Welfare to Work

ERSA releases early indicative performance figures for the Work Programme




3 February 2012



ERSA releases early indicative performance figures for the Work Programme


The Employment Related Services Association (ERSA), the trade association for the welfare to work industry, today provides the first indicative performance figures for the Work Programme.


Based on data from some of the largest prime contractors of the Work Programme, ERSA figures show that between 18% and 23% of customers who were referred to the Work Programme in June 2011 have already started employment, meaning that one in five customers have already found a job.


Welfare to work providers of the Work Programme have up to two years to help people to gain employment, which means that a figure of around 20% is broadly in line with provider expectations at this stage of the programme.   This compares favourably with the National Audit Office expectations of provider performance released last week, given that around one in five Work Programme customers referred to the programme in June had already found jobs after just six months.


ERSA chief executive, Kirsty McHugh, said:


‘We welcome these early indicative figures of Work Programme performance levels.  The welfare to work industry is working extremely hard to help all customers find sustainable work even in the context of challenging economic conditions.  Although it is far too early to draw firm conclusions on likely performance levels across the life of the contracts, these early figures show that the welfare to work industry is making a real difference to people’s lives.


Clearly, however, the economy is a cause for concern.  ERSA will therefore be tracking provider performance and working with the Department for Work and Pensions to ensure that the Work Programme continues to deliver benefit to all customers. ‘



Notes to Editors


ERSA is the trade association for the welfare to work industry. Established in 2005, by the industry for the industy, it exists to help members achieve their shared goal – to help people achieve sustainable work.  ERSA’s membership ranges from large multinational corporations to small specialist charities. It represents over 90 percent of those organisations that have been awarded prime contracts for the Work Programme, plus a larger number of subcontractors. Approximately half its members are third sector organisations.

Press enquiries should be directed to Kirsty McHugh at kirsty.mchugh@ersa.org.uk or 07932 792 435.


  1. Under the labour venture known as FND (flexi new deal programme) the total figures produced by nat stats stated that no provider got above 30% in any part of the country, Translated means monumental failure when you inspect the actual figures (per head).
    So 20% is about what i would expect to see about now on the work programme when you factor increases in unemployment and less vacancies.

    They want to give percentages as the per head figure would make for embarressing reading. Currently then this 20% would mean that the work programme is about as effective as the FND programme which this coalition may i say got rid of dew to its lack of success.

    This aside however, it would be lovely to get this programme right as the current method of no help and a dot on every 2 weeks doesnt help man or nor beast.

    People may choose to not believe me but wait a little for nat stats to release the figures as they didnt fix the FND ones so why the latest and just because the providers cannot release info proves nothing although like everybody in every micromanaged environment does cook the books as so to speak. This however made no difference to the final figures when we consider the ones for FND so again what difference will it make now?

  2. I would be very interested to see the actual figures, this totally flies in the face of information previously seen by many people.

    The work programme is a complete failure, how many full time jobs have been found instead of putting unemployed people into work placement in jobs where no wages are paid, it’s all a huge con and it will all come out very soon…

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