Carey Bilton joined Ryedale District Council in September 2021 as a Senior Business Advisor. We recently caught up with her to find out how she is getting on in this role and what impact this is making in the Ryedale area.
So, Carey, what were you doing before you took up this role at Ryedale District Council?
For the past 28 years, I worked for different organisations within the skills sector. Practically, this meant that I worked with businesses of all sizes and from different sectors advising them on opportunities around apprenticeships and funding, as well as how to develop the skills of their workforce so that they could achieve their business ambitions.
Why are you so passionate about helping businesses?
In the past, I ran my own business so I’ve experienced what it’s like to be a ‘business owner’ and am aware of the many challenges faced by small and micro businesses. I’d like to think that I can now apply what I’ve learned- sometimes, by learning things the hard way- and help businesses benefit and achieve their goals faster.
What’s been the main focus of your role as Senior Business Advisor?
Recently, I’ve been administering the government’s Additional Restrictions Grants (ARG) and also have established a Small Business Development Grant specifically for SME’s within Ryedale to assist with new business start-up costs or to help them grow. It’s really satisfying to be able to provide tangible support to businesses when you know they have a great business idea or business case to expand.
What’s been a key learning for you in your new role working with local businesses?
We are incredibly fortunate in York & North Yorkshire to have access to a wide variety of business support. For example, we would definitely recommend businesses reach out to our York & North Yorkshire Growth Hub as they can often provide direct support themselves or if not, can signpost to others who can. For me, partnership working is really important for us in this region. If we can work together to support our local businesses when they need it, we can create a thriving regional economy that benefits everyone.
To find out more about the business support services in your area, call Faye on our helpdesk for free on 0800 246 5045
To find out more about the work of the York & North Yorkshire Growth Hub, watch our short video here.
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The York and North Yorkshire Growth Hub is working in collaboration with City of York Council and Harrogate Borough Council to deliver an extensive range of business support programmes. Starting from September 2022, these events will be held at venues in York and Harrogate, as well as online, and aim to support business owners, managers,