Thursday, 10 May 2018

Ceisteanna (288)

John Brady

Ceist:

288. Deputy John Brady asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the number of persons that have been through the employability service since its introduction; the number that have successfully gained employment as a result of the programme; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [20678/18]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Employment)

The EmployAbility service is a nationwide service funded by the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection (DEASP). The service provides employment support for people with a health condition, injury, illness or disability and a recruitment advice service for the business community to support such jobseekers. The overall objective of the service is to increase the numbers of people with disabilities participating in employment in the open labour market by helping the client of the service obtain and maintain employment (by supporting them in the workplace for up to 18 months).

The service is delivered by 23 companies who currently employ circa 155 (full-time equivalent) staff, of whom some 112 are job coaches. The service has been designed to provide intensive support for clients over an engagement period of 18 months. To this end, the service seeks to maintain a caseload client to job coach ratio of 1:25 and the service has an active caseload nationally at any one time of about 3,000 clients (or an equivalent turnover of circa 2,000 clients per year).

Responsibility for the overall management of the service transferred to the Department in 2012. The statistics requested are only available to the Department from 2010 from a number of sources, including a review of the EmployAbility service commissioned by DEASP from Indecon Economic Consultants and published in August 2016. The report recommended improvements to data collection and has provided the basis of improved collection of data by the EmployAbility companies and the Department since that time.

Table 1 provides details of the number of clients on the caseload of the Employability companies at the end of each year from 2010 to 2017. Data for 2015 represents an estimate by the Department, based on data available at the time. Data since 2016 has been collated from data provided by EmployAbility companies.

Number of clients on the caseload of the Employability Service Providers.

(Figures relate to position as at end of December in each year)

Year

Total Active Clients

2010

2,704

2011

2,903

2012

2,762

2013

2,862

2014

2,936

2015

3,000

2016

3,095

2017

2,994

Notes: 2010 to 2014 data taken from Indecon review of the EmployAbility Service. The 2015 figure is a DEASP estimate. Information from 2016 onward collated by DEASP from data provided by EmployAbility companies .

Table 2 provides total number of exits from engagement with EmployAbility into employment using the Indecon report data from 2010 to 2014 and data for 2016 and 2017 collated by the Department provided by the EmployAbility companies. No estimate is available for 2015.

Number of exits into employment.

(Employment is defined as a minimum of eight {8} hours per week)

Year

Total placements in employment

2010

326

2011

379

2012

631

2013

686

2014

891

2015

N/A

2016

920

2017

1,027

Notes: 2010 to 2014 data taken from Indecon review of the EmployAbility Service. The 2015 figure is not available. Information from 2016 onward collated by DEASP from data provided by EmployAbility companies.

It is important to interpret these indicators taking account of all relevant factors. For instance, the Indecon review found that when allowance was made for clients who dropped out or did not otherwise complete the programme (due to factors including ill health), 46.9% of clients exited the programme while in employment and that 83.3% of total exits to employment were in employment 6 months after ending of support from service.

The data highlight the importance that good quality indicators and analysis can play in the overall management and development of the EmployAbility service. The Department is working with the service on an ongoing basis to improve the quality and usefulness of the data and indicators underlying the service and has introduced changes to the annual reporting of data in consultation with the service.

I trust that this clarifies the matter for the Deputy.