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Job Advertisements

Volume 410: debated on Friday 19 September 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what measures are taken by the Employment Service to ensure that those businesses advertising jobs through job centres are genuine. [129422]

The administration of Jobcentre Plus is a matter for the Chief Executive, David Anderson. I have asked him to reply to my hon. Friend.

Letter from David Anderson to Mrs. Janet Dean, dated 25 September 2003:

As Jobcentre Plus is an Executive Agency, the Secretary of State has asked me to reply direct to your question asking what measures are taken by Jobcentre Plus, as the public Employment Service, to ensure that businesses advertising vacancies with us are genuine. This is something that falls within the responsibilities delegated to me as Chief Executive of the Agency.
Our aim is to maintain a reasonable level of assurance about our vacancies without setting up a costly and cumbersome checking process that may deter genuine employers from giving us their vacancies. We have systems in place to establish the genuine nature of both the employers and their jobs. For example, the employer is required to provide us with a valid UK address, postcode and landline telephone number. If there is any cause for doubt a visit may be arranged to the employer by staff from the local Jobcentre Plus office.
We maintain regular contact with all employers using our services. If we believe that an employer has deliberately misled us and we are unable to obtain assurances to the contrary, the employer's vacancies are removed from display.
By and large these arrangements work well and we rarely receive complaints from customers as to the genuineness of employers. However, when we do receive such a complaint, we investigate the complaints thoroughly and promptly and, if appropriate, remove the company's vacancies from display. Should such an 'employer' attempt to advertise further vacancies, these are not advertised until the previous problems have been resolved satisfactorily.
I hope this is helpful.