DYW Outer Hebrides was approached by Comhairle nan Eilean Siar to assist in addressing pressing recruitment concerns in the local care sector.
A plan for the promotion of job opportunities at a new care home development in Stornoway was presented to Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, human resources and social care staff with a particular focus on in person events and conversations with the public.
As part of the implementation of this plan DYW Outer Hebrides arranged 3 open days and one evening session in Stornoway Town Hall.
During these sessions Comhairle nan Eilean Siar care staff were joined by partners from Skills Development Scotland, Department of Work and Pensions, UHI Outer Hebrides and the Council’s Human Resources and training departments.
DYW Coordinators initially contacted the two local secondary schools but given the immediacy of the recruitment concerns the decision was taken to expand the recruitment events to the public as well as senior phase school pupils.
In detailed discussions with interested parties, it was suggested that face to face contact with individuals could provide a significant boost to application numbers from individuals with barriers to employment.
Over the three open days and drop-in evening sessions staff spoke to individuals who had felt unable to apply for jobs in the past because of language, personal circumstances, and confidence.
One individual had difficulties reading and writing in English, as a single parent from a minority ethnic background they were eligible for support through the Parental Employability Support Fund.
Within two days this individual had been enrolled as a PESF participant and with support from a PESF training officer, Health and Social Care staff member and translation assistance from their daughter applications for two open job opportunities were completed.
This referral to PESF was one of three referrals of the back of the event (2 PESF and 1 Young Person’s Guarantee). The individual referred to Employability Fund was a 15 year-old who had been unable to complete exams and attend school as a result of bullying.
Lacking in confidence the young person was unable to attend the event but their mother was able to speak with care home staff and CNES employability staff with arrangements made for discussions on a paid work experience placement.
As well as individuals who were referred to programmes the event also provided an opportunity to coach individuals through the job application process. In collaboration with SDS, CNES Human Resources staff and CNES Training Staff DYW Outer Hebrides helped ensure individuals met every essential requirement possible.