REDUNDANCY proved to be just the start for businesswoman Alison Driver who set her own company up in a matter of weeks.
Metis HR was founded in 2011 and five years on Alison has taken on her first employee Alison Penney, her personal assistant.
Alison, 55, from Bankside Lane, Bacup, has worked in a variety of different jobs from being a lecturer in business and management at Accrington and Rossendale College to hotel services manager at Rossendale General Hospital in charge of 105 staff.
At Oldham Social Services she got experience of personnel and training and she uses all those skills in her role now.
She said: “When I go to networking groups I describe my business as ‘protecting the employer from their own employees’.
“It raises a few eyebrows. Employers understand what I mean and employees should have nothing to fear if their rights are respected by their bosses.
“When an employee is signed up they have 91 rights, 78 on day one, 14 before they have been employed and three after you have parted company.
“It feels like a very scary place when you are an employer and there are a lot of urban myths about an employees rights.”
Alison already had a degree in Institutional Management and went on to put herself through a Masters in Business Administration.
She loves the problem solving aspect of her job and she relishes helping employers find solutions to tricky situations.
Alison got first-hand experience of this when she worked at Rossendale General and had to make 36 people redundant, but she managed to use her contacts and found them all jobs before the redundancy took effect.
“The first year I was in business I networked constantly,” said Alison. “I had never had to do that before because I worked in the public sector.
“By January 2012 those seeds I had planted began to sprout and I have not stopped since. When I retire I am going to write a book about the things I have seen.”
She works for large and small companies across the North West and some ‘down south’ one has 200 employees but no human resources department.
“As well as helping employers with staff dismissals and redundancies, I also help to recruit staff for jobs,” said Alison
“Nothing fazes me. There is very little I have not come across. Like the time a lady said she had taken her own appendix out, but she was ok now. There was another who reorganised my office while being interviewed, she didn’t get the job. Recruitment can be quirky.
“I started the business all on my own and now I am making pretty close to what I was before redundancy.
“One of the good things I have found is, unlike when you work for someone and everyone is out for themselves, people want to help you when you work for yourself.”