ResQ’s doubling of its Hammonds of Hull footprint is complete as the outsourced contact centre specialist gears up for further growth.
The city success story’s latest move has seen it take the second storey of the iconic building, two years on from the first. And the third floor isn’t being ruled out as it awaits news of several major contract bids, with public sector and retail opportunities being explored alongside its energy and telecommunications strengths.
A celebration event was held to mark the addition, with guests invited in to take in the expansion, with coffee shop, vast open plan working area, training rooms, private booths and mini ‘amphitheatres’ for group briefings.
Executive chair Nic Marshall said: “I am immensely proud of our Hull roots and the opportunity we have been given to make a meaningful impact for the communities in and around Hull. We are really grateful for it.
“We feel we are creating a legacy with what we have been doing over the last 17 years. It is hard to think that less than 20 years ago we took a business plan – on a single sheet of paper – to our accountants, and said ‘we are going to create an outsourced call centre in Hull’. Little did we know that 20 years later we would have got to this.”
What started with a £5,000 grant from The Acorn Fund, has just been supported with a £750,000 Levelling-Up cash injection, with significantly more spent by the business.
It launched at Chariot House in neighbouring Carr Lane, with 18 desk positions, and then moved to Anchor House at The Maltings, which gave the team a capacity of 250 work stations. Criterion House expansion followed from 2013, and with a 10-year lease expiring there, and new work being won and planned for, the latest moves were triggered.
While 20 per cent of the workforce are home-based, the majority business-to-business, Hammonds offers more than 1,000 desk spaces, with 515 added to the original 500 launched in 2021. ResQ is understood to now have the biggest floorplate of any single occupier in the city.
“We started with 12 people, we now employ in excess of 2,000 people in Hull and County Durham. We are over the moon, delighted and hungry to do more,” Mr Marshall said. “This is the second phase of Hammonds of Hull, is there a third? Let’s wait and see!”
Described as the “best fit-out in our evolution” by chief executive Gill Marchbank, the 32,000 sq ft addition has been designed by Hull’s Chameleon Business Interiors, a business it has worked with on every move.
She said it was the “most modern and sleek” design, adding: “I am immensely proud of the space we have built, but more so the people we employ, and the career opportunities we give.It is really important that while we celebrate the bricks and mortar, we remember it is the people who make the business.”
She sees potential to add a further 1,000 staff in Hull, depending on the nature of work won, and with 16,000 applications for jobs received over the past year, it has established itself as an employer of choice, and been recognised as such. Proud of her ‘no CV’ policy with assessments of “current attitude and desire to do a good job” made on call-backs, Mrs Marchbank updated on progress, days after 2022’s results were published.
She said: “This year, in a very challenging market, we are going to do 10 per cent growth on turnover, with EBITDA up 100 per cent. From a profitability point of view the business continues to grow extremely positively because of the work we do out there for our clients.”
Mrs Marchbank added the business, with revenues of £48.5 million in 2022, was also aiming to hit a turnover of £75 million in 2024.
Matt Marshall, chief commercial officer, said: “We thought if we got to 200 employees we would have won the World Cup. Now we’re standing shoulder to shoulder with the big boys in the industry, and bloodying their noses at every turn. We are immensely proud.”
Reflecting on ResQ being one of only 14 companies to be able to supply to government and its agencies, he added: “It is a coming of age for ResQ. We are mixing it up with multi-million pound, multi-national organisations, standing firm, standing with our elbows out.”
Outlining huge opportunities across the public and private sector, with revenue numbers in the hundreds of millions over multiple years, he told how strategy had moved from “scatter gun to sniper” as ResQ’s reputation has built. “The business is in the best place it has ever been; ResQ is now sitting at the top table doing great things. We are all very proud of what we have achieved, and I cannot wait to bring these opportunities back to Hull.”
Original artice – https://business-live.co.uk/all-about/yorkshire-humber