eircom has launched an €18 million recruitment scheme to create 375 new jobs and help to build a national communications network across Ireland.

The initiative involves new apprentice and graduate programmes that will run over five years. Successful candidates will be offered full-time positions at the end of the process, eircom said, in the first "large scale sustained" recruitment programme by the company in almost 30 years.

Three-hundred apprentice positions will be made available as Customer Service and Assurance Technicians where the primary focus will be on the maintenance and repair of equipment in eircom’s network.

Eircom is in the process of rolling out fibre to 1.6 million premises by the end of 2016 as part of €400 million investment programme.

A further 75 position will go to graduates will be offered the chance to learn in either a general programme or a specialised finance one. \

[Read more: eircom sees return to mobile growth as CEO eyes more cost savings]

Richard Moat (pictured), CEO eircom Group, claimed the operator is the only company in the telecommunications sector investing in people at scale.

He commented: “This is a key element in the ongoing transformation of the Group, and one we feel passionately about. These programmes are an integral part of our growth strategy.

"All of the 375 apprentices and graduates who come into the company over the next five years will be working as part of our team either on the frontline building Ireland’s communications network or providing innovative new products and services to our growing customer base.”

The UK’s Minister for Communications, Alex White, said the initiative was a boon to the Government’s plan to create 100,000 new jobs by 2016.

White commented: “The apprentice and graduate schemes being announced by eircom today are examples of quality job creation, and the kind of skills development that will drive our recovering economy."

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