Turning Point comments on National Audit Office report on the Work Programme

News item posted: 19 June 2017

Commenting on the National Audit Office report on the Work Programme, Turning  Point's Director of Employment Services, John Mallalieu said: "Turning Point shares the Work Programme's vision of supporting individuals in finding long-term employment, but the National Audit Office's report highlights some issues with it's implementation.

"Rolling out the Work Programme in the current economic climate, poses some problems.  As things stand, the majority of people with the highest needs are still waiting to be assessed for eligibility. This means that people are living in uncertainty without having their needs addressed, which has the potential to exacerbate their problems.

"Where large Prime contractors don't have the knowledge to correctly utilise sub contractors and the financial incentives lead to a natural focus on those closest to the job market, those most in need of specialist support are likely to be dangerously over-looked.

"Some people are being put onto the Work Programme prematurely, or not being referred on to specialist providers.  This can mean they are not getting the right support.  It is also resulting in financial difficulty for some specialist sub-contractors.

"The Work Programme can still 'work', but these aspects need to be addressed before they become detrimental to it's overall success."