Northern Rock staff look to main rival Newcastle Building Society for jobs

Axe-threatened Northern Rock employees are flooding to the troubled bank’s main rival, Personnel Today can reveal.

Newcastle Building Society (NBS) has seen a huge rise in job applications and enquiries from Northern Rock staff since it was nationalised last month after being fatally damaged by the credit crunch.

Media reports have suggested that new Northern Rock boss Ron Sandler will make up to half the 6,000-strong workforce redundant. Meanwhile, NBS last week published plans to create 500 jobs over the next five years after a 52% rise in profits in 2007.

Chris Jopling, HR and training executive at NBS, told Personnel Today: “We have started to see significant increases in approaches from Northern Rock staff. Many are directly applying for jobs advertised or on our website, while others are just general enquiries.”

Three current and former Northern Rock employees will join the training and development section of Jopling’s HR team this week.

NBS has just opened a new office in north Tyneside and is looking to hire hundreds of customer service staff as well as IT and HR professionals. Asked if the company, which is headquartered just three miles from Northern Rock in Newcastle city centre, could provide a lifeline for staff whose jobs are on the line, Jopling replied: “I think we could.”

He stressed that only 100 jobs a year were likely to become available, but said that he would be “happy to talk to Northern Rock”.

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