Home » News » Two support schemes from the Dept of Social Protection available to Employers and potential Employees.

Two support schemes from the Dept of Social Protection available to Employers and potential Employees.

Published: 1st October 2021

The Work Placement Experience Programme (WPEP) - a 6-month, 30 hour per week voluntary work experience programme AND JobsPlus Scheme - an employer incentive which encourages and rewards employers who employ jobseekers on the Live Register.

The Work Placement Experience Programme (WPEP) is a 6-month, 30 hour per week voluntary work experience programme. The programme is for jobseekers that are currently getting a qualifying social welfare payment and who have been unemployed for six months (156 days) or more.

The weekly rate of payment is €306.

If you would like to re-train and gain experience in another type of employment, this programme can help you build new skills and gain work experience. You cannot take a placement where you already have built up experience in the role.

You can work part-time while you are on the programme, provided the part-time work does not impact your placement. The part-time work cannot be with the WPEP host.

If you are getting the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) and you would like training and work experience in a new work role, the WPEP may be an option for you.

Time spent on PUP may be counted as part of the 6 month (156 day) qualifying criteria for WPEP, but you must transfer to one of the qualifying payments before you can take up a WPEP placement.

To qualify for the Work Placement Experience Programme, you must be a jobseeker:

* aged between 18 and 65 years, and * on a qualifying scheme for at least 6 months (156 days), and  * currently getting certain social welfare payments

The qualifying payments are:
* Jobseeker's Allowance * Jobseeker's Benefit * Jobseeker's Transitional Payment * One-Parent Family Payment * Disability Allowance * Blind Pension * Farm Assist * Jobseeker's Benefit for the Self-Employed

Time spent on the schemes below may be counted as part of the 6 month (156 day) qualifying criteria. You must transfer to a Jobseekers' payment before you can take up the placement.

* COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment * Community Employment Programme * Back to Education Allowance * Youthreach * Springboard * Solas Training Programmes * TÚS - Community Work Placement Initiative * Rural Social Scheme

Jobseekers who are currently getting the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment must qualify and switch to a Jobseekers' payment before they start the programme.

You can apply for WPEP by registering on https://jobsireland.ie/

Once registered, you can apply for WPEP vacancies advertised on the platform.

For more information visit Gov.ie website: http://www.gov.ie/wpep/

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JobsPlus is an employer incentive which encourages and rewards employers who employ jobseekers on the Live Register. Employers are paid an incentive monthly in arrears over a 2-year period. It provides 2 levels of regular payments, €7,500 and €10,000 respectively.

Eligible employers who recruit full-time employees may apply for the incentive.

How to qualify - Employers:

If an employer decides to recruit an additional employee, they can complete the JobsPlus Online Application for Employers giving, for example, the name of company, size of workforce, bank details and economic sector of company. Once this is submitted an officer of the department will review and check the tax clearance certificate is in order and email the employer if it is approved.

Once eligibility is confirmed by the department, an employer may start to recruit, either by contacting their local Intreo Centre or Employment Services Office for details of suitably experienced and qualified candidates for their vacancy. They could also register the vacancy with Jobs Ireland.

Once preliminary interviews have been conducted and candidates have been shortlisted employers should then ask these candidates log on and complete Jobplus Online Application for Employees to check their eligibility for JobsPlus.

The department will process their request and if found eligible, will confirm the employee's eligibility and rate of payment for a prospective employer.

Employers should register online here. https://www.welfare.ie/en/Pages/secure/jobsplus-employer.aspx

Jobseekers should register online here. https://www.welfare.ie/en/Pages/secure/jobsplus-employee.aspx

Further information available here: https://www.gov.ie/en/service/eecbb7-jobsplus/

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5 min Video detailing the support from the Department available to Employers: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdWXwAjbF8E

Contact details of the 4 Employer Engagement Officers in the Midlands Division:

Laois: vivienne.graham@welfare.ie
Offaly: edel.fitzpatrick@welfare.ie
Longford/Athlone: ann.holt@welfare.ie
Mullingar: cathy.moran@welfare.ie
 

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