Vodafone to create 250 jobs at Stoke-on-Trent call centre
MORE than 250 jobs are being created at Vodafone's Stoke-on-Trent call centre.
Vodafone has started recruiting staff for the roles at its multi-million pound site in Etruria Valley.
It comes as the firm is shutting two call centre operations in Berkshire and Wiltshire.
Employees from both centres can apply for the Etruria Valley jobs – but most of the positions are expected to go to people in North Staffordshire.
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The Etruria Valley call centre already employs 900 staff.
Simon Gold, operations manager at the Stoke-on-Trent site, said: "We are creating around 250 jobs as part of a transition of work.
"It is a big boost for our Etruria site and shows our commitment to the area."
Jobs on offer include £14,000-a-year posts for customer service advisers and £18,000 team leaders jobs.
The new staff will deal with the firm's core corporate customers, which include several banks and public sector firms.
The first batch of new recruits are expected to start work next month after undergoing training.
Mr Gold added: "We don't necessarily look for previous call-taking or call centre skills.
"What we really want is people who are customer-focussed, go the extra mile when serving customers and enjoy talking to customers on a day-to-day basis."
An open day has already been held for job-seekers to find out more about the roles.
Laura Boulton, aged 20, of Birches Head, who currently operates rides at Alton Towers, said: "Shifts at Alton Towers are quite late during the summer, so I am hoping to get a team leader job at Vodafone instead. It will also be a step up for me in terms of customer service jobs."
JD Wetherspoon worker James Barrett, aged 21, also from Birches Head, said: "I'm interested in a job in customer services.
"Vodafone is a big, well-known company, with opportunities for me to progress."
Stoke-on-Trent Central MP Tristram Hunt today welcomed the new jobs having previously met Vodafone's head of corporate affairs.
He said: "These jobs are a very good thing for the city and a welcome boost.
"Vodafone is a top-flight British company. Its head of corporate affairs was telling me that Stoke-on-Trent is leading the company in terms of what it is doing at its call centre.
"The jobs will provide opportunities for people who are unemployed and address our unemployment rate."
Latest figures show 11,344 people claimed Jobseeker's Allowance across North Staffordshire in May.