A GROWING national and international reputation in 21st Century industries is promising a bright future for the North East.
Nowhere is this more true than software, increasingly viewed as an ideal industry to be at the forefront of the economic recovery, both locally and nationally.
Not only does the sector offer low capital costs, a global market, instantly exportable products and a proven record of very high and rapid growth, it is an area where the North East is already establishing itself as a world-leader.
It’s also an industry where small companies can expand very quickly with the right support.
Over 300 software companies are now active in the region, many of whom are defying the difficult economic conditions to grow, attracting worldwide customers and taking on local staff.
Since opening for business just three years ago Rainton Bridge-based firm The Test Factory have had to repeatedly recruit new staff to meet demand for their services from major international clients including HSBC, the BBC, Vodafone, the NHS and Microsoft.
The company – who help businesses set up custom-made online tests for staff, which they can use to identify skills gaps and carry out training – has now quadrupled in size.
Managing Director Kevin Beales said: “Software is an industry where companies can expand rapidly with the right product, the right staff and the right support but even so we’ve been delighted at the progress we’ve made in such a short time – especially when you consider the economic conditions we’ve been trading in.
“More and more companies have begun to recognize how online assessments provide them with the vital information they need to make accurate and intelligent business decisions. We’ve been able to offer them leading technology to meet those needs.”