Farry launches pilot Customer Engagement Specialist Academy

Wednesday, March 02, 2016

Employment and Learning Minister Dr Stephen Farry today launched the pilot Customer Engagement Specialist Academy.

The Academy will provide up to 20 individuals with the skills and experience required to take up exciting new roles with either Power NI or Firstsource Solutions Ltd in their contact centres.

Minister Farry said: "This pilot Customer Engagement Specialist Academy will provide the specialist skills required by these two businesses within their contact centres and provide participants with the skills required to develop a career path in this sector." 

"Academies such as these clearly show how my department, through the Assured Skills Initiative, the Business Institute Ulster University and the private sector can respond quickly to business needs. This demonstrates how government interventions such as developing a bespoke training programme are providing local employers with highly skilled staff to meet their growing business needs." 

The Academy will provide an intensive five week pre-employment training and a four week work placement with either Firstsource Solutions Ltd or Power NI.

Michael McQuillan, Director, Business Institute, Ulster University commented: "The opportunity to develop a training programme that focuses on an improved skills framework in the contact centre industry is particularly timely. Since 2012 Ulster University Business School has been working with strategic partners through the delivery of an accredited industry degree programme. The university is keen to work in this responsive way with government and business to deliver impact for individuals, their organisation, their community and the economy."

The Academy has been designed by the Business Institute, Ulster University, in conjunction with Firstsource Solutions Ltd and Power NI with support from the Department for Employment and Learning, under the Assured Skills initiative.

Ashleigh Best, HR Business partner, Power NI, said: "As Northern Ireland's leading electricity company we are committed to providing an exceptional customer service through our people. Therefore we are delighted to be involved in this exciting opportunity to recruit new talent into our contact centres and to be able to offer them a career beyond the traditional advisor roles."

Laura Hourican, VP - Human Resources, Firstsource Solutions Ltd commented: "Firstsource are delighted to be involved in this great partnership opportunity, offering a skills development programme to encourage more individuals to build life-long careers in the Contact Centre industry."

Applications to the pilot Customer Engagement Specialist Academy will open on Wednesday 2 March 2016 and close at 4pm on Friday 18 March 2016. The training programme for successful applicants will commence on 9 May 2016 at Ulster University, Jordanstown campus.

For more information or to submit an application visit https://cesa.mindmill.co.uk/