National employers have been urged to find out how Universal Credit can boost their business as
companies across the country say they have found it easier to recruit under UC.
The Employment Minister*, Damian Hinds is encouraging employers to consider the business benefits of Universal Credit as they embark on the New Year.
In contrast to the old benefits system, UC benefit payments reduce gradually the more someone earns. This means people can keep more of what they earn and take on more hours without worrying about losing their benefits and allows employers to take on more staff or flexible workers as their business expands.
Damian Hinds said:
“Business across the country have told us it’s far easier to recruit claimants in receipt of Universal Credit than those on the old system. That’s because UC removes the rigid rules and barriers that could prevent people moving into work, or taking on extra hours. As more people move onto Universal Credit, it’s really important that more employers understand the benefits it can bring to businesses.”
Universal Credit helps businesses by:
- Making it easier to fill vacancies – jobseekers getting Universal Credit can take on short-term contracts and irregular work without complicating their claim or risking losing their UC payment.
- Being able to offer extra hours to existing part-time employees on UC when their business needs it, eliminating the need to recruit and train new or agency workers.
- Giving access to a larger pool of job applicants, many of whom are already registered on the Universal Jobmatch service, helping to fill vacancies faster.
Jobcentre Plus managers asked employers in areas where Universal Credit Full Service is rolled out the difference in recruiting they had experienced under UC compared to the old system. The majority of businesses said there were improvements in:
- filling posts for ‘longer’ part-time working involving over 16 hours per week;
- filling posts that involve working fewer than 16 hours per week;
- job candidates being prepared to take on short-term or casual work.
Universal Credit replaces the six main out-of-work benefits with one, simple monthly payment. It is available across the country to all new single jobseekers and is now being rolled out securely to more people, including families.
*Hinds has since been promoted to Education Secretary since writing this piece
Rebecca joined the HRreview editorial team in January 2016. After graduating from the University of Sheffield Hallam in 2013 with a BA in English Literature, Rebecca has spent five years working in print and online journalism in Manchester and London. In the past she has been part of the editorial teams at Sleeper and Dezeen and has founded her own arts collective.