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supporting welfare to work providers

Adviser / Trainer skills and supporting tools

Skills and qualifications

The Guide for the Older Workforce assists information, advice and guidance (IAG) advisers in understanding the needs of this client group.

Career Development Institute aims to enhance the principles of professionalism in the careers sectior..

The Institute for Learning is the professional body for teachers and trainers in FE and skills.

Assessment tools

Some of these resources are free but most are charged. All are from reputable sources but providers will need to evaluate each for suitability and cost effectiveness, where appropriate – for their clients.

There is a wide range of assessment tools available covering different relevant areas, including employability (transferable) skills assessment, recognition of informal and/or non-formal learning, career interest and personality assessment. They include:

Job Readiness Toolkit

Employability skills / skills for life

The Skills Health Check is an online tool offered by the National Careers Service website.

Move On offers a direct approach to promotion, engagement and delivery of life skills including numeracy, literacy and money management. It describes the benefits that learning and qualifications can bring, and encourages people to believe that they can progress. The site offers CPD for advisers and materials for use with learners including assessments of literacy and numeracy.

The Lottery funded Outcomes Star™ measures progress for service users receiving support in order to maximise independence or achieve other goals. There are different versions of the Star for different sectors (e.g. homelessness, substance misuse, and mental health). The pilot version for older people, The Older Person’s Star, was completed in April 2010 and the final version is expected to be available in the Autumn of 2010.

Adult Employability Tool (charged), is published by Tribal Education. This is a short questionnaire followed by discussion with an adviser to open up discussion of employability issues.

Career interest assessment

Adult Directions (charged) is a careers and skills matching tool designed to help adults with their career decisions. It is available online or as a CD ROM.

Personality assessment

There are some well-established tools such as the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) which is taken by two million people each year. The disadvantage is the time taken to train staff and then administer, score and discuss the results with individual customers. Other publishers, such as SHL, have personality tests available too. One way of introducing a discussion of personality types would be to encourage clients to take the BBC’s LabUK Big Personality Test and to use the results as a basis for discussion.

Labour market intelligence

Information about jobs in different sectors (skills and qualifications required, average salaries, career prospects)


Horsesmouth provides free online mentoring services.

The Three Types of Executive Mentor

Everyone Needs a Mentor

European Mentoring & Coaching Council (EMCC)

Motivational Business / executive mentoring

Building rapport

Mehrabian’s communications research

Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP)

Mental Wellbeing

Working for Wellbeing in Employment  This DWP toolkit for emplopyment advisers was put together by an expert group of representatives from each Work Programme provider, specialist employment providers and mental health services to help more people with mental health problems back to sustained work and through work, to achieve better well-being. The aim of the toolkit is to help employment advisers spot when mental-wellbeing support can help a jobseeker achieve their employment goal.

Managing challenging behaviour

The aim of this NIACE guide  Managing Challenging Behaviour within Skills Provision for Unemployed Adults is to help providers support unemployed learners at risk of challenging behaviour to succeed in gaining skills and employment. The approaches described could be adopted by providers of any classroom-based learning for unemployed adults such as that within the Work Programme and ESF-funded programmes.

This site is for help and information only. It is not meant as an authoritative guide. It is not meant as an authoritative statement of the law, and future changes in the law and other programmes and initiatives could make it less accurate at times. TAEN, the Department for Work and Pensions and the European Social Fund take no responsibility for your use of the information. You should always take professional advice on any specific legal or financial matter.