Homeworking firm Not Just Travel has appointed former Thomas Cook trade partnership manager Katrina Latimer as head of trade and homeworking.

Latimer, who has taken up the role with immediate effect, has been tasked with recruiting homeworkers who already have experience and are currently working in the travel industry.

The new recruits form part of Not Just Travel’s new trade homeworking division in a fresh strategic approach by the company, which already has around 700 travel consultants.

Co-founder Paul Harrison said: “Up until now we’ve predominantly recruited and intensely trained the ‘man-off-the-street’ transforming them into successful travel consultants.

“Imagine what we can do if we take experienced agents and ignite their entrepreneurial potential, making them into highly successful business owners.

“Katrina is the perfect person to spearhead this new strategic approach because she understands the industry inside out and brings with her years of experience of having worked with both agents and suppliers.

“We feel highly privileged that Katrina has come on board – we appreciate that she had several choices in the past few weeks. Being so well-respected in the industry, she comes with a huge amount of authority and credibility.”

Latimer was until at Thomas Cook until its collapse on September 23. She started her career in travel at ILG and Sunworld, worked for 14 years at First Choice, followed by seven years at Tui.

She said: “I am very excited to join a company that offers such huge untapped potential. It’s still young, yet it has achieved so much and I’d like to be part of that more strategic growth.

“One thing we can all learn from the Thomas Cook demise is that a job is not a guarantee of security. The landscape has changed and it’s going to be in a state of flux for years to come.

“Increasingly, the only way to take control of your career and create the lifestyle you want is to work for yourself. With the depth of knowledge that agents out there have, married with the support and training that Not Just Travel offers, setting up on their own is a step that I think many agents should consider.”

New homeworkers recruited from within the travel industry are promised the same level of training as current consultants but with more focus on marketing and business acumen as opposed to teaching them about travel.

Harrison added: “We pride ourselves on the in-depth training and the support we give all our consultants and the aftercare service that our customers enjoy – they are fundamental to our business.

“That will remain the same for our new trade recruits, yet their training will primarily teach them the fundamentals of becoming a very successful entrepreneur who, like some of our consultants, are earning hundreds of thousands of pounds each year. With the right attitude and the support that we give, individuals can earn as much as a high street agency earns – all for themselves.

“We’ve proved that we’ve got a track record of innovation. Now we’re proactively promoting our USP’s – which include offering market leading commission rates – to the trade.”