February 2023


Fair Chance programme unlocking opportunities for employers and recruits

"I would definitely encourage all companies to look at the Fair Chance Programme and how it will benefit their business."

An employment programme created last year to support inclusive recruitment across Warwickshire continues to go from strength to strength.

In the first nine months of the Warwickshire Fair Chance Employment Programme, 30 employers registered their businesses. Already in 2023, six more employers have seen the benefits of the programme and signed up to work with the Warwickshire Skills Hub team to create inclusive roles that fit the needs of both their business and their employees.

The concept of the programme is to support businesses to become more inclusive and flexible in their recruitment. This may be something as simple as making the application process easier to access, or the interview more relaxed to accommodate those who may struggle with a more formal approach. Or it may be adjusting a job role to adapt to the employee's physical needs or family commitments.

During this year the programme will expand to also meet the needs of other jobseekers such as over 50s and new resettlement communities from Ukraine and Afghanistan, along with ex-armed forces personnel and their families looking for careers outside the Armed Forces. With access to many talent pools, the Fair Chance Programme gives both employers and jobseekers a unique opportunity to find a role that works for them.

Among Fair Chance Employers is TSOS Group, a Rugby-based online collective of businesses who deliver bespoke expertise to other like-minded businesses. At TSOS the emphasis is very much on collaboration, not just with their clients and partners but with their staff. It’s all about supporting others to thrive and co-founders Tracey Coetzee and Stefan Frater lead with a passion to help as many people as possible.

When they signed up to the Government's Kickstart Scheme, they saw it as a chance not to gain free labour, but an opportunity to help young people struggling to find a profession. With help from Rugby College, they began with one placement, then two... before long, TSOS were developing nine young adults through the scheme.

The venture was so successful they also signed up to Fair Chance to expand the support. This gave them access to funding for two apprenticeships and two traineeships for their young employees with additional needs including ADHD, autism and social challenges.

Tracey is delighted with how well the Fair Chance Programme has worked in their business and is very proud of all the staff who have grown and developed under the scheme. TSOS are keen to continue providing support and employment for people who may struggle to find paid work through the usual channels. With the help of Fair Chance, they are currently looking at recruiting two additional members of staff to employ and train.

Tracey said: "It is so important for employers to see the value of an individual rather than trying to fit them into a set role. We need to embrace their personal qualities and how that enhances the whole team. I would definitely encourage all companies to look at the Fair Chance Programme and how it will benefit their business."

Any Warwickshire employers who would like to know more about the Fair Chance Programme, please contact us at fairchance@warwickshire.gov.uk. Our specialist advisors will soon be in touch to arrange a meeting.


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