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Celebrating the success of CEIS Ayrshire’s First 25+ Employability Hub

Posted in: Blog, News.

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After the success of our Youth Employment Hub, a programme that helps a cohort of 16 to 24-year-olds back into employment, the next stage in the evolution of the programme was to offer it to clients aged 25 and over.

The 25+ Employability Hub pilot took place from 17th May to 9th June and saw ten new clients join us in our new office in Irvine. Of the ten, seven were referred from Irvine Job Centre, with three being existing CEIS Ayrshire clients. Nine of them were long term unemployed.

Breaking Down Barriers and Building Confidence

In the first week of the course we got our clients acquainted with what to expect in the coming four weeks. Representatives from Irvine Job Centre and the local college provided some information on the kind of support that they can provide, whilst the college also highlighted courses that might be available to them.

We also discussed employment and what support is available for individuals with specific barriers. We delivered a Skills and Qualities workshop to help the clients identify their own skills and qualities and how to highlight these in a CV and cover letter.

Later in the week the clients took part in a Resilience workshop over a day and a half where we discussed five main topics – Strengths, Positivity, Mental Toughness, Mindset and Character. Clients were then asked to send a copy of their CV for review which we would evaluate independently in order to provide specific feedback later in the programme.

We looked at Effective Job Searching, the hidden job market and went on to deliver the Elevator Pitch and STAR Technique workshops to the group. We then discussed sector based accredited training that would be beneficial to the individuals. Each client chose a minimum of three online courses to complete during the hub.

Opening Doors and Creating Opportunities

The final two weeks began with a visit to an open day help by The Ayrshire Community Trust (TACT) in Saltcoats, where staff highlighted the volunteering opportunities available to clients.

We also addressed the best way to approach application forms, and offered training on interview skills, which included role playing. Alongside this, the clients all participated in sector-based industry accreditation via our TrainMe platform.

The hub came to a close with two employers and volunteer groups interviewing the clients for potential vacancies. This gave the clients an opportunity to really put all their learning from the past four weeks to the test by selling their skills and practicing their interview techniques in a real-life scenario.

A Successful Pilot

With the course complete, three of the clients had CVs that were of interest to local employers, opening the door to further employment opportunities with them. Two clients have secured interviews with employers, and another two have sent their CVs to employers regarding potential vacancies and are awaiting a reply.

All clients left with a complete or draft CV and together they have completed 16 accredited training courses, with the team following up on a one to one basis with those who have not yet completed their chosen training.

Feedback was positive from all clients, with some remarking:

“The course covers a wide range of things that will help people get back into work.”
“I have gained more confidence and learned about the help that there is out there.”
“The practice interviews have made me less nervous.”
“The Hub helped me to identify my personal skills and qualities as well as gaining confidence.”

Look out for more information on upcoming 25+ Employability Hubs in the near future.

If you’d like to participate in future hubs or find out more information about the other services that CEIS Ayrshire offer, visit their website.

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