Portmeirion’s story began in 1960 when the founders opened the door to Portmeirion Pottery in Stoke-On-Trent.  Futuristic designs put Portmeirion on the map; they were innovative and ahead of their time. Today, they continue to move with fashion and trends but always with the same philosophy; to make beautiful high-quality products with timeless style.

Signature’s relationship with Portmeirion began in 2019 when Gemma Copping (Marketing Director) joined the business to transform the marketing strategy and direction.  She followed a new CEO who joined earlier that year who had a new agenda for the business making it an incredibly exciting time to be a part of the organization. Signature have held a relationship with Gemma for many years working with her as both a client and a candidate and built a relationship on a solid foundation of trust.  On joining Portmeirion, Gemma called on Signature once again to support her in developing her marketing team.

The Challenge

Portmeirion had always been a sales-led business; strategic marketing was a new concept to them.  This is where Gemma came in bringing a fresh agenda with her broader FMCG background.  The challenge she faced was working with the wider business to transform them from one which was sales-led to marketing-led, with an added focus on digital and online marketing.  The business already had a solid footing and were performing well delivering YOY growth; the new strategy was to build on this and take Portmeirion to the next level.

Gemma set about understanding what was needed to make the changes that were necessary and worked with the Signature team to brief them on the needs of the business. This included developing a new digital marketing team, in effect bringing their capability in-house.


Portmeirion had a number of roles they wanted to recruit and wanted this to be handled by a consultancy who had the network and know-how to reach, attract, and secure the appropriate prospective candidates.  The hires were also being made in the middle of 2020 which was a particularly challenging year to hire in for a number of reasons. Global circumstances had meant that demand for digital marketing talent was in high demand but short supply which created an extremely competitive environment for recruiting in this sector, and candidates were still reluctant to leave the safety of their current employment given the economic uncertainty.  It was therefore even more important that these appointments got handled in the right way, in a timely manner and with passion, pace and a right-first-time approach.

Due to Signature’s specialist knowledge of FMCG, CPG and Marketing, this meant we were perfectly positioned to support Portmeirion and to take a thorough and passionate approach which would allow us to reach the talent required.  Our authenticity and industry insight enabled us to cut through the noise of the market and afforded us the time with candidates to effectively position the changes at Portmeirion and the opportunities this presented.

Signature worked hand-in-hand with Gemma to understand her needs and set about developing a plan of action to appoint four key roles:

  • Content Executive
  • SEO Specialist
  • Social Media Specialist
  • Digital Marketing Executive


Signature’s specialist FMCG and CPG knowledge enabled Portmeirion to build the team in a timely manner and attract the right people into the roles, successfully placing all four appointments.

Less than 12 months later the digital team was expanded and Signature were also appointed to support Portmeirion in hiring an Email Marketing Executive.


Working with a specialist consultancy enables you to reach the passive marketplace.  A recruitment consultancy who understands the industry that you operate in, as well as the intricacies of the channels and disciplines, but also has an active network within that industry, will be able to move at pace with the credibility to talk to those ‘hard to reach’ prospective candidates to bring your brand and opportunity to life.  In a candidate-led market where talent is in high demand and short supply, you need to ensure you get it right first time. Working on an exclusive basis with a partner you trust will enable you to build a recruiter relationship that can deliver the results you need.

Gemma and her team were incredibly busy and they didn’t need any extra pressure which can come from a poorly handled recruitment campaign.  Due to Signature’s specialist expertise, we were able to create a highly effective campaign which delivered timely results and enabled Gemma and her wider team to get on with transforming the marketing agenda at Portmeirion whilst Signature handled the recruitment.