Scotland Performs Update

Scottish Government performance information

National Outcome: We realise our full economic potential with more and better employment opportunities for our people.

Work Able Scotland and Work First Scotland Transitional Employment Services


  • Work Able Scotland and Work First Scotland are one of the first uses of further devolution powers stemming from the Scotland Act 2016.
  • The services provide support for individuals furthest from the labour market including people with a health condition, at risk of long term unemployment, and for Work First Scotland, individuals with a disability.
  • The services, in their delivery, are completely voluntary and have provided people with an assurance that they will not be sanctioned as a result of non-participation, the ambition being that the services are seen as an opportunity, and not a threat.
  • The transitional services will help to support up to 4,800 individuals into better employment outcomes.


  • Up to £19.2m has been invested in the transitional services with full costs dependent on providers moving individuals into work.


  • The Scottish Government published information on the performance of the services on 6 December 2017.
  • The services are already supporting the overriding ambition to deliver employment services that help to support people into sustainable jobs.
  • The services have been delivered on a voluntary basis reflecting the wider approach of ensuring that principles of dignity and respect are embedded within the public services the Scottish Government delivers.
  • Even at this early stage in development it is clear that the approach is supporting people into job outcomes with the December publication showing that at the mid-way point of the service, which aims to support up to 4,800 people through Work First Scotland and Work Able Scotland, 72% of that figure has been reached. services.

Key partners

  • Skills Development Scotland
  • Department for Work and Pensions
  • Service Providers.


  • Work Able Scotland was managed and delivered by Skills Development Scotland ( SDS). The delivery of this service involved close working relationships with SDS and the Department for Work and Pensions ( DWP) to ensure that procedures were in place to support individual’s entry onto the programme. This has involved close working of key delivery partners at a local level which will be taken forward and replicated in the development of the full service Fair Start Scotland which will be delivered from April 2018.
  • For Work First Scotland, the management of services was delivered by the Scottish Government working closely with service providers. This was to ensure that the delivery embedded an holistic approach to individuals’ needs, built on a supportive coaching relationship with a dedicated case manager and coordinated access to skills and health support.

Contribution to National Outcomes

  • The services are already providing and delivering for those further from the labour market.
  • By helping to support those individuals into better employment outcomes, the Scottish Government is helping to tackle deep rooted inequalities in communities.
  • The distinctly Scottish approach to delivery is helping to ensure that individuals feel supported into appropriate employment outcomes.
  • The ethos of public services is evolving through learning lessons from the transitional programmes which will then be translated into the five year service Fair Start Scotland.

The project contributes towards other National Outcomes, such as:

  • We have tackled the significant inequalities in Scottish society.
  • We have strong, resilient and supportive communities where people take responsibility for their own actions and how they affect others.
  • Our public services are high quality, continually Improving, efficient and responsive to local people's needs.


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