When Robert was referred to Prevista’s Work Programme provision in December 2013 he had been unemployed and claiming Jobseekers Allowance for over five years. Despite English being his second language and his low self-esteem, he was determined to get into security work. Prevista paired him up with our Employment Adviser, Yasmin Marcham who recalls:
“After years of claiming benefits Robert’s self-confidence was naturally low. However he had the advantage that he had a clear goal and a determination to enter employment”.
As a first step, Yasmin found Robert a free Close Protection Level 3 Security qualification. The application process required a cover letter so Yasmin worked closely with Robert to produce a letter detailing his skills and experience. Whilst he completed his qualification Yasmin helped Robert improve his CV and worked with him to produce a generic cover letter that could be adapted for security vacancies. Even more importantly she advised Robert about the ‘Hidden Jobs Market’ and helped him to understand that applying for jobs is about more than responding to advertisements. Yasmin explains:
“Security work is very competitive and vacancies attract hundreds of applicants. I encouraged Robert to look beyond newspaper and web adverts. I coached him on the basics of networking, encouraged him to speak to his friends and his community about his job search in case they knew of any opportunities and I taught him how to effectively cold call companies that may have vacancies. I encouraged him to offer his services on a voluntary basis to develop experience and make himself more employable”.
Robert completed his Level 3 qualification in February 2014 and quickly started to send out speculative letters offering his services to potential employers. Within a week he had a positive response and started part-time employment. On his days off Robert continued to come in to Prevista offices to receive further job coaching to work on his self-esteem and ensure he sustained his job. Within one month he had been offered full time employment, which he has now sustained for over six months. Robert remains immensely grateful to Prevista for the support he has received:
“Without Yasmin’s help I would not have found my job. I am so happy and grateful to be working after so long. Now I can support myself and my family, it has completely changed my life”.
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