Home Bargains creating 120 jobs at new Belfast outlet

Home Bargains creating 120 jobs at new Belfast outlet

In April, Home Bargains will open a new 33,000-square-foot store in west Belfast’s Kennedy Centre, employing 120 people.

Home Discounts said it was “delighted” to serve the community and that its investment in the store would enable it to deliver “even more bargains” to west Belfast.

Despite the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic, the shopping center reported its greatest Christmas ever for 2021.

Over the holiday season, the Kennedy Center had a 24 percent increase in foot traffic compared to the prior record day, with nearly 30,000 people passing through the doors.

In addition to the new Home Bargains store, Peacocks, a bargain fashion brand, has secured a 10-year lease on its 10,000 sq ft location.
Titanic Telecommunications has also secured a five-year lease for a new office, while the popular 26 West Bar and Grill has also inked a new 10-year lease.

“We are approaching the centre’s 31st year in business on a high,” Kennedy Centre manager John Jones said of the latest results and the year ahead.

“We are delighted with the latest figures, which are testament to the fantastic offerings at the centre, and we are grateful to our loyal customers who have supported us over the years.

“Many of our retailers also reported record sales. During a turbulent time through the pandemic, the end of last year and into the start of 2022 is proving to be a really positive and encouraging time.”

Mr Jones added that there will be some “more big announcements” for the centre over the coming months.

“We have 57 businesses located at the centre and we are looking forward to seeing the offerings expand for our customers,” he stated.


This year, BT will hire 26 graduates and apprentices in Belfast

This year, BT will hire 26 graduates and apprentices in Belfast

Later this year, telecoms behemoth BT will hire 26 graduates and apprentices in Belfast.

The news is part of the company’s intentions to hire over 600 graduates and apprentices this year across the UK. For the September 2022 intake, 13 graduates and 13 apprentices are needed.

To support the UK’s fast-growing digital sectors, positions in engineering, customer service, applied research, and cyber-security will be available.

The new hires will also help the firm create and expand its 5G network across the United Kingdom.

Birmingham, Bristol, Dundee, Glasgow, Ipswich, London, and Manchester are among the cities where the new positions will be filled.

Over the last three years, the BT Group has hired over 2,000 apprentices and graduates, making it one of the largest private sector apprenticeship employers in the UK.

At any given time, the organization has roughly 4,000 employees working on their certifications.
The program, which will be completed in 2024, has already launched future-fitted, high-tech workspaces in Birmingham, London, and Warrington, where employees can interact, develop, and produce the best for BT’s clients and the company.

PJ Bowman, 23, from Belfast, is a recent local graduate who supports both BT’s placement and graduate programs.

PJ said: “I initially joined as a placement student during my degree, returning on the HR graduate programme and it was one of the best decisions that I have made.

He added: “It is such an interesting job, no two days are ever the same! It has given me so many learning opportunities to broaden my skillset with access to valuable resources that can be used for development and growth across the business.”

Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chief Executive Ann McGregor praised BT’s continuous investment in local talent.

“Providing apprentice opportunities and graduate roles which will develop digital skill-sets is exactly what we need to prepare Northern Ireland’s economy for the future,” she said.

“BT is a major employer, so we welcome this announcement and its continued long-term presence in Northern Ireland. This announcement is testament to the skills of our local workforce and BT’s confidence in it.”

Debbie White, Chief Human Resources Officer, BT Group added: “BT is at the heart of the UK’s digital economy and as one of the largest employers of graduates and apprentices in the UK, we offer unparalleled development opportunities.

800 new jobs opening in the financial and healthcare sectors

800 new jobs opening in the financial and healthcare sectors

Over 800 jobs have been announced in Northern Ireland in the financial services and healthcare industries.

Citi, Northern Ireland’s largest financial services employer, will hire more than 300 new employees, while Connected Health, an independent domiciliary care provider, will hire 500 new employees.

Citi, the only major investment bank with a presence in Belfast, employs over 3,200 employees across four locations and covers 21 different departments, including legal, HR, compliance, audit, markets, and technology.

The company has hired 1,000 new employees in the last year, and the vacancies offered this year range from apprentices and graduates to experienced employment.

“After launching our business in Belfast 16 years ago with 375 technology professionals, we are thrilled to be Northern Ireland’s largest financial services employer with over 3,200 colleagues,” said James Bardrick, head of Citi UK.

“We have been able to grow rapidly due to the incredibly deep and broad pool of talent present in Northern Ireland. A key feature of life at Citi is giving our people the opportunity to live locally but work globally, supporting our businesses around the world. We are looking forward to continuing our investment at Citi Belfast and developing our team locally.”

Leigh Meyer, site head of Citi in Belfast, said: “Every day in Belfast, our global teams interact with employees in over 100 countries processing over 600,000 transactions and supporting next-generation technology solutions for enterprise. They deliver critical services to the bank and its customers to make sure we are a stronger and safer organisation for our clients.”

Meanwhile, 500 new Connected Health positions will be paid at the London Real Living Wage rate of £11.05 per hour.

The minimum wage increase at Connected Health, according to the firm, is “a huge milestone for care workers in Northern Ireland,” which has the greatest share of non-living wage jobs (21.3 percent) of all UK regions, with almost 236,000 positions paying less than the true Living Wage. For those above the age of 25, the current government minimum wage is £8.91 per hour.

Connected Health’s head of clinical services and training, Theresa Morrison, said a new funding support package helped the homecare firm offer the higher rate.

She said: “Our hospitals are under severe pressure and increased homecare capacity in our communities provides a key solution to alleviating that pressure. As a sector, we need many more local carers working in their own communities and Connected Health is continuing to lead the drive to substantially increase staffing capacity in order to meet unprecedented and ever-growing demand.

“The Department of Health’s £23m support package to help the entire social care sector recruit and retain staff is playing a big part in our move to provide our hard-working teams with a fair wage.”