SUNDERLAND youngsters are the first in the country to be given a new call centre learning tool.
The new resource pack has been created to highlight the work of the city’s contact centre industry and to promote career opportunities within it.
Launched at Thornhill School, the resource will be used by pupils across the city to gain an insight into the range of work that goes on in contact centres, which employ about 10,000 people in Sunderland.
The sector also contributes more than £170million a year to the local economy in salaries alone, making Sunderland one of the leading contact centre locations in the world.
The new pack combines modules which teachers can deliver to pupils in a lesson format, as well as a DVD and booklet which will give a behind-the-scenes look at the role contact centres play and the work they do.
Schoolchildren will also be able to use contact centre simulation equipment to get a feel for the role.
John Hallworth, headteacher at Thornhill, said: “Working with our students, we have created a resource which will help young people across the city to consider their career options within an industry that is so valuable to Sunderland.
“We’re very pleased to have been able to develop the pack and hope students across the city will find much benefit from it.”
The initiative is supported and funded by Sunderland City Council’s business investment team alongside More Than and EDF Energy, both of which have major contact centre operations on the city’s Doxford Park.
The packs have been developed by Thornhill School, which worked alongside its students to create a resource they felt was accessible and relevant.
Councillor Graeme Miller, cabinet member of Sunderland City Council, said: “The contact centre industry is massively important to Sunderland, as both a city and an economy, and we are committed to helping it grow and prosper in future years through encouraging more talented people to follow career paths within the sector.
“The contact centre learning resource packs offer an original, smart tool to help achieve that, and will show young people in our city how valuable a career choice it can be.”