Barclays hires while others don't

May 20, 2009 4:51:51 PM PDT
As businesses continue to lay off workers and close up shop, one company in Delaware is bucking the trend.With a snip of the ribbon, the only local financial services company that is expanding rather than downsizing or folding, opened a new customer contact center in Newark today.

300 employees will be working at Barclays, with 500 expected at the end of the year. The expansion was announced last February. In April, more than a thousand people showed up at a job fair hoping to get one of those jobs

At that April job fair, many wondered if they could beat the odds by actually landing a position here when there are so few available, but this company made good on a promise to expand while others are cutting back.

Marcus Mitchell was among those recently hired. He now trains people to work at Barclays, at a time when other local companies like Chrysler are shutting down, leaving hundreds jobless.

"I feel hopeful because if Barclays can find success and if Barclays can come into a community like this, that has had a few hits, then I feel hopeful that other companies might sort of follow in that same line," Mitchell said.

Tricia Curlett spent 20 years with another credit card company that is no longer around.

"I feel very fortunate to get into a company that's growing. I don't know if there's a lot of people who can say that nowadays," Curlett said.

Joe Purzycki is Barclays chief operating officer with a master plan that goes against the grain of other struggling businesses.

"Despite the difficulties, we still feel there are opportunities and a silver lining in this economy and we believe we'll come out of this economy before long," Purzycki said.

These employees are banking on Barclays plan to expand while wading through rough waters because they know the company's financial survival means their own.

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