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Openreach employs VR to help recruit over 115 new engineers in Yorkshire and the Humber
Posted by Nick Hill on 20 Mar 2017
Openreach is set to expand its engineering workforce with plans to recruit more than 115 trainees in Yorkshire and the Humber.
The network business, which is part of BT Group, will be seeking recruits to fill the new, full-time and permanent roles to extend its fibre broadband network.
This recruitment drive is part of a UK-wide initiative to hire 1,500 trainee engineers over the next eight months.
Potential candidates will be able to discover exactly what life as a field engineer involves, with the help of virtual reality (VR).
The company is trialling a VR experience which enables interested applicants to don a headset and experience climbing a telephone pole or exploring the local exchange building in immersive 3D, from the perspective of a real engineer.
New trainees will embark on a 12 month accredited learning programme, including on-the-job experience and culminating with the attainment of a recognised qualification for IT, Software and Telecoms professionals.
Karen Bradley, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, said: "The Government’s £1.7bn rollout programme has helped take superfast broadband to more than nine out of ten homes and businesses in the UK and we are reaching thousands more every week.
“Openreach engineers have played a pivotal role in helping deliver this, and these 1,500 new recruits will be a fantastic addition to our thriving digital economy."
Clive Selley, Openreach chief executive, added: “Improving customer service is our number one priority so we’re investing in our people to make sure we deliver.
“Our customers need us to install new lines and repair our network faster than ever, and by increasing the number of people working on proactive network maintenance, we can fix more issues before people even notice them.
"We are also continuing to roll out superfast broadband services at scale and making big investments in our network to make ultrafast broadband available to up to 12 million homes by the end of 2020.
“We want to recruit the very best people to help us on that journey and our new trainee engineering roles will offer people the hands on experience they need to succeed.“
Emma Peace, Openreach spokesperson in Yorkshire and the Humber, commented: “We know from past experience that this region is an excellent place to recruit skilled and motivated people, who make great engineers. Openreach is able to offer them a rewarding career in an exciting and fast moving industry.
“The trainee engineers will be playing a vital part in the future success and prosperity of Yorkshire and the Humber. High-speed communications have never been more important for local households and businesses – and will become even more important in the years ahead.“
The business also intends to trial them in-person with potential applicants at recruitment roadshows and events throughout the year.
Across the UK, Openreach has hired 5,000 engineers and more than 900 apprentices and graduates over the last four years.