Alistair Cox

CEO of Hays plc, the leading global professional recruiting group

Alistair graduated in Aeronautical Engineering in 1982 from The University of Salford, UK and commenced his career at British Aerospace in the military aircraft division. In 1983, he moved to the oil and gas industry as a Field Engineer with Schlumberger, working extensively in the Norwegian sector of the North Sea. During his career with Schlumberger, Alistair worked in a number of roles covering Well Site Engineering and Operational Management across several locations in Europe. In 1988, he moved to the USA as a Research Scientist at the Schlumberger corporate research and development laboratory in Connecticut, USA, where he was responsible for the development of advanced technologies to service the oil industry.

In 1991, he completed his Masters in Business Administration at The Graduate School of Business, Stanford University, California and returned to the UK as a consultant for McKinsey & Co. His experience at McKinsey & Co covered a number of sectors including energy, consumer goods and manufacturing. He moved to Blue Circle Industries in 1994 as Group Strategy Director, responsible for all aspects of strategic planning and international investments for the group. During this time, Blue Circle re-focused its business upon heavy building material in a number of new markets and in 1998, Alistair assumed the role of Regional Director responsible for Blue Circle’s operations in Asia, based in Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia. He was responsible for businesses in Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, Indonesia and Vietnam. Subsequent to the acquisition of Blue Circle by Lafarge in 2001, he also assumed responsibility for Lafarge’s operations in the region as Regional President for Asia. In 2002, Alistair returned to the UK as CEO of Xansa, a UK based IT services and back-office processing organisation. During his 5 year tenure at Xansa, he re-focused the organisation to create a UK leading provider of back-office services across both the Public and Private sector and built one of the strongest offshore operations in the sector with over 6,000 people based in India.

In September 2007, Alistair moved to Hays plc as Chief Executive.

Alistair joined the board of 3i Group plc as a non-executive director on 1 October 2009.