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Time is Ticking

That's the message from my adviser today. I'm not entirely sure what it means. Seems a bit silly to say to someone that you must get a job sooner rather than later if they are going to then end up spending all of that precious time in a crap-ass job. Isn't there a contradiction in there somewhere? Of course you might find a non crap-ass job, which is great and good luck to you if you do. But that isn't really very likely these days is it; certainly not through the JC whose awful systems don't really help people in that regard.
Time is ticking. I have to do something and soon. Of course the reality is that if I don't it's the Work Programme for me which, I'm sure, she can tell I'm not happy about. Hardly surprising when the process is little more than passing me off to someone else to deal with. These people can't magic up jobs and, in my experience (and certainly loads of others, it seems, even if anecdotal), aren't interested in actually helping people find something positive.
So the interview was, perhaps relatively, benign other than the impetus to get me doing something. But the problem is the system. Everything that was discussed (it's not really discussed as you have next to no say in any of it ultimately) was filtered through the DWP's perception. I have had really no feedback from employers, which most people know is now the norm these days, so that is then counted as a bad thing for me. The reality, that the economic and labour market conditions are dire, is ignored as something beyond my control or the JC.
To that end I was persuaded to change my JSAg; instead of 'General Office', which wasn't getting the right results (because of the lack of interest from employers deluged with all sorts of better applicants) to 'Customer Service' with the proviso (thankfully) of no call centre work. I really don't see the difference. I agreed to it just to appease the situation as you have to at least be seen to play the game - and it is a game really. My move, your move.
So the categorisation and storage systems used by the JC job database has put me in this position, of making me look like I'm at best struggling and at worst lazy. In either case it's my 'fault'. But the system cannot deal with the reality of what's going on out there. I don't get interviews because I have no experience and am forced to pick categories I've no interest in and because there are thousands of better suited applicants. Beyond that, as we all know, a lot of these jobs are just bollocks: scams from agencies or little more than phishing trips designed to fatten their databases with no real jobs, or zero hour contracts, or some other unsuitable and unsustainable work, at best casual. I am again encouraged to think about voluntary work (assuming that I don't of course, which shows their attitude once again because I do). Unfortunately there isn't anything suitable (I don't feel up to sitting with rape victims or caring for people with really serious problems) beyond rattling tins or working in a charity shop. That's not what I want to do, and so I just look lazy. That's the filter again, the lens through which the system views you. I tried to explain that the issues I have are 'medical' and as such I need the right kind of help: therapy, medical treatment, if you like, counselling - whatever. But because the DWP can't provide this or can only offer useless alternatives (I turned down a chat with the Disability Adviser because she's not a doctor, she can't address these issues, and I'm sick of traipsing into that place), I'm seen as not moving forward and not doing anything.
Even the subject of working from home, which I said would be agreeable, was then turned around. At first this seemed like a good idea, which the adviser even brought up (I've considered it before anyway, though finding homework is next to impossible), then she started to equivocate by saying it would leave me more isolated. Well which is it? Working from home would be a place to start surely; why should I need to work with other people for that to be considered valid? There's no guarantee other people I work with won't be people I don't want to associate with anyway, and there's nothing more lonely than being alone in a crowd. A trivial point, but it's valid nonetheless: if you're going to criticise homeworking for this then the possibility of isolating experiences in a traditional workplace are just as valid.
In the end the processes are just flawed. The system is the problem, but there is no will to change this except to make it even more so.
The appointment was pleasant enough, but the attitude of the DWP system shines through nonetheless. A system that is out of touch, inflexible and holds you in an unbalanced power relationship. Time is ticking.


  1. Well, I'm already on the work programme and I've been told by my personal adviser that "I really need to get an interview in the next two weeks." Oh, all right then...

  2. That's what these people are like. It's the system. Any fool can say 'you need to get an interview', but the reality is quite different for some. But they think if person a can get interviews then so can everyone else.

  3. "Of course the reality is that if I don't it's the Work Programme for me which, I'm sure, she can tell I'm not happy about. Hardly surprising when the process is little more than passing me off to someone else to deal with. These people can't magic up jobs and,"

    I'm on the WP. It's a load of shite. Earlier I wrote a longer and more detailed comment, but it vanished when I tried posting.

    Will try again later.

  4. It's the unemployment gravy train; an industry out to make profit for its shareholders. That's their purpose. In the process unemployment figures are massaged and it's win-win, just not for people like us.

  5. Amen Brother.. it is always YOUR fault you havent got a job, Its your fault you can't get there. Its your cv thats wrong, its your letter that are wrong. But they never say how can they make it "right". Its as if they think bullying you is going to motivate you into working. I am being forced because of the 29 jobs i applied for in 21 days to volunteer if i dont sanction time.

  6. Bullying is really what it comes down to. They call that help.

  7. next they will be using cattle prods and water boarding.. and call it positive reinforcement.. (i only wish i thought i was joking)


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