Case Studies

Mark

Mark has been on the SES (Specialist Employability Support) programme since the beginning of March 2016. His goal was to secure paid employment in either painting and decorating or as a drivers mate, he was however open to other ideas.

Mark is 31 years old and has been diagnosed with Psychosis which affects his concentration, memory and anxiety. Mark has a genuine gentle personality, incredibly friendly he thrives in an environment that offers an approachable hard working team. An avid Dartford Football club supporter, Mark lives at home with his Mum and Dad.

Given that Mark was open to ideas in terms of his job goal when a Marks and Spencer work experience opportunity become available at his local store in Dartford his advisor spoke to him about it. Mark was a little hesitant to go ahead but after some encouragement went forward. He met with the manager of the store where they agreed the days and hours he should work and then he started his four weeks work experience throughout July 2016. Following his successful accreditation at his Mark and Spencer work experience, Mark was ready for paid employment.

In August 2016 a Warehouse Operative role became available at another local store (Bluewater) and Mark applied. Much to his delight he was successful in securing the job. The work experience that he had completed in July really helped him gain the knowledge he needed to successfully secure this position. The employment contract offered was initially from August to October 2016; due to his outstanding performance however in October his contract was extended further into the New Year.

M&S Bluewater is the second biggest store in the UK, as a consequence Mark has learnt extensive merchandising and warehouse skills as well as working with a large diverse team which has increased his confidence significantly. Throughout his journey his advisor has been in touch with him regularly to provide support and offer assistance. His advisor has also met with his line manager who has been impressed with conduct at work, in his words ‘Mark is always punctual and well presented; the quality of his work is always exceptional’. His Mum is ‘over the moon’ too, as a family member she gets 20% discount from M&S products; the Vaughan family will be having a very Merry Christmas.

Marks line manager said

“Mark is always punctual and well presented; the quality of his work is always exceptional”.

Richard

Richard has been on the SES programme since the beginning of November 2015. His aspiration was simple – to get paid employment.

Richard is 29 years old and has been diagnosed with Dyspraxia, Autism and Asperger tendencies along with ADHD.

Persistent and determined are two words that describe Richard. He has had over 15 interviews with the NHS but has never been successful.

It was suggested to Richard that he could volunteer in order to get the required experience for a particular position but unfortunately there wasn’t a pathway for this at the time.

Richard’s Employment Advisor then spoke to Hampshire Hospital Foundation Trust about the Supported Employment Scheme that they had started. Mark Wilks the Supply Chain Manager, agreed to offer Richard a work placement. Richard will work two days a week, for 6 weeks gaining real work experience to enable him to find sustained employment in the future.

The Employment and Skills department at Enham Trust, one of the STEPs partnership organisations, are now working with the Supported Employment Co-ordinator at Hampshire Hospital Foundation Trust to open up more work placement opportunities for people across all Enham Trust programmes.

Richard has also been busy meeting with one of the HR managers at Hampshire Hospital Foundation Trust. They wanted to specifically understand the interview process from a candidate’s perspective who has a mental health condition. Richard shared his experience of being interviewed 15 times and very often not getting feedback, being asked questions he didn’t understand and how he felt some interviewers didn’t take him seriously.

The findings of these discussions are going to be incorporated into additional training plans for NHS managers which is very positive. She is also going to give Richard specific feedback on each of his interviews so that together his Employment Advisor and Richard can continue to strengthen his interview techniques.