Researchers reveal key to guiding jobseekers back to work
The report, commissioned by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills, includes case studies in the form of a companion publication entitled 'Developing Business, Developing Careers', demonstrating how seven UK employers, including Morrisons Supermarkets, BUPA, Barclaycard and Arla Foods, have engaged with career development intermediaries to improve their business whilst recruiting jobseekers .
Careers development intermediaries include publicly-funded careers and employment services, community and voluntary sector bodies as well as employers' own staff skills development strategies, trade unions and professional associations. They can act as a mediator between job seekers and employers and provide advice, access to available jobs and training as well as work experience and work placement opportunities.
Researcher, Dr David Devins, from the Policy Research Institute at Leeds Metropolitan, commented: "There is evidence that employers can be wary of employing people who are out of work. Our research identifies five main areas in which employers, careers guidance intermediaries and job-seekers can collaborate, to achieve their objectives, which include: influencing the labour market, recruitment, workforce development, redundancy and community engagement."
Examples of case studies include Morrisons Supermarket who, through their 'shop floor to top floor' programme, aim to provide opportunities for many of their recruits to build a career in retailing. Morrisons plan to create 7,000 new jobs in 2012 through the opening of new stores and development of its manufacturing and logistics arms. Many of these job opportunities offer people the chance to learn craft skills such as butchery, bakery and fishmongery and, through their partnership with organisations such as the social enterprise, Create, Morrisons are reaching out to offer these job opportunities to unemployed people. Currently, around half of the jobs available at a new store opening are taken by the previously unemployed. A training programme has been designed with Create who prepare the unemployed for entry into the retail sector. Employees do work placements in the company and train up to a specific job whilst also having the opportunity to get work experience across the business so that they can plan the career route they would like to pursue. Whilst at Morrisons, workers can continue to develop and gain a variety of qualifications through the courses offered by Create's Academy.