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The Role of Skills in the Transition from Worklessness into Sustainable Jobs with Progression

Devins, David; Bickerstaffe, Tim; Nunn, Alex; Mitchell, Ben; McQuaid, Ronald W; Egdell, Valerie; Lindsay, Colin


David Devins

Tim Bickerstaffe

Alex Nunn

Ben Mitchell

Ronald W McQuaid

Valerie Egdell

Colin Lindsay


This study is shaped by the recognition that while there has been a great deal of policy development around the transition from unemployment and inactivity to employment over the last decade, policy has not been sufficiently informed about how best to nurture sustainable employment for those at risk of labour market exclusion. The review focused on evidence from 2005: it provides a review of data, UK and international literature and, incorporates findings from four international case studies (Australia, Germany, Denmark and the United States).
The report provides an overview of the economic context for low pay and low skilled work and highlights the need for a continuing commitment to promoting opportunities in the labour market as a means of progression and alleviating poverty and encouraging social mobility. The report argues that there is an inextricable link between skills and ‘better jobs’.
The authors conclude that a long-term view is required to decide how best to support someone at the point of worklessness: to address employability barriers in the short-term; and prepare the individual to retain, and progress in, employment. The concept of career is explored as a framework for progression: a combination of career guidance, a career / personal development plan and career management skills are identified as tools to raise aspiration and enable individual’s to take action once they are in work to support their own progression. Thinking about the workplace, the report reviews the evidence on the role of job design, line management and progression pathways in facilitating workplace learning as a route to progression.

Report Type Project Report
Publication Date 2011-09
Deposit Date Sep 30, 2011
Publicly Available Date Sep 30, 2011
Peer Reviewed Not Peer Reviewed
ISBN 978-1-906597-75-7
Keywords Employment; unemployment; labour market exclusion; low pay; low skills; training; poverty; government policy;
Public URL
Publisher URL
Contract Date Sep 30, 2011


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