Role of third sector in employment services, j rees
Exploring the role of the third sector in commissioned employment services Knowledge to date and questions for research Funded by:Hosted by:
What are employment services? • CV writing, interview training, action plans etc • Emphasis is on interventions to move people into work as quickly as possible, rather than longer term training Basic model of employment services DWP Contract Payment Referral from Provider jobcentre ‘Job outcome’Unemployed Employment Services New job
Why an evidence review?• Provide an accessible introduction and a narrative of the policy developments over the last 15 years• Locate and evaluate the existing evidence• Outline of the main areas of controversy and gaps in our knowledge
Findings one: three waves of policy development in employment services• Wave one: – Pilots and trials of contracting services, flexibility for providers, some payment by results• Wave two: – Proliferation of contracted services, expansion to new customer groups, more payment by results• Wave three: – Commissioning and payment by results becomes the accepted model of delivery – 2008 Commissioning strategy commits DWP to contracting to a few ‘prime providers’ who are expected to subcontract
Major themes within the literature• A third sector ‘squeeze’• Potentially unfair relationships• The hardest to help customers
Gaps in our knowledge• Basic information about third sector provision• Independent research evidence showing what is distinctive about third sector delivery• The extent to which controversies are well founded, and the impact of attempted solutions
Work Programme revolutionary?• Continuity with contracted out approaches under New Labour: FND, Pathways, EZs• Prime model, conditionality, differential payments, DEL-AME switch were all emerging• Work Programme goes further: 1 Programme for all ‘customer groups’, national rollout• Primes bring supply chain management expertise and financial scale• Sub-contractors come from all sectors
18 Contract Package Areas covering UK, 40 contracts 18 Prime contractors (2 TSO, 1 Statutory) Prime Contractor Degree of referrals retained or passed to subs varies greatly Direct DeliveryReferralsfrom JC+ Estimated 19% delivered End to end by TSOs (vs 30% rhetoric) provider (tier 1) Partnership? Specialist provider (tier 2) Delivery / Job Outcomes
Issue raised within sector• Upheaval, complexity and uncertainty – Getting on Framework, intensive bidding requirements – Losing out in one CPA, moving to another• Squeezing out the third sector – Price discounting – Contracts/referrals not forthcoming … window dressing? – TUPE concerns• Payment by Results – Payment model too risky for TSOs (esp niche) – Creaming and Parking within customer groups• Merlin Standard
Researching the Work Programme• Inclusion/Social Market Foundation Forecasting/viability studies (ss 2011)• ACEVO – survey of third sector subcontractors (October 2011 )• NAO – Value for money (December 2011)• DWP evaluation – consortium led by IES (spring 2012)• TSRC - comparative and case study research (spring and summer 2012)
Our research questions1. What do third sector providers do and is it different to what other providers do?2. How have providers experienced the early delivery of the work programme?3. What are stakeholders’ views of the value and distinctiveness of third sector provision?
Proposed methodology• Focus on 2 CPAs selected to capture different supply chain models• Stakeholder interviews with sector and w2w infrastructure, Primes, DWP – Nov/Dec 2011• Subcontractor focus groups – providers from all sectors in a supply chain – Jan/Feb 2012• Subcontractors case studies – all sectors Feb/march 2012
Likely implications for policy• Are the complaints made by the sector valid?• Is the work programme functioning as intended? Does it need altering in order to succeed?• What if anything does the third sector contribute that is different to providers in other sectors?• Do we need to learn a lot more about experience of clients?