Work – 2

The Long-term Unemployed

A suggestion to help the long-term unemployed find suitable employment:

a – Skill testing in five areas – intensive over five days with an approved ‘Investors in People’ training provider:

  1. Creative – the arts, literacy skills, culinary skills, fairtrade, thinking skills, etc;
  2. Physical – the sciences, health, sport, physical geography, numeracy, etc;

  3. Spiritual – various faiths and their beliefs, worldviews, and how they affect our understanding and practices ie ethics, vocation, etc;
  4. Social – relationships, community and issue involvement, human geography, world history, politics, etc;
  5. Practical – do-it-yourself, empowering others, analytical skills, debating skills, mediation skills.

b – Develop a training plan with SMART goals identifying any specific training the person requires with the training done in such a way as if they were going to mentor/coach someone else in the skill area(s) they show the most potential – this also provided by the training organisation for up to six weeks, depending on the individual’s requirements;

c – Place in a third sector organisation – to use mentoring/coaching skills in a specific project under supervision for six weeks;

d – Identify a work placement with a local employer, where they spend six weeks developing their potential skills with a mentor/coach in each of several different areas;

e – Given a four day intensive job-finding training, not teaching.  This to include filling in application forms, writing curriculum vitaes, interviewing skills (role-play as interviewer and interviewee), appearance, dealing with nerves, employer research, etc;

f – A Personal Advisor is allocated to help the individual ‘target’ employment opportunities suitable for the individual, taking into account personal circumstances and trying to help them overcome any obstacles;

g – If the individual needs to move to find appropriate job, an allowance is paid and help is given in finding suitable accommodation (this bit is done by a local ‘buddy’ – see below);

h – If a job is found in a ‘new’ area, a local ‘buddy’ volunteer is allocated to help find one’s way for up to two months.  This ‘buddy’ is on hand with advice to get to know people through voluntary work and local societies; local public transport, health and council facilities and to point the individual to appropriate help with other issues;

i – Follow up after six months is undertaken to make sure that all the legal requirements have been fulfilled by the employer in terms of health and safety and salaries/wages and that the individual has settled in and found some friends.

With such support, along with investment in jobs by employers in areas of high unemployment, I am convinced long-term unemployment should be vastly reduced because employers will have experienced and skilled employees.