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Looking for a job? We can help

If you're currently unemployed, facing redundancy or looking to get back into work, we can help.

We are offering residents a free skills for employment scheme or online 'job club' run by local experts the Stuart Mitchell Group. The sessions cover a range of topics from CV workshops to one-to-one mentoring, even advice on how to tap into the 'hidden job market' while building on your own qualities, skills and strengths to help you with the next step in your career or even enterprise or volunteering.

Following a highly successful pilot scheme where of the 12 who took part in the two week programme, three have already been offered jobs, we are now offering 50 free places to jobseekers aged 18+, with support guaranteed from Thursday 22 October through to 31 March 2021. From 1 April 2021, we plan to launch a full-year programme supporting at least another 100 residents. We can also help school leavers and graduates get involved with the new "KickStart" scheme for 16-24 year olds. If you are interested in finding out more about our online job club or KickStart please email business@guildford.gov.uk.

In addition to a package of excellent resources and training, the scheme boasts a bespoke community forum for those involved to support each other. Last month's pilot programme had some excellent feedback:

"There is a good mix of teaching and discussion in an informal, friendly and supportive environment. This has helped me to have a more positive mindset. The online community platform and being able to contact others for advice, the opportunity to practise using Zoom before a potential interview and the chance to interact with a variety of people has been great."

"The teaching platform and online training has completely changed my mindset, I no longer think I'm too old to change professions but can go to University to study for a new career." 

Cllr John Redpath, Lead Councillor for the Economy said: "We need to actively support our local economy in every way we can and this online job club is just one way in which we will help our residents and businesses with practical advice to help them navigate the current challenges we are all facing following the pandemic. The statistics are bleak, almost one in seven people in the UK could be jobless by the end of this year with global job losses predicted to be like the 1930s. It is so sad to see local companies such as Alexander Dennis (ADL), the UK's largest bus and coach builder who made our impressive electric bus fleet, cut 200 jobs at their Guildford plant and we've had a number of shop closures across the High Street. Initiatives like this demonstrate our commitment to supporting our residents with direct help and shows how collaborating with key partners and local agencies can benefit local people."

Stuart Mitchell, Co-Founder of Stuart Mitchell and Co Ltd, the firm who are running our online job club says: "The aim of the scheme is to provide support and learning opportunities to show the numerous ways you find your next job or look at the option of a career change and we also provide assistance with re-training. Job hunters can no longer rely on the traditional methods of applying for jobs through a recruitment agency and online. The 'hidden' job market is an area that job hunters need to be utilising - using your own personal network and social media channels to search for jobs, and cold calling. We need to remember that when searching for a job it is not just skills and experience which are important to a potential employer but also an applicant's personality, interests and attitudes, and whether they are a good fit for both the role and the company. We know that some people are taking a positive view and have always had a dream of setting up their own business or re-training to start a completely different career. We are here to help and provide the skills and advice needed to seek out these opportunities."

The scheme will focus on how skills can be adapted and transferred between employers and business sectors along with collaboration opportunities through referrals and partnerships, working with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), Jobcentre Plus, local employers and employer organisations such as Surrey Chambers of Commerce and the Federation of Small Businesses.

From 1 April 2021, we will launch an annual programme to provide support for at least 100 members.

There are also a number of Job Support schemes available including the Job Centre's Rapid Response Scheme which provides support to both employers and individuals facing redundancy. Government bodies such as the National Careers Service can provide support and guidance to help individuals make decisions on learning, training and work. The free online service will help those looking for work learn more about their skills and match these skills to a potential new career. Job profiles are available to give individuals a true picture of specific job roles. There are also a wide variety of online courses offered by the service to help with learning new skills or e-training for a new career. For more information, visit https://nationalcareers.service.gov.uk/.

By law, you must now self-isolate if asked to by NHS Test and Trace.  If self-isolation is currently stopping you from working during this period, you may be able to claim a £500 support payment. Please visit the website with the Test and Trace ID number, a copy of your latest bank statement and proof of employment or self-employment. For more details visit our £500 Self Isolation Payment page.

Published on Wednesday 14 October.