Hartlepool firm exceeds job-creation target a year ahead of schedule

Flashback to January 2014 when Northgate Public Services created its Regional Business Centre in the town.
Flashback to January 2014 when Northgate Public Services created its Regional Business Centre in the town.

A town business has exceeded a target to create 235 jobs more than a year ahead of schedule.

That was how many jobs information technology provider Northgate Public Services (NPS) said it would create within three years in February 2014 after signing a seven-year contract to provide Hartlepool Borough Council’s IT services.

But the business has the target more than a year ahead of schedule by currently employing 241 people through Northgate House, in Lynn Street.

And NPS is well on course to exceed its apprenticeship target of 35 over the seven-year partnership with 29 modern apprentices or former apprentices who have become permanent employees to date.

The agreement, which the council says is on track to save the authority £7.6m over the seven years, involved NPS establishing its new Regional Business Centre within Church Street Innovation and Skills Quarter.

It is one of the eight areas identified in the Hartlepool Vision to spark regeneration and create jobs.

Anthony Singleton, executive director forservices at NPS, said: “We’ve been consistently impressed with the skills and commitment of our Hartlepool employees, and their hard work reconfirms our decision to locate one of our key business hubs here.

“Thanks to them, we’re now providing services to every level of government and throughout the UK, and we’ve hit our initial employment targets a full year ahead of the plan.

“The other reason we opened the office here was our faith in the relationship with Hartlepool council. That relationship has only deepened and strengthened.”

Among others, the business hub delivers services to a number of UK local authorities, provides a national 24-hour IT call centre and works on national Department for Transport schemes.

Part of the agreement with the council also resulted in the setting up of the Northgate Academy, in conjunction with Hartlepool College of Further Education to create apprenticeship opportunities for young people.

Another benefit has been the creation of the NPS Community Fund, which sees £30,000 a year in grants made available to help local organisations enhance people’s IT and computer skills.

A further £10,000 is also set aside to support the Gus Robinson Foundation, which supports high-performing students and young entrepreneurs.

Council leader Councillor Christopher Akers-Belcher, said: “It’s very encouraging to see NPS surpassing their employment and apprenticeship targets and the spin-off for the local economy is significant.”