£8m benefits contract bringing 20 jobs to Lisahally

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A new £8m contract to deliver services to claimants is leading to the creation of 20 jobs in Londonderry.

The posts will be based at Lisahally Service Centre which already provides services to the Department of Work and Pensions.

The contract will provide a total of 170 jobs in Northern Ireland, the majority of which, 150, will be in Ballymena.

Communities Minister Paul Givan made the announcement during a visit to DWP headquarters in London.

Mr Givan said: “This new contract is the second to be secured by my department this year on behalf of DWP and underscores their confidence in the quality skills and service our staff in Northern Ireland consistently deliver. Providing services to Great Britain on behalf of DWP is now a core part of my department’s business.

“I am confident the new contract will provide excellent opportunities at the sites in Ballymena and Londonderry.”

The contract is for an initial two year period at £4million per annum. The average salary will be in excess of £19,000 for the posts which will be mainly administrative grades.

The posts will assist in the delivery of Universal Credit and the Benefit Cap across Great Britain on behalf of DWP, and are expected to be fully operational by the autumn 2017.

This is the second major contract to be secured by the Department for Communities, with an announcement earlier this year of 280 jobs to provide additional services to DWP commencing in 2017. One hundred additional staff have been recruited to date.