a little bit of disbelief. Many professionals must accept the reality that whilst you hold the desire to make an external move, such a move perhaps will struggle to provide the level of change that is much sought after. Companies often seek appointments that provide a relevant background with the successful candidate coming from a similar business both in terms of the size and offering. An individual will often be hired based on their understanding of a company and culture as much as relevant skills.

However the technology world is perhaps somewhat unique when it comes to new opportunities. Whether you are responsible for the development of the products and services or a salesperson driving revenue, when making the jump to a new company you are not restricted to simply exploring competitors in your market place. Perhaps the biggest differentiator in this world is scale of company. With so many established organisations of varying scales to weigh up in addition to the option of many start ups with a variety of funding positions there is much to be positive about when considering options. However can such choice create confusion or indecisiveness? We have summarised some of the key drivers to be considered when weighing up the type of Tech business to choose from in your next move:


Products & Services

Sometimes when considering a more established business to move to you are likely to consider the company itself and the long term prospects as opposed to the specific division you will be part of. Perhaps consider that not every product launched by an established business is successful. In reality whether you join an established or new business the performance could carry the same risk. However with a start up the interest in the product or service holds greater influence. 


Your market value is your market value and when it comes to salary whether you are looking at a big company or a small company, dependent on your circumstances, you will have a minimum expectation. All types of companies will have to meet this if they want you or other suitable candidates. Where the biggest differentiation occurs is in the additional perks. A more established business is likely to provide a fairly consistent benefits package which could mean private health, a decent pension and a reasonable bonus scheme. However a start up or early phase business perhaps won’t make such guarantees initially but will eventually implement such schemes where possible. They  should counter such a shortfall with more performance related enticements such as equity or profit share. Such a scheme could prove significantly more lucrative should the company prove a long term success. 


Visibility of a clear infrastructure that provides a specific route to achieve your career objectives is far more accessible in a large organisation. What it takes to achieve such progression will also be clearer and the natural rate of movement should mean estimated timescales to achieve promotions can be measured alongside the measurable objectives to justify this. This is again making the assumption the business line is established within that business, as it may be hard to progress if the business unit fails and this is the only place you built your reputation in the company. Progression is perhaps the most serious misconception when joining a start up of a tech business. The reality is when such a business is looking for talent they are doing so as a result of confidence and the need to implement a organisational structure that will support growth. Of course as the business does well more opportunity will open but there still is a clearer incentive in companies at an early stage.


It is very easy to say that all the risk sits with a start up, they may not have the brand, customer book or resources to support poor performance. However they have the people that created the idea and therefore the people that will do anything to make it successful, the hiring approach in such an organisation means people with a stronger emotional interest are closer to decisions and will also do everything they can for there people and backing the hires they make. In actual fact we hear of large scale redundancies at more established businesses a lot more, so job security is still a risk, in addition they have the resources to make external appointments that could have a negative impact on your responsibilities and pressure to avoid loss of income by keeping underperforming departments going. 


Whilst a lot of what we discuss perhaps highlight the SME marketplace as a good place to be in Tech the reality is whatever scale of company you join it is an exciting place to be and everything carries risk. It is important you believe in the product you are creating or selling. Whether a big or small business is bringing a new product to market or improving what they have you can play a major part and good talent is hard to find so options should always be there to you. 

At Martin & Conley we walk with a range of companies big and small, established and new and would be happy to discuss your options in more detail if you are looking or hiring. Feel free to contact us at 

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The difficult decisions that lay ahead for New Business Enterprise Sales professionals

Many will agree that the role of a new business enterprise sales professional can be one of the most exciting and financially rewarding positions within any tech company. They are the employees that take product innovation to market, whilst supported by others, drive the growth of new revenue streams. 

However despite being such an integral part of any business they have a more complicated career path than many of their fellow professionals. We look at the key consideration that will influence the career decision making process for a New Business Enterprise Sales person. 


The product lifecycle perhaps perfectly demonstrates what a new business sales role offers in terms of longevity and reward, particularly within technology. The fact is at some point sales performance in the product / solution you bring to market will decline and your influence will be limited. The simple answer is to improve what you are selling or develop a new and better enterprise offering. If you were a sales professional in a B2C environment then such a plan of action would be perfect. However in the enterprise sales role, by this point improvements and new offerings will largely be presented to an existing customer base by the companies account management teams. So what is next for you …………..

Move internally and sell other products / services

A good option, if you work for a company that has the infrastructure and range of divisions to allow you to do this. However this is not without risk. The timing may be perfect for you to leave your current role but is that mirrored in any prospective new role. Ask yourself these questions. Where in the product lifecycle does this opportunity exist? Why are you not in this division in the 1st place? Is this a progressive opportunity? 

Move into Account Management

Account Management in Technology organisations is in general sales focused. The constant requirement to develop products and services and maintain a competitive edge means there is always plenty to offer existing customers. Another benefit is such parts of the business tend to have a more hierarchal structure given their longevity and as a result this can offer other development opportunities such as team management. However you must consider the effects of losing the potential excitement of bringing new customers into the organisation or being the 1st person to present innovative ideas. Also why have you not taken this route so far?

External move

One of the advantages of being an Enterprise Sales professional is that on the external market more frequent moves are widely accepted due to the nature of the position. Being an active candidate can be driven by lack of progression (new business sales teams tend to have relatively flat structures so this is often forced), product lifecycle coming to an end or even poor sales performance (you may buy into the concept on joining but external factors can impact your go to market strategy), as well as traditional reasons for looking at new opportunities. In addition to this it is probably one of the easiest professions in which to move between companies at a different scale as many start ups seek talent from established businesses and the big players will equally seek talent that has been successful with limited resources. The external move can offer you greater control and allow you to re-visit the drivers behind your decision to take your current role. 

Whilst at Martin & Conley we are responsible for influencing the external move what makes us successful is our longstanding relationships and our ability to guide you at key times in your career. 

Should you be considering a move or wish to discuss this article in more detail please do get in touch at 

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Tech Talent movement in the UK over the last 90 days

IT professionals remain one of the most sought after talent pools in the UK. According to LinkedIn 40,851 of these have changed roles in the last 90 days. A number that excludes IT development skills such as software engineering. 

Given such an aggressive war for talent is currently taking place we have taken a closer look at which sectors and companies have recently had a high demand for IT professionals.  


Most IT professional movement by sector in the last 90 days

  1. Financial Services
  2. Hospital & Healthcare
  3. Telecommunications
  4. Retail
  5. Staffing and Recruitment

It is perhaps no surprise that Financial Services sits top of this list given the sheer scale of the sector. Digital transformation is high on the agenda as retail banks continue to close down branches in favour of app based banking. Perhaps the biggest surprises on the list might be Retail and Staffing & Recruitment. However if we consider Retail, the high street is suffering, which means more investment in technology to drive online sales. Staffing & Recruitment currently faces major issues such as GDPR, this places the emphasis on development of existing CRM setup. In addition Digital presence is proving more important than ever due to increased competition in the market place and prospective candidates & clients using digital platforms as a key source in the decision making process. 


Top hirers in the leading Sectors

Financial Services

  1. Barclays
  2. HSBC
  3. Lloyds Bank
  4. Aviva
  5. Citi

Hospital & Healthcare

  1. NHS
  2. Public Health England
  3. Bupa
  4. IQVIA
  5. Priory Group


  1. Vodafone
  2. BT
  3. Virgin Media
  4. Openreach
  5. O2


  1. John Lewis Group (including Waitrose)
  2. Sainsbury
  3. Tesco
  4. Asda
  5. Argos

Staffing & Recruitment

  1. Hays
  2. Frank Recruitment Group
  3. Reed
  4. Whitehall Resources
  5. SThree
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