SUSE works to promote the quality of supported employment in Scotland.
Scott is aged 31 and has an Acquired Brain Injury (ABI) sustained in childhood. He also has epilepsy and dysphasia which affects his ability to communicate. He was referred to Intowork in November 2009 by the local volunteer centre. In the past Scott had been able to find employment on his own but he had not been able to sustain the jobs, losing them within a few days or weeks of starting work.
In September 2010 Scott took up a work placement as a room attendant in a local hotel. The work placement was set up to help Scott establish a working routine, boost his CV, obtain a reference for future jobs, particularly within NHS and to test his stamina and motivation levels. He was supported throughout the work placement by both Intowork and the hotel management. Scott worked hard throughout the work placement, he displayed good work ethics and was well motivated but he was not able to meet the required output standards.
Scott's work placement was due to end in September 2010 but was extended by 4 weeks to help bring him up to speed so he could be considered for a paid position. With support, Scott's speed improved but he was still below the expected daily output level. However, the local manager, with support from Intowork, made a request to HR for the work placement to be made a permanent paid position but with reasonable adjustments. This meant that Scott would not be expected to meet the daily output levels but he needed to continue to show improvement and expected to increase the speed at which he performed his work.
On 24th November Scott took up his paid position. He has continued to impress his employers by his motivation and positive work ethics and he is improving and now regularly meets the daily output standards. He is now often the only room attendant on duty. He is flexible, willing to work overtime when required and to alter his shifts to suit the business needs. Scott has a supportive employer, willing to take Scott's needs into account to arrange his shifts so he has a fixed day off to continue a volunteering commitment. In April 2011, Scott's job is to be outsourced to a local cleaning company. He will retain his role and the new management has met Intowork and shown willingness to work with Intowork and Scott to maintain the reasonable adjustments that were put in place in November 2010.
Activities to achieve and support outcome
Scott's employment worker has continued to support Scott and his employer at work and has helped him to successfully claim Disability Living Allowance and Working Tax Credits. She has also worked hard to try to resolve an income tax issue, liaising with Scott, his employer, the Inland Revenue and Department of Work & Pensions.
Intowork has helped Scott with a number of issues:
Impact/measurement of outcome
Scott's extremely proud of his achievements, he takes pride in his work, enjoys being paid and realises that money is important to him. To boost his confidence and independence, Scott is using some of his new income on driving lessons; he now feels fitter than before and feels his stamina has improved. Loneliness is still an issue and we hope a Befriender will help to open up new social activities and a fuller social life.
Intowork is planning to reduce the level of support Scott receives. We have discussed this with him and Scott is aware that soon his meetings will reduce to once a month or so and he feels confident he will be able to cope with work.
Scott's employer is also pleased that they took the risk and employed him. They feel his attitude to work has been a breath of fresh air to the company and are willing to accept that while Scott may complete less work than other employees this is compensated by commitment to work and strong work ethics.