About the sector

The employment related services sector delivers services to help improve the employability of the nation's jobseekers and future jobseekers, plus those who wish to progress in work.

Organisations delivering services are sometimes called providers and include large charities, small specialist organisations, local authorities, housing associations, health institutions and private sector  organisations. The sector is diverse and providers may be from the private, voluntary, social enterprise or public sectors.

The sector is funded from a range of sources, including central government, local authorities, European Funding, the Big Lottery Fund, trusts, foundations and organisation's own funds.  One of the biggest purchasers of employment services used to be the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) which funds schemes such as the Work and Health Programme, Job Entry Targeted Support (JETS) and currently being commissioned the Restart Programme.  However, funding for specialist provision from this source has decreased. Now, a wider range of funders are important to the sector, including the Scottish Government, Greater Manchester Combined Authority and the Big Lottery Fund.   

Providers deliver a wide range of services targeted at helping individuals overcome their barriers to employment. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Careers advice and guidance
  • CV and jobsearch support
  • Sourcing job vacancies with employers
  • Advice and support for job interviews
  • Work experience and placements
  • Training and skills support
  • Housing and benefits advice
  • Business start-up advice
  • In-work support

Many providers of services in the sector specialise in a particular group of jobseekers, such as young people leaving school or those not in employment, education or training (NEET), jobseekers with disabilities, health conditions or other barriers to gaining and maintaining decent work such as homeless jobseekers or those who have been in touch with the justice system. 

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