BT is to create scores of new apprenticeship and graduate jobs in the region.
The company has annonced around 165 posts will be made in its drive to equip young people with the skills and training needed to meet the challenges of a changing jobs market.
We are offering exciting, high quality careersFarooq Hakim
Recruitment will take place in several locations, including South Shields, Durham and Sunderland.
This year’s BT apprentice and graduate recruitment, which includes mobile operator EE, will see the new employees work in a variety of roles, ranging from customer service, vehicle maintenance and HR to ICT.
BT says it is is committed to building a culture of tech literacy within the UK so that the country remains a digital leader.
The regional recruits will be part of a national 1,700 new apprentices and graduates for the firm.
Apprenticeships and Skills Minister, Robert Halfon, welcomed the announcement, saying: “It is always good to talk about apprenticeships and the ladder of opportunity they give people to secure the career they want.
“By committing to injecting 1,700 new graduate and apprentice jobs into the UK, BT is offering a real chance to be trained by some of the best in their field.”
Farooq Hakim, chairman of BT’s North East regional board, said: “This latest major recruitment is a further example of BT’s commitment to the North East as one of the region’s leading employers and investors.
“We are offering exciting, high quality careers in a fast moving industry in order to ensure the households and businesses of this region are able to benefit from the latest, first class communications.
“The new recruits will be joining a world-leading company, which has already invested hundreds of millions of pounds in the North East in technologies such as superfast broadband and 4G.”
BT is one of the UK’s largest employers with 81,000 UK-based people and the company supports around 12,600 jobs in the North East through direct employment, spending with contractors and suppliers and the spending of employees - and gives an annual boost to the region’s economy worth £1.16billion.