Hartlepool firm looks ahead after grant boost

A recruitment firm is on target to grow after receiving a Covid-19 recovery grant from a North East business support group.

By Tom Patterson
Tuesday, 30th November 2021, 9:36 am

Wynyard-based Paul Card Recruitment received the £2,000 from the Open North Foundation, which has aided recruitment and stimulated a strong marketing push.

Established in 2013, the firm specialises in recruitment in the accountancy and finance sectors and clients include the Pacifica Group and Able UK.

The company was growing prior to the pandemic and moved into larger offices at Wynyard Business Park on the day a national lockdown was announced and had to wait a full year until they could use them.

Carly Merryweather, of the Open North Foundation with Paul Card, of Paul Card Recruitment.

Owner Paul Card said: “Almost immediately, our business was hit as clients put their recruitment plans on hold.

“The business was financially sound, so we made the decision to keep everyone at work and not take up the Job Retention Scheme.

"It was still important that we looked to support the company by investigating other forms of grand aid and that is when we became aware of the fantastic work Open North Foundation was undertaking and we applied for funding.”

Open North Foundation was established in July 2020 and provides financial and in-kind support to small businesses in the region directly hit by the pandemic.

It relies on the generosity of companies and organisations to provide donations and has a board of directors, ambassadors and supporters, all of whom provide their services free of charge.

Paul added: “The funding application enabled us to remained very positive with ambitious plans, including the hire of a marketing executive.

“The £2,000 was a great boost and was an important lever in our decision to hire.”

Richard Swart, chair of Open North Foundation, said: “Many small companies have been badly affected by the pandemic and gone under.

"Some have cut costs and battled on. Others decided to innovate, develop alternative revenue streams and drive forward with new strategies.

"Paul Card Recruitment falls very much into the latter category.

"We were very impressed by the firm’s positive approach to the pandemic, pleased to make a grant the business, and look forward to hearing great things about its growth in the years ahead.”