Arrival of new Chippenham store brings end to five-year job hunt (From The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald)
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Arrival of new Chippenham store brings end to five-year job hunt
After five years of being out of work, Kate Harrington had all but given up hope of getting a job.
But the 24-year-old’s luck turned with the arrival of B&M in Chippenham and she is thrilled to be working in the new Bumpers Way store, which opens at 9am tomorrow.
Miss Harrington, who lives in Corsham, applied for an eight-hour general assistant position but impressed the firm so much she was offered the role of supervisor.
“I was over the moon to get a job and then on induction day I was told I was going to be supervisor. I was thrilled,” she said.
Miss Harrington, who has one daughter aged four and another of 14 months, was made redundant from Threshers when it closed down in Market Place, Chippenham.
“I was constantly looking for work but only had 15 interviews in five years,” she said. “It was quite difficult because some people didn’t want to employ me because of childcare. I was thinking, ‘what’s the point?’ “Then B&M came along and took a chance and I’m very pleased. A big store like this is giving so many people opportunities.”
Interim manager Mike Hedley said: “Kate was very quickly recognised by us.”
He said the response during recruitment was “phenomenal” and about 300 people got through to the interview stage, which took place over two hours.
Mr Hedley said: “It includes group activities to see who can prioritise and see how they interact, because we want people with a bit of pizzazz.”
A new store manager, recruited from Chippenham, is to take over from him in ten weeks.
The firm has employed 60 people, mostly from the Chippenham and Malmesbury areas, 20 fewer than B&M announced last month. There is a mixture of part-time roles plus some full-time management roles. The store sells discount products.
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