Scotland's Devolved Employment Services: statistical summary November 2019

Statistics to the end of September 2019 cover the first eighteen months of Fair Start Scotland (FSS), which launched in April 2018, and the fifteen months of the Health and Work Support Pilot (HAWS), which launched in June 2018.

Summary findings

Work First Scotland closed in July 2019, and Work Able Scotland closes in November 2019, so commentary on the services have been removed from publications. Statistics on both services are still available in the Excel tables (Tables 17 to 36) which accompany the publication. The last publication to contain commentary was published in May 2019[1]

Experimental Statistics: we want your views

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The scope of this statistical series has expanded since the first publication in December 2017, as new devolved services have launched and more data becomes available to publish as the services mature.

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  • 26,333 unemployed people were referred to Fair Start Scotland (FSS) in the first 18 months of the service, and 16,130 (61%) of those joined. The proportion of people joining from referrals made to FSS was lower when it launched (48% in the first quarter) but has increased since and was 65% in the most recent quarter[2].
  • 4,126 people started a job after joining FSS, of whom 2,080 had sustained employment for at least 13 weeks, 1,062 for at least 26 weeks and 276 for 52 weeks. There are lower numbers for longer job outcomes - many people have not been in the service long enough yet to achieve them.
  • Almost everyone in the first quarter of starts (those joining FSS between launch to the end of June 2018) has had enough time to reach a 13 week job outcome. 22% have done so. So far, 72% of those reaching a 13 week job outcome have gone on to sustain employment for 26 weeks and 34% for 52 weeks. 52% of those who started left the service early, without completing the support offered or achieving a job outcome.
  • FSS participants can have various barriers to work but their health is the most commonly mentioned barrier to returning to work[3]. Two in three people joining FSS reported a long-term health condition and half reported a disability. Mental health conditions were the most commonly reported (38% of all long-term health conditions). Compared with the profile of those joining, participants reporting no long-term health conditions or little limitation achieved higher proportions of job outcomes, whereas those reporting a lot of limitation achieved lower proportions of job outcomes.
  • The Health & Work Support Pilot in Dundee and Fife has received 1,913 referrals since launch at the end of June 2018. Of these, 1,774 were enrolled in to NHS led case management support. In the most recent quarter, 432 people were referred and 417 of these subsequently enrolled. This represents a 6% decrease in referrals and a 2% decrease in enrolments from the last quarter.



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