#ContactCentreYES delivers real jobs for the Illawarra – Shoalhaven region
Illawarra Youth Employment Strategy (#IllawarraYES), a 12-month pilot program, which was launched in July 2016 as an initiative between the NSW Government, Industry NGO’s and employment services, has produced its first work ready graduates in the contact centre industry.
The aim and intention of the #ContactCentreYES program was to provide young people aged 17 - 24 with work experience and training in the contact centre industry, which is a major employer in Wollongong and across the Illawarra-Shoalhaven region.
The #ContactCentreYes program was developed by Auscontact Association - the peak body representing contact centres across Australia - and delivered by training organisation TAFE NSW, with the participation of volunteers from Auscontact and local businesses providing the onsite work placement training. The organisations involved were Illawarra Smart Centre (Department of Human Services), Medibank AHM, University of Wollongong, SkyDive the Beach, Peoplecare, IRT and NEC.
Ten out of the original class of 11 graduated with a partial Certification I in Customer Engagement and 50% of those graduates were employed by the end of training. The remaining 50% have been invited to apply for specific positions.
Mrs Fiona Keough, Chief Executive Officer, Auscontact Association, is delighted with this success. “It is great to see the program has delivered tangible employment outcomes and it’s certainly something we’d like to see continue and grow to other areas. I want to particularly commend all the businesses and members of our Association that provided workplace experience and a special mention to key member volunteers, Rebecca Dickinson (University of Wollongong), Tory Macri (Peoplecare), and Dot Hennessy (Choices & Challenges) who really drove its success on the ground,” said Mrs Keough.
TAFE NSW Regional General Manager Kerry Penton said the training provider is pleased the program is making a positive impact on the lives and careers of graduates.
“The combination of training with real world practical industry experience gives students the chance to apply their learning, build skills and confidence and enhance their understanding of the contact centre industry. We wish them all the best with their future careers,” said Ms Penton.