Hosting firm offers new hires £1000 to leave

A thousand pounds to leave the company after only two weeks in the job

A thousand pounds to leave the company after only two weeks in the job.

That is what Rackspace UK founder Dominic Monkhouse is offering people who join his latest network and web hosting service, Southampton-based Peer 1, but find they do not fit in.

Monkhouse, who has christened the pay off the "Foxtrot Oscar" award, told Computer Weekly that his experience in several start-up and business-building ventures had taught him that new hires know within two weeks whether they are in the right place.

"I am looking for people who 'get' customer service," he said. "They must really really want to make the customer's problem their own and be committed to fixing it as soon as humanly possible."

Reacting to a suggestion that his offer to pay people £1,000 to leave in the present recession could attract a lot of chancers, Monkhouse said, "I know it is a buyers' market, but I am fairly confident our hiring protocol will weed out the worst of them."

He said Peer 1 asks candidates to draw a picture of something that motivates them, and then asks them questions about what they have drawn.

"It is a bit unusual, but then we want exceptional people," he said. "Besides, we also have a Cock-up of the Month award. If I hire some scallys, I guess I will be up for it. It would not be the first time," he said.

Monkhouse's operation is the EMEA end of Canadian-based hosting firm Peer 1, which has £100m sales and 300 staff. Monkhouse is looking for 50 people over the next year to grow the EMEA business from the present 550 customers, 200 of which are in the UK.

Read more on IT jobs and recruitment