Fair Start Scotland evaluation report 2: overview of year one - November 2019

Second report in a series on the evaluation of Fair Start Scotland employability services. It covers the first full year of service delivery (Mar 18 - Apr 19) and summarises findings from a participant phone survey, local area case studies and analysis of management information.

9. Reflections & Next Steps

Overall, performance across the first year of FSS service delivery has been positive for the vast majority involved. This evaluation has provided clear and robust evidence of the high quality of support experienced by the vast majority of FSS participants.

Participants have reported a range of benefits arising from the FSS support they’ve experienced. The most commonly cited are improvements to both their confidence and overall wellbeing. Through this evaluation, FSS participants have told us that they feel they are treated with dignity and respect, and that they are participating in genuinely personalised services that make a positive difference to their lives.

FSS providers are each building their own unique FSS offer, in partnership with other local delivery organisations, including Jobcentres, local authorities and third sector partners, to deliver a wide range of bespoke support for some of Scotland’s most vulnerable unemployed people. The Scottish Government and FSS service providers will continue to drive improvement in response to evaluation findings and operational performance feedback. Current continuous improvement actions are highlighted in the first FSS Annual Report, due to be published along with this evaluation.

In the spirit of “test and learn”, we recognise where there is scope to improve FSS services to support the most vulnerable, particularly people with no qualifications; people from minority ethnic communities; people who have been unemployed for more than five years and people with health conditions that limit their day-to-day activities.

As we move into the implementation of No One Left Behind, we will also be collaborating with local government, DWP/ JCP and the third sector to integrate and align employability support more effectively at a local level.

The next FSS evaluation report is due in Autumn 2020 and will explore FSS delivery on the ground in three further local case study areas, will hear directly from participants, providers and partners about their FSS experiences and will provide further detail on the nature of FSS pre-employment and in-work support.

More detailed reports on the evaluation research are also published alongside this Overview report and are available on the Scottish Government website:

Fair Start Scotland Evaluation Report 2: Local area case studies (year 1)

Fair Start Scotland Evaluation Report 2: Participant phone survey (year 1)


Email: kirstie.corbett@gov.scot

Back to top