Friday, 12 Jul 2024

Mannie Neville: Resourcing and Talent Manager, The FA

Mannie Neville is the Resourcing and Talent Manager for The Football Association (FA). With extensive experience and knowledge in recruitment, Mannie joined the FA in November 2018, bringing his lifelong passion for football to the industry. In a recent interview, Mannie sheds light on the importance of data in the recruitment process and shares insight into the FA’s commitment to diversity with the implementation of The Football Leadership Diversity Code.

How it all started

Mannie’s journey into the football industry began when he joined the FA in 2018. Prior to this role, Mannie had a successful career in recruitment, but his love for football made the opportunity to work in the industry too good to pass up. He applied for the position and went through a rigorous interview process, ultimately securing the role as Resourcing and Talent Manager. Mannie’s passion for the game and his recruitment expertise made him a perfect fit for the FA.

Wembley Stadium

The Role of Resourcing & Talent Manager

As the Resourcing and Talent Manager, Mannie is responsible for managing the end-to-end recruitment process at the FA. From attracting candidates to assessing and selecting the right fit for each role, Mannie ensures that the FA recruits the best talent. This encompasses all divisions within the FA, including Wembley Stadium and the National Football Centre at St. George’s Park, where national teams and coaching qualifications are based.

St. George's Park

The FA’s Approach to Resourcing and Developing Talent

The FA believes in merit-based recruitment, focusing on the capability and demands of each role. With a wide range of divisions and opportunities, the FA actively seeks to attract a diverse talent pool, both within and outside of the football industry. While some positions require football expertise, there are numerous roles where experience from other industries can be valuable. The FA values inclusivity and aims to foster a culture that embraces new perspectives and shared values.

Adapting to the Pandemic

Like many organizations, the FA had to adapt its recruitment process due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Mannie and his team made use of technology, such as video interviews, to continue the recruitment process remotely. While the use of technology has been essential, Mannie acknowledges the challenges of building relationships through screens. He looks forward to the return of face-to-face interactions, especially in a people-oriented role like his.

The Importance of Data in Resourcing

Data plays a crucial role in the FA’s resourcing process. It helps track and monitor various aspects of recruitment, from Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion to the performance of attraction channels and the overall candidate experience. The FA uses data analysis to identify progress, challenges, and opportunities for improvement. Data-driven insights inform decision-making and contribute to the ongoing development of effective recruitment strategies.

The Football Leadership Diversity Code

The FA recently introduced The Football Leadership Diversity Code, a project aimed at promoting diversity and equality within the football industry. The code, established through collaboration between key figures within football, sets recruitment pledges and targets to drive positive change. It represents a collective commitment from the football industry to increase diversity and create equal opportunities at all levels. The code is expected to have a significant impact on the industry and society as a whole.

Industry Reaction to the Diversity Code

Although the code is still new, there has been a positive reaction from the football industry. Many clubs and partners have committed to the code, demonstrating their intent to improve and hold themselves accountable. The code has sparked conversations and collaborations, emphasizing the importance of working together to address challenges and share success stories. Progress will take time and effort, but the industry is committed to driving change.

The Future of Resourcing and Talent Management in Football

Talent management will continue to be crucial in the football industry. Having the right people in the right roles is essential for achieving success on and off the pitch. Technology will play a significant role, enabling more efficient and effective recruitment processes. Integration of recruitment, HR, and learning platforms will provide valuable data and insights. The assessment process will become more sophisticated, driven in part by the new diversity code. Managing performance and addressing Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion will remain key priorities.

Mannie’s Advice and Experience at the FA

Mannie advises those aspiring to work in the football industry to explore all the opportunities available. The industry offers diverse roles that contribute to the game’s success and have a positive impact on society and local communities. He emphasizes that a background in football is not always necessary, as the industry welcomes individuals with different perspectives and valuable experiences from other fields. Mannie expresses his satisfaction with working at the FA, acknowledging the organization’s inclusive and supportive culture. He emphasizes the FA’s commitment to making a difference in the game and continues to be excited about the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How does the FA approach resourcing and developing talent?
The FA embraces merit-based recruitment, considering the requirements of each role and aiming to attract a diverse talent pool. They value both football expertise and experience from other industries, creating a culture that is inclusive and values driven.

Q: How has the pandemic affected the FA’s recruitment process?
The pandemic forced the FA to adapt their recruitment process. They made use of video interviews and other technology to continue the process remotely. While technology has been essential, it has also presented challenges in building relationships.

Q: Why is data important in the FA’s resourcing process?
Data provides valuable insights into the recruitment process, including the performance of attraction channels, candidate experience, and progress in Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion. It informs decision-making and helps identify areas for improvement.

Q: What is The Football Leadership Diversity Code?
The Football Leadership Diversity Code is a commitment from the football industry to increase diversity and equality at all levels. It sets recruitment pledges and targets to drive positive change. The code has received positive reactions from the industry, with clubs and partners showing intent to improve and hold themselves accountable.


Mannie Neville’s role as the Resourcing and Talent Manager at the FA highlights the importance of effective recruitment and diversity in the football industry. The FA’s commitment to merit-based recruitment, data-driven decision-making, and the implementation of The Football Leadership Diversity Code showcases their dedication to creating equal opportunities for all. As the industry continues to evolve, talent management and diversity will remain integral to its success. Mannie’s experience at the FA exemplifies the organization’s positive impact on the game and its ongoing dedication to progress. To learn more about the FA, visit Zerobertooficial.