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John Emmerson, 39, has joined Garlands Call Centres as Director of Talent and as a member of the board. He will be responsible for human resources, including the enhancement of Garlands' people development programs, at the company's Hartlepool Marina and Middlesbrough-based customer contact centres

Garlands passionately believes that people are key to providing the best customer service and the company has received widespread praise for the quality of its people development programs, including a Special Commendation at the prestigious 2003 HR Excellence Awards, where Garlands was amongst only nine UK companies recognised.

The appointment of John Emmerson confirms Garlands commitment to the on-going development of its people development programs as well as to initiatives that create a more positive working environment that's conducive to delivering the highest possible levels of customer service.

John Emmerson comes to Garlands from Orange PCS and brings over 15 years HR experience from within the finance, retail and telecoms sectors. At Orange, John drove the company's people development programs, initially as UK Learning and Development Manager and more latterly as Competency Development Manager. Prior to this, John was the Human Resources manager for Littlewoods Home Shopping based at the company's North East call centre. His early career was with Barclays Bank, where his roles included that of Human Resources Manager for Barclaycall. John has an MBA from Newcastle Upon Tyne University

"The introduction of contact centre working has thrown up many new and interesting HR challenges for companies of all shapes and sizes. Absenteeism and attrition are two of the most frequently cited but there a whole range of other equally important issues that the industry is still struggling to resolve - from the nature of the contact centre environment to the equipping of agents with relevant technical and life skills. I'm extremely pleased to be joining a company that's already recognised as a leader in the contact centre HR field and look forward to the challenge of making the contact centre a place where people can develop more rewarding and more long term careers".

"We're delighted to welcome John Emmerson to Garlands" says Chey Garland, the Chief Executive of Garlands Call Centres. "He has an impressive track record in people development and the wider human resource management field and great ideas on how we can move our HR function forward".

About Garlands

Garlands Call Centres is the UK's leading provider of outsourced customer contact services via phone, email and the Web. Garlands' services range from customer service to outbound customer acquisition, debt collection, customer retention, technical assistance, cross selling, upselling, staff accounts, activations, credit management, customer registrations and customer lifecycle management.

The company has a blue chip client list that includes leading businesses in the telecoms (mobile and fixed), utilities, Internet services, multi media entertainment and financial services industries. Garlands provides a truly integrated multichannel contact handling capability with the ability to manage customer contacts via phone, email and the Web as a single queue and in accordance with user-defined business rules.

Garlands believes that people are the key to delivering superlative customer service. It provides comprehensive and innovative programmes with a holistic focus to develop the skills of its staff - programmes that extend beyond the call centre and into the local community. Garlands Call received a Special Commendation for HR Excellence at the 2003 HR Excellence Awards.

Garlands owns three prestigious contact centre sites, two in Hartlepool Marina and one in Middlesbrough town centre. With 1900 personnel, Garlands is the second largest private employer in the Tees Valley.

Garlands was named 'Best Large UK Contact Centre' at the 2002 National Customer Service Awards and was a finalist in the category 'Best Inbound UK Contact Centre' at the 2004 National Sales Awards. Garlands Chief Executive, Chey Garland, was named 'Business Services Entrepreneur of the Year' at the 2002 Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Finals, 'Best Business Leader' in the 100+ employee category at the 2002 Sage Business Awards and is a finalist in the 'CRM Business Leader of the Year' category of the 2004 CRM Industry Awards.

For further media information, please contact:

Michael Gray
Garlands Call Centres
Tel: 020 8744 9168

This press release was distributed by ResponseSource Press Release Wire on behalf of Gray Associates in the following categories: Business & Finance, for more information visit