Holmes Noble Proudly Supports the UK Sepsis Trust with a Key Hire

The UK Sepsis Trust- Head of Operations

The UK Sepsis Trust was founded on the mission to save lives and improve outcomes for survivors of sepsis. Sepsis, or blood poisoning, is the body’s reaction to an infection, in which it attacks its own organs and tissues. Every year, 250,000 people in the UK are affected by sepsis; 44,000 people die because of the condition and 60,000 suffer permanent, life-changing after-effects. Sepsis is more common than heart attacks and kills more people than bowel, breast and prostate cancer and road accidents combined.

The UK Sepsis Trust is dedicated, not only to raising support for those affected by the condition, but also to initiating political change and educating healthcare professionals in spotting sepsis early, which can be life-saving. As a supporter of the UK Sepsis Trust, Holmes Noble provided executive search services, enabling the charity to direct revenues and time to other vital areas of work.

The Role

The UK Sepsis Trust were looking to bring increased rigour to their business by hiring a dynamic Head of Operations to join the senior management team. The organisation has grown significantly since its foundation in 2012, meaning the urgent need to appoint a strong operational professional who could drive change and align current practices with the rate of growth they are experiencing.

The right candidate would possess the ability to advance the UK Sepsis Trust’s administration and finances, whilst managing team growth and development. The key was to source an individual with previous experience of change management and transformational processes, combined with an up-to-date knowledge of operational management techniques and efficiencies. This would ensure the candidate could review the operation and practices of The UK Sepsis Trust to implement change for greater operational efficiency.

This appointment was paramount in allowing the Trust to further raise awareness of the life-threatening condition, increase the support provided for those affected by sepsis and initiate change to help save and improve lives.

Ultimately, the right individual would have a vital role in improving the way in which sepsis is handled in the UK in the future.

The Solution

Within three weeks, Holmes Noble had presented a shortlist of three candidates with a vast array of operational expertise, recommending all for interview. The candidates had been predominately sourced from the private sector, allowing more diversity and innovation to enter the Trust. Due to the need for diversity, as well as the right cultural fit, Holmes Noble ensured that we sufficiently explored the motivations of each candidate to guarantee they were adequately driven to enter the charity sector. Consequently, two of the candidates were invited to second interview stage.

Holmes Noble provided crucial advice and support to the UK Sepsis Trust in guiding them through the search process; a recruitment method they had not previously used. The majority of previous hires had been conducted through internal referrals and recommendations, subsequently this process was crucial in allowing the organisation to gain a different skillset and continue their growth.

Following regular communication with the shortlisted candidates, it became clear that more exposure to the internal stakeholder audience during the interview process would have been preferred. Although each candidate was motivated to join the UK Sepsis Trust and aligned to the charity’s mission, they felt the opportunity to meet those within the Trust would allow them to further grasp the operational change required.

Feeding this back to the UK Sepsis Trust and consulting with them regarding their internal processes, it became clear that another stage in the interview process was required to secure the right candidate. Holmes Noble worked alongside the Trust to implement a final interview stage. This allowed for an informal opportunity for both candidates to meet the team and tailor the agenda based on the candidates own individual needs.

This third interview stage proved instrumental in the successful hire of a highly experienced and motivated candidate.

The Result

Because of the open, consultative and collaborative relationship and through the benefits of adding a final interview stage, The UK Sepsis Trust extended an offer to an exceptional candidate. In addition, they gained an improved interview process for future hires. 


Dr Ron Daniels BEM, Chief Executive of the UK Sepsis Trust, comments: “Sepsis has a devastating human cost. Every day in the UK, individuals and families have their lives torn apart by the condition, but better public awareness and education for healthcare professionals could save thousands of lives each year.

“If we are to capitalise on the current momentum around sepsis, we need UKST to operate at full capacity. Holmes Noble played a vital role in helping us find our Head of Operations, and we’d like to say a huge thank you for their generosity and expertise. Such swift and accurate assistance in finding the right staff to extend our reach is invaluable; and as a young, fast growing charity, it’s gifts in kind like this that make a real difference. We are delighted that Holmes Noble have agreed to be one of our founding partners going forward – we hope to work together to raise awareness, fundraise and encourage other organisations to join the fight against sepsis.”

Holmes Noble

Holmes Noble is a personal and progressive consulting firm that provides executive search, interim and talent consulting services. Our clients choose Holmes Noble because of our exceptional people and the collective ability to identify, engage, recruit, retain and develop senior leaders who deliver growth, effective organisational change and improve performance.

Holmes Noble provides a comprehensive range of services designed to help clients take a long-term view on talent. Working on a global scale we have successfully completed mandates on behalf of multinational listed companies through to SMEs, public-private sector organisations, charities, not-for-profits, start-ups, Venture Capital and Private Equity firms.

Holmes Noble are delighted to have supported The UK Sepsis Trust in this instrumental appointment and look forward to a continued partnership in the future.

For more information on how Holmes Noble supports charity, not-for-profit and social enterprise leaders please contact Amy Speake, Partner at amy.speake@holmesnoble.com