Workforce Analytics: Northumberland Line

Using its Skills Intelligence Model (SIM) NSAR provided the UK Department for Transport with a workforce analysis for the proposed reopening of the Northumberland line.



The Northumberland line aims to stimulate and support economic growth, regeneration and community development in Northumberland and the surrounding regions by providing new and improved transport links for local people and businesses. The Department for Transport wanted to know about the size of the workforce needed to undertake the proposed reopening and understand the possible economic and social value benefits.

Our Process

Using the SIM, NSAR modelled the workforce required to undertake the reopening. We assumed a construction life cycle of 2021 to 2023 and apportioned the finances accordingly, with the line being fully operational from 2023. A workforce would be required to maintain and operate the line post-implementation, and this was considered in the workforce demand output. A workforce plan was built that identified which roles would be required and when, allowing specific recruitment of people with the right skills to deliver the project on time and within budget.


The analysis identified that, at peak demand, the Northumberland Line would generate an additional 630 jobs. Once the construction phase was completed, an additional 138 jobs will be required to operate the line. Across the construction and operational phase, an average of 250 roles per year would be needed.

Modelling using the SIM shows that the Northumberland Line could generate in excess of £40m in additional economic value to the North East region. NSAR was also able to show that there will be high employment social value benefits for the North East region if the Northumberland Line was to be reopened.


Decision-makers were supported with a clear understanding of workforce costs and benefits for the project, as well as the overall economic and social value generated.

The creation of a workforce plan to undertake the modelling also helped with the initial stages of project planning.

Scroll to Top