[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

Nineteen Recruits told ‘you’re hired’ at finale.

Nineteen young people heard the magic words of ‘you’re hired’ at a ceremony to mark the conclusion of a popular council youth employment programme.

The group are looking forward to their new careers after taking part in The Recruit – loosely based on TV’s Apprentice – which sees young people compete through a series of business-based and practical challenges.

DSC_6529

Now in its fifth year, this year’s summer installment had two groups – one featuring 30 S5/6 school pupils, and another with 17 unemployed young people aged 18 to 24.

The Recruits were joined by family, friends and supporters of the programme for a finale and awards ceremony at Paisley Town Hall, hosted by DJ George Bowie.

On the night, two Recruits were named as Top Recruits for their performance over the six-week programme – Jonathan McCart and Erin Cairns.

Erin, 16, of Johnstone, said: “The Recruit was amazing, a once-in-a-lifetime experience. It isn’t just about getting a job, it’s about confidence-building.

“I now feel like a different person – I am much more confident about talking to people and so much more positive.”

Jonathan, 17 of Linwood, added: “This is completely brilliant, I didn’t expect it at all.”

The Recruits’s Choice awards – voted for by their colleagues as the people who made the biggest impact – went to John Shields and Daniel Gronan.

The young people also presented a cheque for £4,122 to St Vincent’s Hospice, for whom they had raised funds over the course of the programme.

The successful Recruits were invited up on stage one-by-one as their new bosses announced employment opportunities at nine private-sector firms.

They were: Blaze Driessen, Martin Ruddy and Sarah Richford (Marks and Spencer); Erin Cairns, Jonathan McCart and Ryan Connelly (Kinder Handl); Wendy Thomson (Little Flowers Nursery); Mark McNicholl (Muir Slicer); Stuart Armstrong (Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce); Charles Fraser (Ecosse Furnishings); Stuart Murphy (Rainbow Technologies); Stephen Howie (BGL Contracts) and Steven Fallon (It’s all Food).

A further four were taken on by Renfrewshire Council – Declan Hamilton, Connie Lamb, Imaan Niven and Christopher Duffin, while Colleen McParland and Daniel Gronan received posts at Renfrewshire Leisure.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan helped present the awards, and said: “Once again, Renfrewshire has produced a batch of Recruits who are a credit to themselves and to the area.

“Although the Recruit has been running for five years now, this is the most job opportunities ever to be handed out in one night – which shows the extent to which the programme is now established among the local business community.

“Creating opportunities for people to find work is one of the biggest priorities of this council and through our Invest in Renfrewshire programme – of which the Recruit is part – we have created jobs for almost 600 young people in just over two years.

“But we couldn’t run this programme without the support – in many cases, long-running support – of the firms who have created job opportunities, provided sponsorship for the finale, and offered time and expertise to run Recruit tasks.

“My thanks go to every one of them, and I am sure they would join me in wishing the Recruits all the best for the adventure that lies ahead.”

The finale event was kindly sponsored by Scottish Leather Group, intu Braehead, Linstone Housing Association, Hillington Park Innovation Centre and Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

Recruits are just the jobs for charity

A group of 30 young people from a popular council-run youth employment programme rattled their tins to raise hundreds of pounds for a local charity.

The S5/6 youngsters on the Recruit programme – loosely based on TV’s The Apprentice – raised the cash for St Vincent’s Hospice by taking collection cans and buckets across Braehead shopping centre.

Recruits charity collection Braehead

Every year, the organisers of The Recruit – which sees a group of young people compete through a series of business-based challenges with jobs on offer for the winners – choose a local charity to benefit from the young people’s work.

St Vincent’s will also benefit from a challenge where the Recruits will be asked to see how much money they can earn on an initial £1 investment from the charity.

Other activities taking place include bake sales, sponsored walks and runs and other charity fundraisers. The results will be announced at the Recruit finale on 18 August where all of the funds raised will be presented to St Vincent’s.

The Recruit is now in its fifth year and this summer’s programme has two sections, one for S5/6 school pupils and another for unemployed 18 to 24-year-olds.

Donna McLellan, community and trust fundraiser at St Vincent’s, supervised the Braehead challenge, and said: “The Recruits were wonderful ambassadors for St Vincent’s and they did a fantastic job.

recruits charity collection Braehead

“They had loads of energy and enthusiasm and that was reflected in the way they persuaded the public to contribute to the charity.

“It costs us £5,000 a day to run our charity and half of this comes from voluntary donations.

“Public fundraising can be tough and fundraisers have to be good-humoured and versatile. The Recruits showed they have what it takes.”

Councillor Roy Glen, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Economy and Jobs Policy Board, added: “The Recruit aims to equip our young people with skills that will benefit them in the workplace by giving them practical and business-based challenges.

“Every year we find another batch of young people who go on to do the area proud – and it is great to see them applying those skills by doing something that helps benefit a great cause like St Vincent’s.”

Courtesy of Renfrewshire Council.[/vc_column_text][vc_separator icon=”star”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

Recruits shine during social media chat

A group of young people on a council-run youth employment programme were given the chance to get social after a masterclass with a Facebook expert.

The 30 S5 and 6 pupils on the latest edition of The Recruit were set a series of tasks by Gary Ennis of Hillington-based firm NS Design as their latest business challenge.

Recruits with NS design

The Recruit is loosely based on TV’s The Apprentice and sees young people compete through a series of enterprise challenges, with jobs on offer for the winners.

Gary talked the youngsters through the pros and cons of using social media as a business before asking them to set up a business Facebook profile and see how many ‘likes’ they could pick up before the end of the day.

The overall winners on the day were Team Fusion – Bethany Hunter, Stephen Dow, Jonathan McCart, Imaan Niven, Declan Hamilton and Hannah Lochhead.

This year’s summer edition has two sections – one for S5 and 6 pupils from Renfrewshire schools, and another for unemployed 18 to 24 year-olds.

Gary said: “I think the Recruit programme is really valuable, and credit to the council because they do it well and you see it making a big difference.

Recruits with NS Design

“I talked them about Facebook and Twitter and how it can be significant in the workplace, but also about how it can get you into trouble if you leave comments that potential employers might read.

“Working with the Recruits is something I always find really inspiring – when you give them licence to speak up and take initiative it’s great to see the results.

Councillor Roy Glen said: “Helping young people find work is one of the biggest priorities of this council, and the Recruit is one of many initiatives run under our successful Invest in Renfrewshire scheme to tackle unemployment.

“The Recruit has been running in Renfrewshire now for five years and in that time it has given hundreds of local young people a valuable taste of the working world, and a helping hand into employment.”[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

Renfrewshire Council Leader unveils promise of wage subsidy for every firm

Every small-to-medium-sized Renfrewshire firm will be able to access council financial support to create a job for an unemployed young person.

Councillor Mark Macmillan made the promise as part of the second anniversary celebrations of Invest in Renfrewshire – the council’s programme to boost business and tackle unemployment.

Under the Renfrewshire Employer Offer, any small-to-medium-sized firm hiring an unemployed young person will be eligible for financial support to help pay that person’s wages.

A firm taking on a young person for more than 25 hours per week will get 50 per cent of national minimum wage for up to 40 hours a week, for up to 12 months.

Invest in Renfrewshire employment conference

Invest in Renfrewshire already runs an employer recruitment incentive programme, while Jobcentre Plus have a similar scheme called the Youth Contract – but the conditions and size of grant depend on who you go to, and who you appoint.

Under the Renfrewshire Employer Offer, the council will top up any gaps in the Jobcentre scheme, meaning the same conditions are on offer across the board.

Invest in Renfrewshire and Jobcentre Plus staff will advise any business on which support best suits them, meaning the vacancy-filling process is simplified for all.

Councillor Macmillan said: “The council is determined to ensure local companies can get the help they need to grow their business and their workforce.

“That’s why we have made such a significant financial contribution to boosting local firms and tackling unemployment through the Invest in Renfrewshire programme.

“Over the two years of Invest in Renfrewshire we have made great strides in tackling unemployment – the rate of local 18-24 year-olds claiming Jobseekers’ Allowance is now just over six per cent, having been above 11 per cent when Invest started.

“In that time more than 650 companies have signed up to benefit from our packages of financial support – but we are always looking for new ways to make things easier.

“With that in mind, the Renfrewshire Employer Offer neatly ties together some schemes that are already there – our own wage subsidy programme, and the Jobcentre Plus equivalent.

“This way, any business knows they can get the same level of support, with the same terms and conditions – no matter which organisation they approach first.”

Cllr Macmillan’s announcement was made as part of a two-day celebration of Invest in Renfrewshire’s second birthday, featuring a showcase and awards ceremony for local businesses, and a conference for employability professionals.

The conference saw around 200 delegates from organisations and training providers from across the area gather to hear updates on latest news and to share ideas on how inequality can be tackled in the job market.

For more information on Invest in Renfrewshire, call 0300 300 1180, email invest@renfrewshire.gov.uk, or visit www.investinrenfrewshire.com[/vc_column_text][vc_separator icon=”star”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Renfrewshire Business hub opening

New hub for local firms is open for Renfrewshire business

A one-stop shop where local firms can find out how to get financial help has been officially opened for business.

The Invest in Renfrewshire Business Hub in Lawn Street, Paisley was given the seal the seal of approval by invited guests from the local business community at a recent event.

Invest in Renfrewshire is Renfrewshire Council’s flagship £8m programme to boost the local economy and tackle youth unemployment.

Renfrewshire Business hub opening

The new facility is open for any local company – whether big or small – to pop in and find out more about the range of support on offer through Invest in Renfrewshire.

It also boasts meeting rooms and will be a venue for networking and business information events, with a series of ‘meet the expert’ clinics in the pipeline.

To mark the official opening, Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan welcomed representatives of local firms, training providers and partner organisations to a business breakfast at the hub.

He said: “The council sees the local economy as a top priority, which is why we have made a sizeable financial commitment to the Invest in Renfrewshire programme.

“It is essential that small businesses are given the chance to thrive, and the council has a key role to play in creating conditions in which that can happen.

“The new business hub is intended to be exactly that – a central place where local firms can visit, attend events, access funding, and network with other professionals.

“Our team of business development advisors are on hand to offer help and advice, as will staff from Business Gateway, who will be based there one day a week.

“We would also encourage any small businesses who need somewhere to go to meet clients can use the facility by booking one of our meeting rooms.”

Renfrewshire Business hub opening

Support on offer to local businesses through Invest in Renfrewshire includes the following;

– business growth grants of up to £10,000 to help firms develop new products or pay for property improvements and IT equipment

– financial help of up to £5,000 for any company taking on an unemployed person or a graduate intern

– loans to help businesses grow or meet the cost of specific projects

– retail improvement grants and help with staff training.

Find more opportunities and information by going to www.investinrenfrewshire.com

rocco2013

Renfrewshire Chamber launch 10th ROCCO Awards

Get ready to ROCCO…

Renfrewshire Chamber are delighted to announce that their 10th annual business awards, the ROCCOs, are now open for entry. This year the Chamber has 16 ROCCO awards, all free to enter and open to all Renfrewshire Chamber members and also non-members based in Renfrewshire. The awards ceremony itself will be held on the 15th November at The Normandy Hotel with Fred MacAulay returning as host.

rocco2013The ROCCOs are the premier business event in Renfrewshire and have been a sell out for many years filling the venue to its capacity (just under 500).

The ROCCO awards and sponsors for 2013 are:

1. ROCCO Award for Customer Service sponsored by intu Braehead
2. ROCCO Award for Journey to Zero Waste sponsored by the William Tracey Group
3. ROCCO Award for Excellence in Manufacturing sponsored by the Scottish Leather Group
4. ROCCO Award for Innovation & Technology sponsorship available
5. ROCCO Award for Business Leader of the Year sponsored by Diageo
6. ROCCO Award for Family Business of the Year sponsored by The Malcolm Group
7. ROCCO Award for Outstanding Performing Business 5 & 25 staff sponsored by the Phoenix Car Company
10. ROCCO Award for Best New Business sponsored by Business Gateway
11. ROCCO Award for Community Champion of the Year sponsored by Engage Renfrewshire & The Royal Bank of Scotland
12. ROCCO Award for International Trade sponsored by Glasgow Airport
13. ROCCO Award for Young Business Person of the Year sponsored by Reid Kerr College
14. ROCCO Award for Employer of the year sponsored by Rolls Royce
15. ROCCO Award for Invest in Renfrewshire sponsored by Renfrewshire Council
16. ROCCO Award for Enterprise in Education sponsored by the University of the West of Scotland

Commenting on the launch of the 10th ROCCOs, chamber President Tom Johnston said “I encourage all organisations to consider entering; the ROCCOs are a great way to be recognised for your achievements. And for those wishing to attend and reward staff & clients with a great night I recommend you reserve your seats soon as the event will sell out”.

The shortlist will be announced by the end of September with finals judging taking place mid-October. The closing date for entry is the 6th September 2013 and the twitter hashtag is #2013ROCCO

For more info and to enter please visit www.roccoawards.com

Funding for new start businesses in Renfrewshire, East Renfrewshire & Inverclyde

For individuals thinking about starting their own business, knowing the right people to ask for advice and information is vital to the success.

For many prospective business owners accessing funding sources is also important in the start-up process. Through Business Gateway, businesses in Renfrewshire, East Renfrewshire and Inverclyde can potentially access some early stage funding provided by the local authorities.

(This news update is from the Business Gateway Ezine, you can find out more by clicking the following link.
http://news.bgateway.com/2013/05/funding-for-new-start-businesses-in-renfrewshire-east-renfrewshire-inverclyde/ )

business-gateway-logo

Renfrewshire – The Renfrewshire Microloan

The Renfrewshire Microloan fund, delivered by Invest In Renfrewshire, aims to support the creation of new enterprises and support the growth of existing micro and small businesses that have potential to create jobs and generate additional economic value.

Unsecured loans of between £1,000 and £5,000 are available with repayment terms of up to 2 years to both new and existing businesses which are unable to secure funding elsewhere but have a viable business capable of repaying a loan.

Loans can be used for the following:

  • Start-up costs including the purchase of existing businesses
  • Provision of working capital
  • Purchase of assets
  • Purchase of commercial property, property extensions or alterationsbusiness-gateway

Inverclyde – Launch Pad Grant

In Inverclyde, the local authority Launchpad Grant (LPG) offers up to £1000 grant support for capital expenditure on business development activities. The LPG provides ‘gap’ funding which is the minimum finance needed to allow a project to proceed after a business – which has been trading for at least six months – establishes how much it can raise itself and from banks and other lenders.

East Renfrewshire – The East Renfrewshire Microloan

Micro and Social Enterprise loans will be available from June 2013 for smaller scale start up projects and social enterprise projects. Loans of between £1,000 and £3,000, repayable over three years, can be accessed through the East Renfrewshire Credit Union.

For each of the local authority funds application and eligibility criteria apply. To find out further information and eligibility criteria, please contact us on 0141 585 6353. We will also post updates on our information and advice for local businesses on Facebook and Twitter.

Find out more by visiting the Business Gateway website here.