Thursday, January 8, 2015

News: Pinnacle People to support enterprising jobseekers in Rotherham

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Enterprising jobseekers have set up 400 new businesses in Rotherham thanks to Barnsley & Rotherham Chamber and a government scheme and that helps unemployed people turn their dreams of becoming their own boss into a reality.

It will be up to a new contract holder to carry on the good work after the Government procured Pinnacle People Limited to deliver the mentoring in Yorkshire for the next two years.

The New Enterprise Allowance (NEA) has been behind a wide range of new ventures since it was introduced in 2011. It involves jobseekers receiving business support including a mentor to help develop business ideas and write a business plan.

In Rotherham, participants received guidance from a business mentor at Barnsley & Rotherham Chamber to develop a business idea, with continued support through to the early stages of trading.

The scheme also entitles participants to a weekly allowance worth £1,274 over 26 weeks and, start-up capital is needed, they may also be able to access a loan up to £1,000 to help with your start-up costs.

Since the scheme was launched in April 2011, there have been 115,750 starts with an NEA business mentor nationally, with 60,480 starting trading, leaving benefits and receiving the weekly allowance. In Rotherham, 770 started with a mentor and 400 started receiving the weekly allowance.

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Registered in London, Pinnacle People secured the Government contracts across three new regions in England (Yorkshire, Central England, and South East), building on success of delivering NEA for the past three years in Thames Valley and Leicestershie, Northants and Thames Valley. It also operates Work Programme and ESF Families contracts for the DWP.

The contract for South Yorkshire, West Yorkshire and North East Yorkshire and the Humber is valued at over £1.5m and there is a potential for further extensions up to two years subject to funding availability and performance.

Since 2009 Pinnacle People has delivered specialist self-employment support to over 10,000 individuals who wish to enter self-employment through a wide range of back to work initiatives. Acting as a prime provider, sole delivery of the contract is set to include hour long initial assessments on the viability of business ideas, business planning seminars, practical classes, links to other support in the area and eight weeks of support through the pre-trading period. The Pinnacle People business club is also available to all NEA participants offering a range of free-to-use services.

In previous contracts, Pinnacle People has used a flexible staffing bank and deployed over 200 freelance advisors to over 2,000 customers per month. The firm also calls on a bank of volunteer mentors.

In Rotherham, business seminars and ongoing mentoring support is set to be delivered at Dinnington Business Centre, The Wesley Centre in Maltby and The Unity Centre in Rotherham town centre.

Targets are based on 9,000 referrals from the Job Centre to achieve 7,467 starts. Pinnacle is aiming for 75% of referrals starting the NEA programme, 55% of customers starting provision to commence trading and 75% of customers starting trading going on to complete 26 weeks of trading.

Pinnacle People website

Images: Pinnacle People

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