Paul Cairns and Louise Kennedy
Tom Keighley

Member Article

Redundancy sparks new opportunity for HR manager Louise

An former HR manager at a top North East supplier to Nissan has realised her dream to start a business after her own redundancy.

Louise Kennedy from Sunderland is putting her 12 years HR experience to use in a new venture - Oculus HR.

The new business will provide HR support and advice across recruitment, line management and people development, to North East SMEs.

Louise, who has also worked for print company BLP, approached the Ready for Business programme, and it’s advisor Paul Cairns, for guidance in starting up.

Oculus will target a market of organisations with between 2-40 employees - having recognised that smaller businesses cannot necessarily justify a full time member of staff, but need regular access to HR expertise and advice.

Louise said: “Too many people view HR as a function designed to sort out problems or to deal with difficult situations such as disciplinaries and redundancy and whilst this is an important aspect of our work, the principle of Oculus HR – whose name derives from the hole in the roof of the Pantheon designed to let light in – is to work with businesses to help them realise the potential of their staff and how they can maximise the potential of these individuals to further their own business.”

Paul Cairn, Ready for Business adviser based at The North East Business and Innovation Centre (BIC) in Sunderland said; “Louise demonstrated the passion, drive and experience needed to move forward with a strong and commercially viable business idea; she has confidently tackled all the necessary aspects and has the right elements in place to not only successfully launch Oculus HR but to strive for further sustainable growth in the future.”

The Ready for Business programme aims to create 6,000 businesses with 10,000 jobs and is supported by the Regional Growth Fund and Barclays.

It is delivered in the North East by Sunderland-based TEDCO which merged with The North East Business and Innovation Centre (BIC) in June this year to create a powerhouse for enterprise support in the North East.

To find out more about th eprogramme or series of free Barclays Get Ready for Business seminars running across the region visit

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Tom Keighley .

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