Creating economic growth in Spelthorne, together!

How diverse is your workforce?

Through joining the committee to organise the recent Spelthorne Skills and Careers Fair we recently got to know Rebecca Denyer. Rebecca is the new Small Employer Adviser (SEA) for Staines.

The SEA role has recently been introduced to give Jobcentre Plus (JCP) the extra opportunity to connect with small local employers – in particular to raise awareness of the range of support available to them when employing a person with a long term health condition or disability.

As you might be aware,  there are approximately 7 million people (18% of the UK population) who are disabled or have a health condition. Increasing the employment rate for this demographic is important for productivity as well as equity. It’s estimated that the UK economy could grow by £13 billion if disabled people were included. Additionally, £1.8 billion is lost by businesses every month because people with disabilities leave because that business is not accessible in some way?

There are real benefits be made for small businesses from having a diverse workforce that reflects the community they do business in. Part of Rebecca’s role is to challenge the presumption that this demographic cannot or do not want to work and that the process of supporting people into work is costly and complex. However, she does recognise that small businesses face particular pressures and do not have HR departments that can support making recruitment and the workplace more accessible. As a result JCP needs to provide additional support to small businesses for them to benefit.

Rebecca would really like to discuss this further with SBF businesses. Please do get in touch with her directly if you would like to know more:

Rebecca Denyer – Small Employer Adviser – Surrey
Department for Work and Pensions  | Work Services Directorate
Berkshire, Surrey and Sussex  | Staines Jobcentre Plus
Ground Floor | 62 London Road | Staines | TW18 4HB
Phone 01784 231637 or 07769 913696 | @JCPinSurrey on Twitter  | www.gov.uk |

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