Our Work Programme performance is finding sustained work for more people than ever, driven by a combination of employment assistance, skills development and new business support.

Together with our subcontractors we operate in four contract package areas: the North East, North West (Greater Manchester, Cheshire and Warrington), South East (Surrey, Sussex and Kent) and Birmingham, Solihull and the Black Country. With their help, over 113,800 new jobs have been filled through the Work Programme and 7,200 new businesses have been created.

One of the people we’ve helped into work is 21 year-old Helen from Horley.

Helen had just finished college when she was referred to us on the Work Programme. She was keen to secure her first paid role but she was aware that she had some personal barriers to overcome. Helen has Asperger’s syndrome and has to make a conscious effort to interact confidently with people she doesn’t know.

Helen’s job coach, Katherine, identified that she needed personal support finding suitable vacancies, writing job applications and, above all, a boost in confidence.

Helen attended a pre-employment training course where she received additional help with her CV and applications as well as tips and techniques to help her succeed in interview scenarios. The one-to-one support during the course, the interaction with fellow jobseekers and tutors, and the presentation and delivery helped Helen to improve her confidence and communication skills considerably in just a matter of weeks. So much so that following the course she interviewed successfully for the role of Convenience Assistant at Sainsbury’s.

Six months on, and Helen is settled into her role. Commenting on her progress, she says:

“I feel much more comfortable interacting with customers and get on well with both the customers and my colleagues. I’m getting better at working under pressure and I feel my confidence has improved”

Not only do we help people like Helen find jobs, but we also help all the jobseekers we work with access training to gain the skills and qualifications they need to get the jobs they want – more than 2,500 people have started an Apprenticeship qualification with us and we’ve delivered more than 18,000 pre-employment training qualifications for jobseekers since 2012.

We also support Work Programme jobseekers to start their own businesses. Over 7,200 people have gone on to start their own business with the support of an Enterprise Advisor.