We’re delighted to introduce to you RM Results’ new Managing Director: John Baskerville, who joins us with a wide range of expertise from across both the public and private sectors.
Bringing with him thirteen years of experience at board level, we asked John a series of questions to, not only better get to know him, but to understand his thoughts on leading RM Results through its next chapter.
What inspired you to join RM Results?
A number of factors. The first was a chance to get involved in the Education arena, one of the few market segments I hadn’t really done much work in before – I love the challenge of learning something new!
The second was the size and feel of the organisation. Over my career, I’ve worked in lots of different sized organisations from a start-up to a large international solution provider. There is something powerful about the passion and energy you can get in organisations of our size – big enough to make a real impact, small enough to really care about it.
Explain the rationale behind your career moves that led you to RM Results.
I feel I’ve been very lucky in my career – in that I had the opportunity to gain a wide range of experiences early on by joining a technology start-up right at the beginning. One day I’d be cutting code, another I’d be consulting with a client and another I’d be out doing a sales pitch. Looking back, it was a privilege to be working for some inspirational and visionary leaders who put a lot of time and energy into growing and developing the people like me in their own teams. This one opportunity had a massive impact on shaping my career and put me on the road that ultimately led to RM Results.
Looking back on your career, what do you think you have accomplished so far to date?
That’s a hard one to answer. I’ve done quite a wide range of things over the years from building the first ever Online Fund Supermarket in Europe to working with a large government department looking at mapping and visualising the movement of cows! The things that really stick with me, and that I take pride in, are those that have had a real impact, either to individuals or to society. Working on things like the online publication of the Hillsborough Inquiry, the provision of frontline services to probation officers, or supporting the Gamechanger programme looking to tackle childhood obesity in schools – all of these kinds of things help me remember every day that technology can have a strong and positive impact on people’s lives if harnessed appropriately.
My personal favourite was when I used to work with the police service on number plate recognition systems. One of our product releases went into pilot in a police force one Friday afternoon, just prior to a national programme review board first thing Monday morning. As we all sat down to start the board meeting, one of the officers from the pilot force stood up and told us how the new features had helped to save a woman’s life the previous morning. It is hard to forget moments like that!
What do you believe you bring to RM Results?
I hope that I can provide a fresh perspective and set out a clear and compelling direction for us to take. We have some amazing, motivated and inspiring clients who are passionate about their role in education and how to improve it. Alongside that, I’ve seen a wealth of talent, commitment and innovative ideas within our own organisation. I hope I can be the catalyst to help us unlock all the potential that creates.
What does success look like to you?
First and foremost, it is about ensuring that we continue to deliver excellent service to the market and to our customers and to ensure their candidates get the results they deserve.
I want to see strong growth in our own business, and long lasting partnerships with our clients – where we both can see a positive impact on people as a result of the work we do together.
How do you see the educational technology landscape evolving in the next ten years?
As an executive in the technology industry, and as a parent of two young boys, I think it has to change. As an industry, we are already seeing technology skills shortages and forecasts show this is set to get worse over the next five years. Couple that with the fast-paced emergence of technologies such as robotics, artificial intelligence and machine learning, I believe we need to educate our children to be ready for a workplace that is vastly different to what we know today.
I like to think that the very technology that will impact their lives, and that we need to prepare them for, might also be used to transform the way we educate them. Working out how we can harness the power of these technologies to help educators – that’s the fun part!