Client: intu

Brief: To recruit and develop skilled staff for intu and intu retailers.

Solution: Development of Retail Gold, a training and recruitment academy, in partnership with Jobcentre Plus that provides work ready candidates for retailers, tailored to intu’s customer service standards.

An intensive programme was designed using the college’s expertise in retail skills combined with JobCentre Plus’s employability programmes. The unique course interviews, assesses and filters candidates before going on to a three-week pre-employment training programme which was built around intu’s world class retail skills standards.

Successful candidates receive an introduction to intu’s customer services programme where they learn and refine retail and workplace skills, covering topics such as sales and service, team work, interview skills, health, safety, equality, diversity, and problem solving in a retail environment. 

Passing the course gives candidates exclusive first access to a range of job opportunities with Metrocentre and Eldon Square retailers.

“This initiative has certainly improved the calibre of potential employees and will further expand our ability to provide retailers with the right people for the right job at the right time.”

Alexander Nicoll, Corporate Responsibility Director, intu

In year 1, the programme exceeded targets and ambitions, attracting 237 participants; all of these were offered job opportunities for live vacancies. As a result, 151 people gained employment, representing an average of 64%..

Gateshead College has extended the pre-employment strand of Retail Gold to include hospitality training, to meet the needs of this growing group of retailers within the two shopping centres.