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Results: How happy/unhappy & how useful/not useful was the course/group/workshop you attended?

1 - Very Unhappy/No use

55.81% • 48 votes

2

17.44% • 15 votes

3

10.47% • 9 votes

4

5.81% • 5 votes

5 - Very Happy/Extremely Useful

10.47% • 9 votes

You may not vote on this poll

86 votes in total.

  • FIRST POST
    hyperfunk_d
    Poll - JobCentre Plus 'Courses': Useful or Waste of Time?
    • #1
    • 7th Feb 11, 6:38 AM
    Poll - JobCentre Plus 'Courses': Useful or Waste of Time? 7th Feb 11 at 6:38 AM
    Hi everyone,

    I am sure discussions regarding these 'back to work' groups and courses, that any of us who have claimed/are claiming benefits are forced to go on, have been carried out here already, but I just wanted to see if I could gather some numbers on how you all feel about them...

    If you have been on one or more courses/workshops or any other enforced sessions outside of your normal signing-on/advisor interviews, either at at JobCentre or other establishment (or if you are scheduled to go on one), please choose one of the following to describe your views.

    Select a number from 1 - 5, where 1 indicates you were very unhappy or thought the course was of no use (or both), through to 5 which indicates you were very happy and thought the course was extremely useful (or both).

    Thanks for anyone who takes the time to answer!
    Last edited by hyperfunk_d; 07-02-2011 at 6:42 AM. Reason: Text change
Page 2
  • ohdamnit
    I take it you don't have a job?
    Originally posted by dmg24
    Yep troll, no I don't but I have only been out of work 2 months, in which period I have had initially little interest pre xmas, but post Xmas I have had 5 people a week minimum requesting to put my CV forward, and I have had 2 final interviews, and have another 2 this week ,plus four more firsts this week.

    what I don't need is someone telling me how to use word to "update my CV", or how to jobsite.co.uk to find jobs... maybe courses on answering competency based questions, or doing a good interview presentation, or role play approach would be useful.

    Yep its box ticking but pointless waste of resources paid to external companies.
    • saterkey
    • By saterkey 7th Feb 11, 7:01 PM
    • 280 Posts
    • 442 Thanks
    saterkey
    I suppose its like a job really, theres some things, training, staff dev, group things that you dont want to do but have to because its part of your job and your getting paid for it.

    Job Seekers Allowance is a payment, if you want it you have to follow the criteria set down. The courses get you out of the house, meeting and talking to people, access to facilities (for some who may have none), opportunities to go in a different direction perhaps, and maybe see that a life on benefits is not for you and makes you buckle down to finding a job more quickly.

    So although some courses may need tweaking for different people with different standards of education perhaps, on the whole I would consider them a good thing.
    • morganedge
    • By morganedge 8th Feb 11, 2:31 PM
    • 1,262 Posts
    • 1,319 Thanks
    morganedge
    instead of the pointless, overcrowded and very depressing courses, being treated like a 5 yr old asked where im going when all im doing is going to the toilet, why dont someone help me to learn to drive, the amount of jobs i have skipped for not having a driving licence is massive, more than 90% of my total interest in the job has died when i saw "must have driving licence" i could apply for at least 5 jobs a day if i had a driving licence, instead of searching and searching for a job that doesnt need a licence.
    Originally posted by Widelats
    As a non driver I couldn't agree more!!
    SO SO many jobs now ask that you drive, even if it is nothing to do with the job description whatsoever.

    I actually mentioned this to my adviser, and she said that they did used to help with learning to drive a few years ago?! (I didn't know this before she told me)
    However, obviously some people might need 20 or more tests and so it would be hard for the government to keep shelling out money I suppose, but yes, it would help tenfold more than these laughable 'courses' that they fund instead!
    • red devil
    • By red devil 8th Feb 11, 2:54 PM
    • 10,366 Posts
    • 7,711 Thanks
    red devil
    I hate the way people are all lumped together on the courses when they havent much in common and have different backgrounds, different social standing.

    I went on one course and there was a fella on there who was going down to the toilets and taking drugs or drink then returning to the room in a state. He was asked to leave the building and people watched him from the window staggering to the station. He shouldnt have been there he didnt need a job he needed some treatement why was he there? How unpleasant for women in the room who had to witness it and found it quite alarming.

    I actually complained about it but it got denied that it happened even though plenty of people saw it.
  • Thatchapdean
    I suppose its like a job really, theres some things, training, staff dev, group things that you dont want to do but have to because its part of your job and your getting paid for it.

    Job Seekers Allowance is a payment, if you want it you have to follow the criteria set down. The courses get you out of the house, meeting and talking to people, access to facilities (for some who may have none), opportunities to go in a different direction perhaps, and maybe see that a life on benefits is not for you and makes you buckle down to finding a job more quickly.

    So although some courses may need tweaking for different people with different standards of education perhaps, on the whole I would consider them a good thing.
    Originally posted by saterkey
    Exactly!

    It is so easy for people to say they are 'pointless' and a 'waste of time'.
    Some people are not fortunate enough to have access to the internet, PC or have been unemployed for so long that doing a CV and using job search sites is totally alien to them

    I had a successful job and believe I am pretty PC competent and intelligent enough. I have been to a few of the courses/sessions in the last few weeks and find them helpful. It makes you realise there are other people in a similar situation and also people who are less fortunate then yourself and need some guidance.

    It's the arrogance and patronising people who believe 'I shouldn't be here' or 'this is pointless' who will fall and are a less attractive as a future employee.

    If it was the case you didn't 'need to be there' then why are you?

    If it is all pointless then why haven't you found a job?

    Also people need to get off their high horse about 'I've paid my taxes for years and years for this rubbish'

    No, you paid your taxes towards health,education,welfare,security to help you and those less fortunate when it arises whether you agree with it or not.

    So easy to be judgemental and bitter but in the long run it doesn't get you anywhere.
    • imatt
    • By imatt 8th Feb 11, 4:45 PM
    • 298 Posts
    • 483 Thanks
    imatt
    Anyone who is misguided enough to think these "courses" are good value should take half an hour out of thier busy schedules and listen to this:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WVbq-d6MmMA&feature=feedu

    and

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CfMfwHssap0&feature=feedu

    and then they may learn something by visiting:

    http://watchinga4e.blogspot.com/
    • morganedge
    • By morganedge 8th Feb 11, 5:04 PM
    • 1,262 Posts
    • 1,319 Thanks
    morganedge
    It's just the word 'course' which makes me snigger in relation to the jobcentre.
    Maybe it was different in the older days, but my parents couldn't really believe it when I told them what courses i had been offered (CV writing, confidence building etc etc)
    I imagine that in my parents days, there were lots of REAL courses like skills/trades such as plastering etc that were offered.
    'On the flexible new deal' that lasts for a year, you will likely go on a 'CV course' every month or so, lol.
    ''not got a job yet? make an appointment to see Paul (for the 5th time) to see if he can help with your CV'' haha. It honestly makes me laugh.
  • Jowo
    I expect that some of the courses are pitched at a low level and are wholly inappropriate for some of the attendees, not least those with skills, qualifications and experience. My local job centre seems to recruit mainly cleaners, telesales and avon ladies and by the time a person weeds out the fake self-employment opportunities, non-jobs, relief and zero hours contracts and so on, there's not much left!

    However, I did watch some episodes of the Benefit Buster and Fairy Jobmother series and it's a real eye opener about how poor the standard and attitudes are for some of the job seekers who are virtually unemployable in their current state - scruffy, bitter, dozy, lazy. Some of the candidates are so out of touch with what employers are seeking and how little they can offer, it takes lots of time and effort to even bring them up to a standard whereby they can even do a bit of unpaid work experience in a simple role!

    I think there's only so much the state can do to get a person trained, qualified, experienced and skilled in some way to make them attractive to employers and very much more that a person can do if they set their mind to it, which they can do in their own time and at their own pace.
  • Thatchapdean
    It's just the word 'course' which makes me snigger in relation to the jobcentre.
    Maybe it was different in the older days, but my parents couldn't really believe it when I told them what courses i had been offered (CV writing, confidence building etc etc)
    I imagine that in my parents days, there were lots of REAL courses like skills/trades such as plastering etc that were offered.
    'On the flexible new deal' that lasts for a year, you will likely go on a 'CV course' every month or so, lol.
    ''not got a job yet? make an appointment to see Paul (for the 5th time) to see if he can help with your CV'' haha. It honestly makes me laugh.
    Originally posted by morganedge
    You may 'snigger' at CVs etc but have you and can you make one? Do you have any understanding what Employers look for in CVs and covering letters?

    Because they are not 'manual labour' based they are still real courses.

    Employers are in a position where they can be extremely picky about prospective employees so having a good CV and covering letter that stands out gives you the edge when it comes to getting an interview.

    If hypothetically you are 'seeing Paul for the 5th time' then there would be something clearly lacking in your applications and job search.

    There are tips and tricks which people can be given to help them improve their chances of even reaching an interview stage.

    I think it's the older generation who deem anything other then a trade as not 'real' work which is ridiculous.
    • dseventy
    • By dseventy 8th Feb 11, 6:42 PM
    • 1,169 Posts
    • 1,925 Thanks
    dseventy
    Is this just another "Oh no, I have to do something for my JSA?" thread? I refuse to read the thread until its confirmed.

    D70
    How about no longer being masochistic?
    How about remembering your divinity?
    How about unabashedly bawling your eyes out?
    How about not equating death with stopping?
  • Jowo
    Is this just another "Oh no, I have to do something for my JSA?" thread? I refuse to read the thread until its confirmed.

    D70
    Originally posted by dseventy
    It's a poll. At the moment around 78% of those polled have been unhappy with the back to work courses or not found them useful that they've been forced to go on while around 18% have positive responses to them.
  • ohdamnit
    Someone else who doesn't read the thread nor understands the point being made.

    Exactly!

    It is so easy for people to say they are 'pointless' and a 'waste of time'.
    Some people are not fortunate enough to have access to the internet, PC or have been unemployed for so long that doing a CV and using job search sites is totally alien to them

    I had a successful job and believe I am pretty PC competent and intelligent enough. I have been to a few of the courses/sessions in the last few weeks and find them helpful. It makes you realise there are other people in a similar situation and also people who are less fortunate then yourself and need some guidance.
    Originally posted by Thatchapdean
    Yep we agree some people dont have access or the skills to write their own CV. However lots of people do and don't need someone to advise them on how to change a font. Please don't tell me the jobcentre staff are better at writing professional CVs than recruitment agents and professional CV writers.

    Those people needing the help should get it, which funnily enough they can't because they send those not needing it on the course instead...

    It's the arrogance and patronising people who believe 'I shouldn't be here' or 'this is pointless' who will fall and are a less attractive as a future employee.
    No just I know I don't need advice on my CV, advice on how to use internet jobsites, and advice on how to make phone calls. There is plenty of advice I could do with but they cannot provide and get for myself thanks.

    If it was the case you didn't 'need to be there' then why are you?
    Because it's a box ticking exercise, you are sent on these courses fairly shortly after the JSAg. If I dont go I will get JSA stopped, but oddly enough I thought the idea was to help me get a job not punish me?

    If it is all pointless then why haven't you found a job?
    It is a tough economic environment, so getting a job is going to take longer, I think the current stats are saying 3 months for professionals (plus if you are from a professional background from CV submitting to final interviews can take 5-6 weeks as far as I can tell from my averages).

    Also people need to get off their high horse about 'I've paid my taxes for years and years for this rubbish'
    Erm no, the point we are making is that we have paid in our taxes, and we want some financial help during our bad times, also a bit of help on getting a job wouldnt go a miss..

    No, you paid your taxes towards health,education,welfare,security to help you and those less fortunate when it arises whether you agree with it or not.

    So easy to be judgemental and bitter but in the long run it doesn't get you anywhere.
    Really I didn't know that. We are not judgemental and bitter about the courses existing, but don't see the point in the government putting people on courses that have no benefit. If anything it wastes taxpayers money, to external companies.

    To be honest I have wondered about going self employed, and trying to get JC+ recommended teaching jobseekers skills such as Competency based questions, interviewing techniques, etc which would actually benefit people. As it is clearly a gap in the market.
    • red devil
    • By red devil 8th Feb 11, 11:25 PM
    • 10,366 Posts
    • 7,711 Thanks
    red devil
    Everyone says different things about CV's too. The more people you ask the more it becomes complicated.
  • funkycoldribena
    There really are some people on their high horses on here,very easy to spout when you've got a job isnt it?
    Wait until you've been subjected to this nonsense of "jobclub" before commenting, it really is a waste of tax payers money ironically that would be only of any use to the most useless of useless.
    Went shoplifting at the Disneystore today.

    Got a huge Buzz out of it.
  • dark lady
    Jowo i watched those programmes too and it was obvious to me that those particular unemployed people were handpicked for those programmes. I suspect Channel 4 knew they wouldnt get as many viewers watching these programmes if they were featuring unemployed middle class professionals so they just went with the usual stereotypes to fit the propaganda.
    • danothy
    • By danothy 9th Feb 11, 12:46 AM
    • 2,056 Posts
    • 2,690 Thanks
    danothy
    When I went on one of these courses (CV writing and job searching) it was fairly useless. I was told by a JCP worker that I should go because my CV was bad, although she couldn't specify in any way how it was bad other than "it's just wrong". It appeared she didn't even read it when she made this judgement.

    On the course the actual material advice given regarding my CV was minimal, boilerplate in nature and, in my opinion, wrong (even with an open mind). When I tried to engage in a discussion on the one single point raised about my CV I was fobbed off with "just do what you're comfortable with".

    The job search aspect was even more ropey. We were asked to come up with a list of words that described ourselves in a work context (skills, strengths etc.) and were then shown how this was not useful to use in a job search. Pointing out that if I'd been asked to come up with a list of words suitable for a job search rather than CV keywords I would have done so got me a sarcastic comment about me not running the course. Instead we were shown that googling our qualifications and desired job title would yield results (which it did somewhat) however the guy running the course couldn't seem to distinguish between google advert results and ordinary search results.

    The rest of the course was filled with a fairly haphazard mix of job application procedural information like taking the initiative, covering letters, follow up letters (although not their content, despite asking) and dressing smartly. Nothing ground breaking for me personally. No rehearsal interviews or indications of good questions to prepare answers for when approaching interviews, or advice on how to prepare answers in such a way as to not sound rehearsed.

    There was also the statement that the course had been set up because the guy running it had lost his job and saw the opportunity. I'd be fine with this if he could have provided something much more constructive than the lip service he paid to the undertaking, but it added insult to think that he was profiting from wasting my time.

    My vote therefore is that they are not useful. But I only have experience of one. I have seen plenty of complaints about them though, which leads me to believe I'm not alone in thinking this.
    Last edited by danothy; 09-02-2011 at 12:49 AM.
    If you think of it as 'us' verses 'them', then it's probably your side that are the villains.
  • Thatchapdean
    It's a poll. At the moment around 78% of those polled have been unhappy with the back to work courses or not found them useful that they've been forced to go on while around 18% have positive responses to them.
    Originally posted by Jowo
    No people haven't found a job because too many either set an unrealistic target/role or cannot be 'that' bothered to find work. If you really wanted a job then you would not be picky.
  • ohdamnit
    No people haven't found a job because too many either set an unrealistic target/role or cannot be 'that' bothered to find work. If you really wanted a job then you would not be picky.
    Originally posted by Thatchapdean
    Have you nothing better to do than troll?

    Or is it possible that you really are that uneducated on the subject?
    • imatt
    • By imatt 9th Feb 11, 9:09 AM
    • 298 Posts
    • 483 Thanks
    imatt
    "If it is all pointless then why haven't you found a job?"

    Sort of answered your own question. The number of people re-doing these courses several times is shocking! They are badly managed and poorly funded. Overcrowding is commonplace and the facilities poor. These "courses" are a blatent misuse of tax money. Some have been involved in fraud too:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2009/jun/28/fraud-inquiry-government-jobs-scheme

    As long as people remain ignorant and complient, these companies will go on as before using spin, jargon and downright lies to fool the public and "customers" attending thier "training schemes".
    • likelyfran
    • By likelyfran 9th Feb 11, 7:35 PM
    • 1,697 Posts
    • 1,441 Thanks
    likelyfran
    I didn't say it should - I was it was. It's a box ticking exercise at best.

    So people need to understand this, get over it, attend, make the right noises and move on.
    Originally posted by Sambucus Nigra
    In other words you mean that people should be sheep and dance pointless dances. Sensible!
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