The administration of Jobcentre Plus is a matter for the chief executive of Jobcentre Plus, Darra Singh. I have asked him to provide the right hon. Member with the information requested.
Letter from Darra Singh:
The Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your question asking how many job point kiosks there are; how much her Department spent on job point kiosks since their introduction; what assessment she has made of the effectiveness of job point kiosks; and what plans she has for the future of such kiosks. This is something that falls within the responsibilities delegated to me as Chief Executive of Jobcentre Plus.
The number of job points currently being managed under the terms of a commercial agreement between Jobcentre Plus and its current IT provider, Hewlett Packard, is 7,283.
Running costs for the job points have amounted to £16.7 million since August 2007. Detailed costs prior to August 2007 are not available due to the way the Department was invoiced for services at that time.
Our job points continue to form a key part of the Jobcentre Plus self service strategy and have enabled its customers to conduct approximately 89.5 million job searches a year through this key channel. Later this year, Jobcentre Plus will start to replace 5,000 of its current job points with new kiosks. These are specifically designed to improve accessibility, reliability and cost effectiveness and give a much greater opportunity to exploit new technologies to enhance customer service.
Along with this replacement project, Jobcentre Plus is also installing an enhanced central kiosk management system that will provide much greater opportunity to monitor individual kiosk use and therefore continually assess effectiveness and future development.
I hope this information is helpful.