Reinventing industry processes requires people of the highest calibre

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Specialisms covered with MCP Plc:

“Bristow Holland are in the business of recruiting people of a high calibre. Over the last 12 months, we’ve hired 4 exceptional people who are all outstanding in their field.“


Steve Lamb, General Manager

Exceptional software demands exceptional people

MCP (Maritime Cargo Processing) is a stand-alone software company working on the cutting edge of logistics. Their Destin8 product allows the transferral of electronic communications between all parties – customs, HMRC, hauliers, clients, customers, freight forwarders and other Government agencies. This allows shipments to go through every step of the Multimodal process with the minimum of physical paperwork. 

From its inception in 1985, MCP’s Destin8 Port Community System (PCS) software reinvented how cargo and port release processes work. Now a team of 38 people, with Destin8 active through 110 ports around the UK, they wrote and continue to update all their software themselves, and have now reached the third iteration of their PCS as their reach carries on growing. 

Bristow Holland have played an important role in securing specialists of a high standard to allow MCP to expand their offering. The skill sets required in their vertical are extensive and employees need to not only possess the learning capabilities to pick up all the necessary expertise but also be the right people to fit in with the company’s ethic and internal culture.

A business based on relationships

With the UK finally exiting the EU in 2020, MCP worked closely with the government and HMRC to ensure trade readiness. Their proven software, backed up by a professional and solution oriented customer service team, gave them the impetus to extend their coverage throughout the UK port community, and so they started the search for new members of the team to allow them to expand.

The nature of what MCP does meant they knew they needed to look for a specialist recruitment agency. The mainstream channels could provide a mass of CVs from capable people, but for their kind of work, MCP needed someone who could send over one or two truly great candidates. Managing Director Steve Lamb did some calling around, spoke with a few senior managers and Bristow Holland emerged consistently as the best people for recruitment in the IT & tech sector. 

Steve bases a lot of his business relationships on instinct, often making the right call on a partnership from how he gets on with them at the initial meeting. He immediately clicked with Andy Bristow and was won over by his confidence and calm assurance, remembering: “They were very relaxed about their business. They were selling, but didn’t ram it down your throat.” To Steve, this spoke volumes about our expertise and industry knowledge around specialist recruitment.

The first hire at MCP went very well – going on to become a senior member of the team – and Steve has never looked back since. At the time of writing, we’ve successfully sourced a Senior Project Manager, a Database Administrator (DBA), QA and support staff, and most recently a highly rated Java Developer.

People, processes and (most important) trust

Working with Bristow Holland’s consultants has continued to be a relaxed experience, with a great relationship evolving built solidly on trust. In fact, as Steve says: “If you’re going to have a long-standing relationship, you must have trust. There might be challenging times, but you get through them together because of that.”

Trust is built on a foundation of professionalism and clear communication. A shortlist of high-calibre candidates will arrive very very quickly indeed, a sign that we already know which specialists are in the market and suitable for MCP’s role and culture. Steve enjoys being kept in the loop as we go through the sift of candidates – as he says, “They do their homework too, but in a very timely manner. I don’t have to push them.”  

MCP has adopted a best use of time practice for their interview process. First interviews are done online, and then the final one or two candidates are invited into the office, where both parties can get to know each other and establish that trust. From that point, it’s usually a very fast process – Steve and his team don’t like to hang around, and if they like and want someone they’ll move as quickly as possible to bring them on board. And we’re very happy to work with them like this, taking a proactive approach, setting a convenient start date and following up once the candidate has had a chance to settle in to see how everyone is getting on.

“Bristow Holland delivers great candidates, but also has a good nose in the marketplace for what’s coming next.”

Steve Lamb, General Manager


MCP are a pleasure to work with. Their open-minded approach and attitude to hiring enables them to attract the best talent available. Their process is simple yet highly effective and candidates always come away feeling positive about the business and opportunities, which is testament to how well the hiring managers share their vision and insights for the business.”

Matthew Foot, Director of Service Delivery

Redefining the way their company operates

Possibly the greatest impact MCP have seen across their business since working with Bristow Holland is in their processes and systems. Recruiting an experienced Project Manager brought a new focus and sense of accountability to the team, encouraging all specialists and managers to deliver. This has been great for everyone and allowed the company to scale its activity as its reach expanded.

Recruiting an expert Infrastructure Manager also brought many operational benefits. Working from the ground up within their organisation, they have redefined how MCP licences software, making Steve Lamb’s job a whole lot easier. 

But, with the pace of change at MCP, if we asked again about our biggest impact on their business in 12 months’ time, we might get a different answer. Steve has a real sense of building for the future with their recruitment, and is excited to see where the development of their industry-changing software will take them next. 

In the meantime, MCP continues to value our partnership and appreciate Bristow Holland’s casual but professional approach to doing business with clients. They feel put at ease throughout the recruitment process and know that, in the end, we’re not just here to invoice them for a fee. We’re here to help them, their new employees and their company evolve and succeed. Would Steve recommend Bristow Holland to other businesses? “Yes, absolutely.”

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