Thérèse Rein, Ingeus’ Managing Director, was the only representative from a private provider invited to speak on this theme at a major G20 conference hosted by the World Association of Public Employment (WAPES) and Pôle-Emploi, and held in Paris on 26-27 May.
Over four hundred delegates from fifty countries gathered to share their experiences of managing the crisis and to map out effective strategies for the future. With global unemployment still high and budgets shrinking many governments are struggling to balance the need to help those who have lost their jobs during the crisis with those who have continued to remain outside the labour market. At the heart of this debate is the challenge of how governments can do more for less.
Thérèse spoke about the growing trend of governments to contract out welfare-to-work services to private providers like Ingeus, both to increase the flexibility of their public employment services and to test out new ways to deliver help to those furthest from the labour market. She stressed the importance of ‘smart’ procurement to maximise effectiveness and achieve best value for money. A public-private partnership approach involving clear indicators, sound performance management and outcome based payments was increasingly becoming part of the delivery architecture in international labour markets.
Thérèse argued that even where governments were automating services to reduce costs, advisors needed to remain at the centre of the client journey. Drawing on her own life experiences she illustrated how effective case management could make all the difference to maximising opportunities and successfully guiding clients on the road back to meaningful work. She told delegates that the core adviser-led Ingeus model had clearly demonstrated its worth over Ingeus’ 21 year history and had adapted flexibly to different international labour markets and economic cycles. She relayed how at the heart of Ingeus’ service delivery was a focus on people: their strengths, their abilities, and the responsibilities of providers to believe in them and support them in their journey to independence.
The results of the conference will be discussed by G20 Employment Ministers in the autumn with a view to shaping future employment strategies. Ingeus was honoured to be invited to contribute to this process; a recognition of its role as a thought leader contributing to policy, innovation and best practice in welfare to work.
During the event, Thérèse Rein said, “Speaking here today at the G20 conference, has not only been a privilege but it has also clearly demonstrated that the public, private and third sectors are increasingly working in real partnerships and making a real difference to peoples’ lives”.