FEWER people in Swindon are on Universal Credit than last year, as the town’s jobcentre works to help them find employment.
As of May 2022, there were 4,403 people relying on benefits in the area, which is 2,694 (38 per cent) fewer than in May 2021.
In terms of 18-to-24-year-olds, the number of claimants has dropped by 47 per cent from1,302 to 688.
However, when compared to five years ago, there are 971 more Universal Credits claimants – a rise of 28 per cent – and 136 (25 per cent) more 18-to-24-year-olds receiving the payments.
Swindon’s Jobcentres have been organising lots of employer engagement activity to help those able to work find suitable employment.
The Sector Based Work Academy Programme is said to be an effective way of employers working with benefit claimants who are interested in joining their organisations.
Recently, these programmes have been run with the Harvester restaurant chain, GXO Logistics on a monthly basis, and Thames Water.
Other employer engagement includes the hosting of an interview day within the Jobcentre to recruit G4S security guards, carry out job matching of customers to BGA Automotive, and an open day for the Savers retail chain which currently has vacancies for three roles.
In addition, the Army Reserves are recruiting 60 additional reservists and regularly attending Swindon’s Jobcentres to recruit them.
In the near future, Sodexo will be attending Spring Gardens House on Monday July 25 and Canal Walk’s Jobcentre on Tuesday July 26.
On these day,s they will be carrying out interviews for potential helpdesk operators and team leaders who will work for a high-profile blue light organisation.
Plus, intensive work continues to support both Afghan and Ukrainian re-settlers who have been forced to flee their homes and are now trying to find financial independence through work in the UK and get used to their fresh start in an unfamiliar society.
Sally Cook is the DWP employer and partnership manager for Swindon and Wiltshire.
She said: “The work being undertaken in Jobcentres currently to engage with employers and support people into work is fantastic.
“We have so much to offer employers and to join them up with our customers, to pave the way into sustainable employment and improve the quality of peoples’ lives.
“We are immensely proud of the support we can offer.”