Young people “Kickstart” their careers on the West Midlands Metro

Unemployed young people in the West Midlands have been benefiting from the successful Kickstart scheme in recent months with West Midlands Metro welcoming a new cohort of workers enabling them to take the first step towards a rewarding career on the ever expanding tram network.

The Kickstart programme is a four-way partnership between West Midlands Metro, the Department for Work and Pensions, West Midlands Combined Authority and training provider Release Potential. Backed by the government it provides a valuable boost for skills and training in the region supporting employers with six months of wage costs for young people they take on and support.

A previous cohort of workers employed through this scheme at West Midlands Metro have since gained permanent roles on the network and its hoped this latest intake will be as successful.

The Kickstart initiative is part of a wider recruitment campaign launched ahead of the opening of extensions to Wolverhampton Railway Station and Edgbaston later this year and the further expansion in the coming years.

Claire Scrimshire, Head of HR at the Metro, said: “These ambitious plans present a wealth of employment opportunities for local people looking for a rewarding career. As well as providing young people with practical experience of working in a light rail environment, Kickstart also aims to equip them with a wide range of useful skills and the chance to move onto a formal apprenticeship scheme.”

The network plans to provide opportunities for 46 people through the course of the Kickstart programme in a range of diverse roles including as driver/customer representatives, administrators, customer service officers, stores operatives and assistant maintenance technicians and many more.

Cllr Ian Ward, WMCA Portfolio Holder for transport and leader of Birmingham City Council, said: “This is a period of huge expansion for Metro with the network being extended in Birmingham, Dudley, Sandwell and Wolverhampton and 21 news trams joining the fleet. This training offers our young people to a chance to start an exciting a new career and share in that success.”

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