New England Seafood is a fish processing business in Chessington on the outskirts of London. In the past it has relied for its permanent factory staff on conversion of temporary labour to permanent employees after a 12-week trial period.
|This is detrimental to the business as due to poor availability of unskilled temporary labour locally a large proportion of these workers are located in Slough (30 miles from the factory). Additionally, due to changes in the UK economy there is a high proportion of young people in the UK who are unemployed.
The objectives of this strategy have benefits both for New England Seafood and for the local area.
1. The ability to recruit local younger workers enables NES to reduce the risks caused by having a high proportion of its employees living 30 miles from its site and results in increased loyalty of employees with short travelling time to work.
2. Offering training and employment opportunities to young people who have been out of work for an extended period is of benefit to the local area by reducing unemployment and stimulating the local economy.
Outcome and achievements
Since the scheme started with Kingston Job Centre in December 2013, NES has run four training programmes and employed 13 long term unemployed people of whom six are younger workers. The current programme which is underway has five workers on it of which three are younger workers. One of the young workers has become a Works Committee Representative and another has moved on to a formal apprenticeship process.
The costs to NES are largely in terms of time and support from the HR team and the factory managers. There is a cost for each scheme of hiring an offsite training room for one week at £500.