A training and employment programme is set to give more than 200 people in the Birmingham area the opportunity to retrain and secure full-time work.
The jobs initiative is part of a partnership between Birmingham-based call centre outsourcing specialist Sigma Financial and BMet College, Birmingham City Council and JobCentre Plus.
Funded by the West Midlands Combined Authority, it will give unemployed people the chance to learn new skills for free and have the opportunity to join Sigma, with 15 candidates trained and assessed every month between January and July.
The sector-based work academy partnership originally began in 2015 and has since seen over 1,000 trainees come through the programme with 625 starting new call centre and customer advisor roles at Sigma.
BusinessLive is your home for business news from around the country – and you can stay in touch with all the latest news through our email alerts.
You can sign up to receive daily morning news bulletins from every region we cover and to weekly email bulletins covering key economic sectors from manufacturing to technology and enterprise. And we’ll send out breaking news alerts for any stories we think you can’t miss.
Visit our email preference centre to sign up to all the latest news from BusinessLive.
Jo Regan-Iles, group people officer at Sigma, said: “We’ve enjoyed a really successful partnership over the past five years and this latest jobs and training drive is yet another milestone.
“The covid-19 pandemic has played a role in seeing around 200,000 people unemployed across the West Midlands and so this programme aims to help push that number down, give people new skills and kickstart new careers.
“We’ve already seen hundreds of people join us through the programme and many of those have worked their way up through the organisation into supervisory or management roles.
There are so many stand-out stars and over the next seven months we look forward to taking on the next group of talented people who want to reset their careers, reskill or get back into work.”
BMet’s vice-principal of external development Suzie Branch-Haddow added: “Sector-based work academy programmes can really provide businesses with a unique, risk-free, recruitment channel.
“By working in close partnership with Sigma, we’ve been able to ensure that the training content is tailored to their business culture, systems and processes allowing candidates to get a real feel for the organisation and vice-versa.”