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Tyneside HR firm invests in training programme for regional graduates

HR and employment law advice firm, HR Dept Newcastle has unveiled its first graduate trainee as part of its long-term drive to invest in the region's young talent.

The company, which has just celebrated its fourth birthday, has also said it will look to double its headcount from four to eight in the next 18 months.

Led by its director and owner, Jayne Hart has hired University of Sunderland graduate Emma-Leigh Miller, pledging to actively recruit further graduates to help fulfil its ambitious growth plans.

Business graduate, Emma-Leigh, who applied for a position through the university's graduation scheme, will now undergo a 12-month full-time intensive training programme at HR Dept with the view of becoming a full-time HR advisor at the firm.

Speaking about HR Dept's latest recruit, Jayne Hart, said: "It was always part of my business growth plan to have a mix of employees who were experienced HR professionals alongside graduate trainees.

"For me, having the HR expertise, whilst incredibly important, is only part of the package. It is equally important to have the right fit with our HR Dept values and behaviours and what better way to do this than grow our own?

"Emma stood out because she had a business degree and also has practical HR experience through working at Greggs and Caterpillar.

"We are very practical and pragmatic at The HR Dept and Emma demonstrates this ability. Our business is built on the strength of our local relationships and our straight forward advice so this is a very important quality for me. We can't wait for her to get started."

During HR Dept's in-house training programme, Emma will cover HR and employment law delivery and will also get grips with the company's approach to marketing.

Commenting on her commitment to recruiting more graduates in the region and her aspirations for her latest member of staff, Jayne Hart continued: "We are part of a network of 100 HR Depts across the UK so Emma will have the opportunity to mix with other HR Advisors in the network.

"Her role will be very diverse as we cover so many aspects of employing staff, so she may be leading on a recruitment one moment and then supporting a disciplinary the next.

"It is hard to forge a career as a graduate with minimal experience. HR jobs tend to require lots of experience and how on earth do you get that experience if you are not given a chance.

"This is my first graduate recruitment, but as the business grows, it is my plan to have more. The North East is very buoyant at the minute. We have the advanced manufacturing park opening on our doorstep, a vibrant tech sector emerging and many businesses with scale up or growth ambition. The future is looking bright for our company."

Councillor John Anglin, lead member for regeneration and economy at South Tyneside Council, added: "One of our key priorities is boosting businesses and job opportunities as set out in our strategic vision for the Borough.

"Therefore it is wonderful to see a local company flourishing in this way and offering training opportunities for graduates."