Jen Devlin - A Life in the Day - Laurence Simons

Jen Devlin – A Life in the Day.

Jen Devlin

Jen Devlin is Chief People Officer of Laurence Simons.


Jen leads the H.R. team to drive Laurence Simons’ commercial success by providing a first-class employee experience.


In this instalment of ‘Life in the Day’, Jen shares her average day, interests, and hobbies.

What is your daily morning routine?


I take my morning coffee and go for a walk in the park next to my house, or go out for a riverside cycle. I use the time to mentally prepare for the day ahead. I often think about what I’m grateful for, any upcoming plans I’m excited about, what I can do to stay calm and centred throughout the day.   



rooftop london office laurence simons

What is your Laurence Simons office like?

I love our offices by Cannon Street station. There’s a beautiful view of St Paul’s at the end of the street (my favourite London Landmark). We’re surrounded by great café’s, pubs and restaurants, the atmosphere is always buzzing and it’s great to have a rooftop terrace.

How did you come to be a Chief People Officer at Laurence Simons?


After graduating with a law degree, I was unsure what I wanted from my career. I spent a year in Australia, working to fund my travels, and decided to go into recruitment when I returned to the UK, already knowing I wanted to live in New Zealand and that UK-trained recruiters were in high demand. I also trained as a life coach. In New Zealand I had my first exposure to HR working as legal & HR project support on a major rail project. When I returned to the UK I joined a music industry start-up as EA to the COO and went for an internal promotion when their newly-appointed HR Manager left. It felt like a great fit to be in a role where I could draw on my legal background and coaching skills. I loved being in a role where I could influence the culture and transform the employee experience. I then worked with Laurence Simons when I joined FiveTen Group as Global Head of HR, and continued to provide HR Consulting services post-MBO. I joined as CPO in October 2021, at an exciting time of change for Laurence Simons, inspired by their vision, growth strategy and values, their championing of diversity and inclusion and their focus on employee wellbeing. 



What does your role encompass?


My role has a broad strategic remit centred around culture and engagement, equity, diversity and inclusion, reward and recognition, resourcing, and learning and development. I lead the HR function to drive Laurence Simons’ commercial success by providing a first-class employee experience.



What projects are you currently working on?


Current projects include the rollout of a new appraisal system, competency framework and career paths, building on the work our culture project team delivered last year to embed our newly-defined behaviours and values, and reviewing our Management training.


Who do you work most closely with?


Emma Cox, our brilliant HR Consultant. Also, Clare, our CEO and Carrie, our consultant CFO. We’ve also recently brought Natalia onboard as PA/Office Manager, which is a fantastic support to my role.

laurence simons team photo social

What do you enjoy about your work?

It’s a privilege to work with a team of such inspiring, ambitious and brilliant people, and it’s exciting to work within such a courageous and agile business, unafraid of making huge changes.

How do you socialise with the team?

We have various social club nights out in London.

jen devlin wild swimming

How do you spend time out of work, and what are your main hobbies and passions?

Travelling and wild swimming are my main passions in life. My partner is Austrian and I have family in Scotland and New Zealand so we do a lot of travelling between those locations as well as visiting new places whenever we can.

What are you currently looking forward to?

A trip to Amsterdam for my dad’s 70th this weekend with my brother and sister.

Can you tell us a little more about the city you live in?


London is such an incredible place to live. I originally moved here from New Zealand because my brother and his wife were starting a family and I wanted to be close by. The idea of London life didn’t particularly appeal, especially after seven years in Auckland, where I really couldn’t have been happier. However, the experience has far exceeded my expectations. I love living near the river in Greenwich. The amazing parks and green spaces. The galleries and theatres. The restaurants and bars. The unique and varied events. The nearby beaches and towns, and that every time you move to a different part of London it’s like moving to an entirely different city, because each place has its own character and culture.


 Do you have any recommendations?


Greenwich market, the V&A and British Museum, Hyde Park, Richmond Park and getting out on the river.


See Jen's profile on our website