Headlines: February 22nd, 2000

The Employment Service is re-focusing on its customers following a wide range review and consultation. As an Executive Agency of the Department for Education and Employment its task is to find work for people without jobs and to fill employers vacancies. As a result of asking employers, voluntary, public and private sector organisations and other Government Departments what they wanted from the Service a new vision and purpose for modernisation has been devised.Key features of the new vision are working in close partnership with a wide range of public, private and voluntary sectors, greater emphasis on equal opportunities and the use of new technology to deliver services.

Technology is radically changing the way the Agency delivers it services. In January 1999 it launched Employment Service Direct, the telephone helpline to supplements the work of 1000 Job Centres. In the first six months of operation it found jobs for 30,000 people.

Later this year it will launch the world’s first learning and work bank. This Internet portal will be the starting place for anyone who wants to explore both the jobs market and learning opportunities. The Agency’s internal jobs database will be accessible from the Internet. There will also be direct links to job vacancies carried by private agencies and newspapers. The site will give contact details so that Jobseekers will be able to phone potential employers direct. The service will be accessible through touch screen kiosks in jobcentres, supermarkets, doctors’ surgeries, pubs and cyber cafes.