The latest news on unemployment, employment, benefits and the economy. Find out who’s hiring, who’s firing, changes to benefits, the unemployment rate and everything that’s new in our world.

More than a third of zero-hours employees want more work

Tue, 26/11/2013 - 11:19 -- nick

38% of employees on zero hour contracts want more work, a survey has found.

Carried out by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), the poll found that many workers wanted more hours than they were given.

It also found that around one-in-five was penalised if they were unavailable for work, suggesting that the arrangement does not always offer the flexibility and fairness some believe.

IDS targets seriously ill for benefit and support cuts

Mon, 25/11/2013 - 12:29 -- nick

Hated Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith is to target some of the most seriously ill benefit claimants for cuts.

They include people with cancer and other life-threatening illnesses.

Smith is proposing to  dump the work-related activity group (WRAG), which provides support including training and interview practice to those who are deemed fit-to-work with help.

550,000 people are in this group, and half have got back into work within three years despite their issues, but this is considered insufficient.

Gove calls UK benefits 'generous' as EU citizens denied access

Mon, 25/11/2013 - 11:49 -- nick

Education Secretary Michael Gove has called the British benefits system "generous" while denying EU citizens access to it.

Speaking on Sunday's Andrew Marr Show on BBC1, Gove defended David Cameron's stance, which will extend the qualifying period for European people from three months to one year.

Gove said Mr Cameron had "struck exactly the right note on migration, which is to celebrate the achievements of the people who've come here, to recognise migration has to work for people who are already here - from whatever background".

Toynbee calls for young to vote to improve job prospects

Fri, 22/11/2013 - 12:22 -- nick

A column in today's Guardian by Polly Toynbee calls for young people to use their votes together to improve their job prospects and the way the government treats them.

The failure of the government's youth contract, a lack of apprenticeships, and many companies not doing their bit means the queue of young unemployed would stretch from London to Middlesbrough.

The number of youngsters unemployed for more than two years has gone up more than 300%, and they are being sanctioned more often as the government appears to be using this as a way of cutting the benefit bill.

More jobs lost as tube and council dump hundreds

Thu, 21/11/2013 - 18:11 -- nick

Today was a bleak day for UK jobs as three major employers announced the loss of thousands of posts.

London Underground plans to dump 750 workers as it will shut all its ticket offices by 2015.

This came despite an earlier promise by London Mayor Boris Johnson that he planned to keep all offices open to help passengers feel safer.

Services on some lines will run all night at weekends, meaning safety may become more of an issue.

This was highlighted by RMT General Secretary Bob Crow, who said:

Weekly jobs board - where to look for work now

Thu, 21/11/2013 - 13:09 -- nick

It is still very difficult to find work in many areas, with more than 50 jobseekers chasing each job in some places.

But some employers are hiring, and the weekly jobs board brings together the biggest of them.

Supermarket giant Sainsbury's has just announced its Christmas recruitment drive - it needs 16,000 more people. This could be a great way into work, as companies often take on permanent staff from their seasonal intake.

Go to Sainsbury's Jobs

Half of graduates now working in low skilled jobs

Tue, 19/11/2013 - 12:19 -- nick

Nearly half of graduates are working in low skilled jobs, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

A big rise in the number going to university means more are chasing high paid and high skilled work, but the figures suggest the jobs market hasn't grown to accomodate them.

In 2001 37% of graduates were doing non-graduate jobs, but this year that figure is 47%.

Higher benefits don't demotivate jobseekers - study

Mon, 18/11/2013 - 13:31 -- nick

Countries that pay their unemployed people higher benefits do not see a rise in a lack of motivation, a study has found.

Edinburgh University researchers examined 28 European countries in detail and showed that there was no connection between the level of benefit payments and jobseekers' dissatisfaction with being unemployed.

Those in Luxembourg and Finland were in the highest-income quarter of claimants but in the bottom quarter for life satisfaction, while those in Poland and Romania were among the poorest but were some of the least affected.

Government launches consultation on sanctions - we want your views

Mon, 18/11/2013 - 11:16 -- nick

The government wants your views on the way it hands out sanctions within its Work Programme and similar schemes.

It has appointed Matthew Oakley as an independent reviewer to find out what those affected think of the issue.

Unsurprisingly, Oakley is a supporter of the Work Programme; in a Guardian article he wrote in March about the Cait Reilly/Poundland case he said:

50,000 disabled people could lose jobs over benefit changes

Fri, 15/11/2013 - 13:42 -- nick

More than 50,000 disabled people could lose their jobs as a result of benefit changes - and this could cost the country hundreds of millions of pounds.

The government is planning reductions in disability mobility payments, and many people use these to get them to and from work.