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New care-er for Airdrie man Paul

Care visitA former retail worker from Airdrie has switched careers after two years struggling to find work.


Paul McGrady, 33, left his supermarket position in 2010 for family reasons and then when he tried to get back into work, the competitive labour market meant he couldn’t and has been on benefits since.

He said: “I’ve always been in work so I didn’t think I’d have any problems getting back into a job. I must have sent out hundreds of application forms but only received a handful of replies and no interviews. It’s very demoralising.”


But Paul’s luck changed when Jobcentre Plus referred him to Routes to Work (RTW), which delivers the Work Programme on behalf of prime provider Working Links.


With RTW’s specialist help, Paul picked up the skills and confidence needed to re-enter the workplace – and help support his wife and two children.


He added: “I’d always worked in retail and that’s all I knew but was really struggling to get back into those types of jobs. RTW helped me update my CV so it showcased my skills, boosted my confidence so I could see a future for myself and helped me with retraining.”


Paul then participated in a six-week care course to give him the skills needed to enter that sector – and within just a few weeks he’d landed a job as a care assistant in the town.


He concluded: “I’d never thought that I’d be a good fit for the care sector but after the course, I could see that I was. I am back working full-time and it’s great. I can’t believe I’d never considered this career path before – now I can’t see myself working in anything but the care sector.”

Sarah McCulley, key worker at RTW, said: “Paul engaged with the all the services we offered, participating in training, coaching and attended all sessions tailored to support him in securing employment.


“He tackled his anxieties around job interviews and selling his skills, and has made the most of our in work support services to make sure he sustains employment. Paul was a pleasure to work with, and we are confident he will succeed in his new career in the care industry.”


Employment Minister Mark Hoban said: “This shows how the Work Programme is helping to turn around lives and improve the job prospects of thousands of people across Scotland.


"Jobseekers are getting support which is tailored to their individual needs so they have the best chance of finding work, while businesses are benefiting from recruits with the right skills and motivation.


"But it's a winner for taxpayers as well, because unlike previous welfare to work schemes providers only get most of their money if they deliver results."