College teams up with local businesses to boost employment opportunities

Group of people standing with certificates

Borders College Department of Enterprise and Business Innovation (DEBI) recently ran the Employability – Developing Skills for Employment course in partnership with Utility Warehouse (UW), Scottish Borders Council (SBC) and Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). 

The course enabled attendees to upskill in areas such as Customer Service, First Aid, Health and Safety in the Workplace, Introduction to Excel and Employability sessions. Utility Warehouse staff were also on hand to provide details of their day-to-day business operations.

The Employability – Developing Skills for Employment programme is aimed at those who are unemployed. The course was delivered at the Utility Warehouse premises in Selkirk, and participants benefitted from upskilling, recognised certificates, confidence building and interview experience - all key to gaining employment.


Jamie Sword, Prepayment Team Manager at Utility Warehouse, commented:

“Since opening the Utility Warehouse Selkirk Hub in the Summer last year, the team has always focused on being part of the local community. Whether supporting our local charity, Stable Life, or playing an active part in educating people on what we do and how we do it 'differently. 

“Partnering with Borders College was a key milestone in this journey. Hosting this course not only allowed participants to witness first-hand what customer service means to Utility Warehouse, but also enabled us to add real-life insight, as well as showcase our facilities on site. 

"The course itself was an outstanding success for not only the candidates but also for our staff. We look forward to continuing this relationship in the future.”

Ross Docherty, Course Tutor at Borders College, said:

"A great opportunity was created through a partnership with Utility Warehouse, which allowed Employability students to learn and understand how a forward-thinking call centre in the heart of the Scottish Borders operates on a day-to-day basis while also gaining new skills which will enable them to apply for jobs within this business sector and beyond.”

Quotes from participants included:

“Very good course, excellent venue. The teachers gave a lot of interesting information, and, for me as a Ukrainian, it was a great experience.”

“It has been great getting to know new people and learning new skills.”

“The course was interesting and learning how call centres work was cool too.”

“The course was enjoyable, met new people and had fun learning.”

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