Acorn Recruitment and Training Ltd.

Origins

Acorn was founded in 1992 and has grown quickly during the last ten years. A major advancement for the business was the initiation of its training team in 1997. This supplies quality training programmes and associated services that meet the needs of the business community throughout Wales, complementing the recruitment business to create a total package. Acorn also has a dedicated Call Centre Training facility enabling the delivery of call centre/customer service training and other tailored packages for 16 individuals at a time, with two other general training facilities in Cardiff and Swansea. Acorn’s training programmes are endorsed by the EMTA Awards Ltd. (EAL), City & Guilds of London Institute, NEBS and are supported by ELWa.

Success Factor

In March 2001 Acorn was officially recognised within the recruitment industry by winning The Best UK Regional Recruitment Company 2002 and The Gold Award Winner – the best company out of all 13 categories. This recognition was further endorsed when Acorn were winners of the first Welsh Excellence in Growth Award 2002 at a ceremony in Cardiff’s CIA during the Welsh Business Week in May 2002.

The Future

The past 18 months has seen continued growth in turnover, profit and new clients covering both traditional business sectors (such as manufacturing, technical and commercial) as well as new sectors (contact centres, public services, hotel and catering, and nursing). Major highlights include the launch of contactUs Limited, Acorn’s specialist division addressing the recruitment needs of the UK Contact Centre industry, which was conducted at Call Centre Expo ’01 and resulted in significant business throughout Wales and North West England. As Wales’ largest independent recruitment and training specialists, Acorn also seized opportunities to strengthen certain other specialist sectors by acquisition. For example, the Technical and Trades Division has been boosted by the acquisition of Cowbridge-based Gforce, who bring additional expertise in sourcing and recruiting construction and mechanical, electrical and instrumentation professionals for associated business sectors. Acorn’s Training Division has seen steady growth particularly in developing and delivering a Call Centre Handling NVQ Programme and successfully winning and delivering such programmes to various Blue Chip Call Centres in South Wales. The company aims to build on its close association and recognition as an approved training provider to ELWa, enhancing its portfolio of training services allowing clients to reap the benefits of such a partnership. In addition, the business will continue to provide the manufacturing sector with its performing manufacturing operations NVQ as an integrated part of their organisations continual training and development plans. The continuous expansion of the business has meant that it has outgrown its current headquarters and the first quarter of 2002 saw the start of the construction of Acorns new Head Office and Training Centre at the Cleppa Park, on the outskirts of Newport. This £1.5 million self build development will accommodate all Acorn’s Head Office functions covering Finance, Payroll, IT, Marketing, HR, and certain specialist divisions in addition to a bespoke Training Centre, capable of delivering a wide range of training programmes. Acorn expects to move in by the end of the year.