The first ever, public event was called “Skip the Bullshit” and was hosted at Lyst Studios on Hoxton Square

DBR is Breaking Recruitment (1 Year later)

I got one of those alerts yesterday from Google reminding me that a year ago we hosted our first public DBR event. I thought it would be a great chance to take stock of the things that DBR have achieved and tell you all a bit more about what we are up to.

So apart from meeting up, drinking too many beers and making new friends. What have we been doing?


You might remember a little post I wrote about the subject on Breaking Recruitment and how I believed that it’s not technology that has the answer but people. My belief was that the biggest problem was the lack of professional recognition within our industry. Recruitment is not seen as a real job by most people. This leads to a lack of training, real business recognition and a very low bar to entry.

Ironically though everyone has to hire people!

When we first started to meet up, DBR was exciting because it was the first time I had spent time with fellow recruiters sharing my pain over a pint. We soon started to recruit more attendees to our evenings at the Dragon Bar and suddenly I had more people to share with, more people to learn from. The advice, ideas and help that the group started to share, made us all better as recruiters. It is now amazing to think that we have a slack group with nearly 170 in-house recruiters across 5 timezones. When I think about the sheer number of people that this potentially reaches and the power we have as a hive mind, my brain boggles.

If you are an in-house recruiter, come and join us, there is a place on the internet where you can come and ask for help and get an honest answer. With little effort on your behalf, you get sensible answers from some of the most interesting and successful in-house recruiters around the world. All of a sudden, in-house recruiters, we are no longer an island. No longer an isolated pool of expertise that recruitment agencies, HR tech vendors or even our own companies can pull the wool over your eyes. JOIN US!

So many familiar faces in this picture!


It seems like us recruiters and our colleagues in HR have historically been the worst people when it comes to choosing technology, advertising solutions and even our thought leaders. We are easily jones’ed into buying things probably because we don’t want to miss out to our competitors. For some reason we are easily sold products that are really not any good (How did Taleo get so big?) and forget to look at someone’s CV when they start ranting and making themselves out as a thought leader!

The list above is the proof in the pudding! It seems like even the recruitment mafia Glassdoor don’t bother to ask their top influencers how many people they hire. How many of those (most mentioned/top influencers) recruiters have hired someone in the last 6 months or for that fact actually looked at a CV?

Most probably NONE of them!

Its the same with HR tech and job boards. Most job boards, innovative recruitment solutions use their existing customers to onboard other customers that don’t have the time to properly evaluate solutions. The fact that we have a place to share ideas and knowledge means that you can actually log in and ask

So what is really LIKE? I hear you are using them at X (insert hip company here everyone wants to work at anyway) and X @recruiterfriend!

You can almost always guarantee that you will get an honest reply and insight on how the tool is being used and most importantly how many hires it makes. THIS BLOWS MY MIND! The beauty of DBR is you have real access to the people that are using those solutions. Of course we all compete, of course we all work for different brands but it seems like I am surrounded by plenty of other awesome recruiters that want to make a difference and help each other in the industry.



Yep. DBR helps everyone get better jobs!

Recruitment is not always the peachy place of taking potential employees out for lunch or stalking people on the internet. Sometimes, tough things happen! You turn down an awesome candidate you wanted to get a job, you lose budget on a role or the worse.. you have to let some people go!

The candidate channel on DBR is one of the most amazing places to be. Once someone is happy to have their details shared with the community, their CV passes under the noses of hundreds of recruiters who only get in touch if they have a relevant opportunity.

Yep, you read that right. We share candidates for free!

There is no better feeling of hiring someone awesome for a team you work with… if you cant do that, then at least help them get an awesome job. If you have hired someone via your DBR network or got a job through it. Please pass this article on to that person or comment below. We don’t track success, but I love to here awesome people getting awesome jobs.


Finally, after a bit of revolutionary ranting (true to any evening with me) I need to say thank you to the people that have helped and/or been involved along the way!

Yep, I’m totes emosh about these peeps!

To our elusive BDFL, the man that invited us all for a drink that time but doesn’t want the credit. Thank you Hung Lee, for starting this, your honesty and your ideas.

My fellow founders that sat round those first few tables, admins that make sure DBR is a sane and safe place. Matt Buckland, Matthew Bradburn and Kristian Bright. Keep up the awesome work and as always, ❤ u guys!

To those of you that supported, sponsored or just helped us in the early days! Looking at you Rob Long, Stevie Buckley, Aaron Neale, Becs Wells, Layla Kidwai, Willem Winjens, Ken Ward, Nick Yockney, and all those of you that have been with us nearly two years now!

Thanks to all our amazing sponsors for your support: Workable, StackOverflow, HireMyFriend,,, yborder, docuSign if you want to sponsor us, please get in touch.

There are many more people that have supported us so far, more than I can mention. If you commented, retweeted, liked, attended, mentioned us to a friend or employed one of us, thanks! I hope you don’t feel left out that I didn’t mention your name!

Finally everyone who is a member. DBR loves you!

I hope that we manage to stay true to our values and that we can continue to grow. The road so far has not been easy but I have enjoyed every part of the journey! DBR is the only safe place for in-house recruiters, run by recruiters that still recruit. We don’t make any money from it. It helps us get better!