Peterborough employers in scramble to fill growing numbers of vacancies

Employers in Peterborough are ‘crying out’ for help to find staff to fill an abundance of vacancies as businesses bounce back from lockdown closures.

Wednesday, 16th June 2021, 6:40 am

Leading companies from all sectors have teamed up with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) as they search out new ways of filling a rapidly growing number of work opportunities.

While direct recruitment is still one option for employers, many are involved in various industry-specific training schemes that teach potential staff the skills they will need in a new workplace from the first day.

And to ensure employers and job seekers get the help they need to match up, the DWP will today (Wednesday) open a new Jobcentre at Northminster House, in Northminster Road.

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Lidl in Peterborough is recruiting staff.  EMN-210219-114922009
Lidl in Peterborough is recruiting staff. EMN-210219-114922009

When fully operational, the centre will be the base for 87 members of staff.

The DWP has signed a three year lease for use of the building, which will also support the current Jobcentre at Peterborough Town Hall.

A DWP spokesperson said: “There is no shortage of jobs. Industry is really opening up.

“Employers are crying out for people to fill their vacancies.

Clipper warehouse at Ivatt Way, Westwood EMN-200312-170846009

“If people really want a job there is no reason why they should not find one. There are plenty of good solid jobs on offer.

She added: “But it could well be that people will have to change industries and learn new skills to get another job.

“For instance as a result of the pandemic and the lack of travel, a taxi driver might opt to work with fresh produce growers.

“Our pre-employment training is for people of all ages and at least 80 per cent of people who complete the courses will get hired.

The IKEA distribution centre at Kingston Park, Peterborough.

“Our new centre ensures people can come in and speak to staff face-to-face and engage with employers as we match people to jobs.”

Companies looking to hire in Peterborough include supermarket chain Lidl, which has more than 10 vacancies for store assistants, there are a further 10 plus vacancies at fresh produce supplier AM Fresh, at Peterborough Gateway, and MM Flowers, in Huntingdon, and Peterborough’s Betfred has more than five vacancies.

Ready-to-assemble furniture retailer IKEA, in Peterborough, is taking on eight recruits through the Kickstart scheme, which provides work training for 16 to 24-year-olds.

There are also a number of Sector-based Work Academy Programmes (SWAPS) in place through which people learn the skills and behaviours required for specific employers.

The spokesperson said: “Placements are designed to help claimants build confidence to improve their job prospects and enhance their CV, whilst helping employers in sectors with current local vacancies to fill them.”

A Health and Care Sector Work Academy run by City College Peterborough has an array of employers waiting to select new staff completing the course.

There are three separate SWAPS running for warehousing with delivery giant Hermes, supermarket chain Lidl and logistics operator Clipper, which has premises in Ivatt Way, Westwood, lined up to hire staff.

Construction specialists the Wates Group will take candidates from a construction SWAP.

A course for store assistant positions will include a customer service level 2 qualification tailored with input directly from Lidl’s HR department.

In addition, there will be ongoing SWAP courses for the hospitality industry as it recovers after lockdown.

Maintenance work on Peterborough’s roads is always needed and traffic management specialists Amberon is planning a Kickstart course for 18 to 24-year-olds.

If you are looking for work, visit https://gov.uk/jobhelp to find your next new role.

In addition, Cambridge & Peterborough Combined Authority has a Talent Portal to support employers, jobseekers and those wanting to develop their skills.

It can be visited at: https://cambridgeshirepeterborough-ca.gov.uk/news/growth-works-with-skills-launches-new-online-platform-to-support-employers-learners-and-workers/

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