Co-op opens staff support centre

The Co-operative Insurance Society (CIS) has launched a staff resource centre to provide support to employees affected by the 2,000 job cuts announced in 2004.

The ‘New Directions’ centre was unveiled last week, offering professional outplacement support, including counselling, face-to-face meetings, training workshops, CV preparation, interview skills and job search support.

Ken Lewis, resources director for Co-op Financial Services, said: “We appreciate that this is a difficult time for many of our staff members with our modernisation plans now well under way, and we wish to help and support them in any way we can.

“The resource centre will help to facilitate the change process and enhance internal and external redeployment activities.”

Unions have welcomed the move. Hugh Glass-Jones, Amicus officer at CIS, said: “It is good that the company is helping staff that have been affected by the changes, because they are often vulnerable in these situations.

“The other part of the resource centre, which focuses on staff development, is also welcome as employees always want to improve and progress,” he added.

The centre will be based at the main CIS office in Manchester, although the services on offer will be available to all UK staff.

It will be there permanently to support any other changes that the business may go through in the future, the CIS said.

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