FirstPort has made two senior appointments to its HR leadership team that will enhance every aspect of their employees’ experience.

Emma Smith has joined FirstPort as Head of Talent. She brings with her a wealth of experience working at an international level within Tesco, coordinating the resource and recruitment processes across five different countries. She also has vast experience of large-scale culture change programmes from her time working at both Tesco and more recently, Camelot.

Emma will be responsible for creating a joined-up employee experience from recruitment, learning and development and talent planning. She will also provide strategic focus to the organisation’s leadership programmes and the array of learning and development opportunities such as the highly-acclaimed Concierge Academy and Digital Eagles initiative.

Speaking of her appointment, Emma said:

“I am truly impressed by how many talented and committed people there are working for FirstPort. A key focus for me is to look at how we make best use of the behaviours, skills and experience our colleagues have that make this business really special. This will enable us to achieve our ambitious business goals whilst also enriching our colleagues’ experiences.”


Emma Smith, Head of Talent.

Craig Rowe has been appointed as Head of HR. He brings with him an in-depth senior level experience of customer-focused industries, leading managerial training programmes at Morrisons, and the HR related to a major acquisition at Iceland. He also worked in strategic HR positions for disability charity, Scope and restaurant chains Benugo, Cosmo and Wagamama.  

Craig will be responsible for ensuring each and every employee has an excellent experience and receives the right support through a credible HR service,  enhanced by innovative HR systems, practices and processes. He will also focus on employee engagement to ensure FirstPort remains a great place to work and supports business objectives. 

Speaking of his appointment, Craig said:

“From my retail and hospitality experience, I have seen the direct impact good HR can have on customers. Engaged, supported and motivated colleagues  are the key to having a high performing, loyal and happy workforce. It also gives you the ability to innovate and grow as a business, and I look forward to helping enhance FirstPort’s status as a Top Employer  and seeing our colleagues and the business flourish as a result.”


Craig Rowe, Head of HR