Redhill Jobcentre became the only shortlisted finalist in the South East of England, for Jobcentre of the Year Award after being nominated by Surrey Choices for the Employment Related Services Association (ERSA) EmployAbility Awards 2020.
The nomination was made as a result of Surrey Choices’ strong relationship with Redhill Jobcentre. Having worked with each other for over 10 years, both organisations have formed a reliable, long-term relationship whilst seeking the best job opportunities for Surrey Choices’ EmployAbility service, where disabled people are supported to find and apply for jobs.
Surrey Choices staff over the years have been successful in finding employment opportunities for the people they support, with the help of dedicated staff at Redhill Jobcentre. Redhill Jobcentre staff have gone above and beyond their call of duty, ensuring that disabled people who visit the Jobcentre feel comfortable and in control of the environment around them. From creating Easy Read brochures for people to read in advance of their visit which helps them visualise the building and rooms, to creating staff boards showing all members of staff so people can see who they might speak to when they visit Redhill Jobcentre. All of these efforts have gone a long way in improving the experience for the people Surrey Choices supports and there is no doubt that these actions have contributed to a successful employment rate.
Alongside this, Redhill Jobcentre staff have all had training in supporting disabled and autistic people. They have presented at the county wide Autism Partnership Board, speaking about the commitments they have made at Redhill to encourage other people to feel more comfortable in seeking employment
Surrey Choices staff have worked at the Redhill Jobcentre for the duration of their partnership, hot desking on a daily basis as well as hosting Job Clubs every Monday at the Redhill Jobcentre. The opportunity to work within the jobcentre as well as run job clubs for the people they support is another way in which Redhill Jobcentre strives in being a disability friendly Jobcentre.
Christina Earl, Head of Innovation and Business Development told us:
“It was really important for us to find a very good link with a job centre who understands the needs of the people we support. Lucy the Disability Employment Advisor created fantastic Easy Read Guides, hosted events for families and Carers and the whole staff team’s commitment to educating employers in being Disability Confident reflects they really do everything they can to support us and the people we work with.”
Someone supported by Surrey Choices who has successfully been employed with the help of Redhill Job Centre said:
“Jobcentre’s can be scary places to visit, especially if you have a disability where new places can make you nervous. Redhill does an amazing job of making everyone feel welcome and get the support they need.”
Congratulations to Redhill Jobcentre on being shortlisted and we wish them the best of luck for the Employment Related Services Association (ERSA) EmployAbility Awards 2020.