Ombudsman welcomes proposed overhaul of ‘jobactive’

Kate Carnell has welcomed Labor’s policy announcement to overhaul jobactive, which she says is letting small businesses down.

In a recent statement, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman was scathing about the employment services system.

“(It’s) not meeting the needs of small business operators in Australia,” she said. “Most small business owners don’t look to jobactive for their recruitment needs.

“The recent government review of employment services report, I Want to Work: Employment Services 2020, shows only four per cent of employers used the jobactive system in 2018.

“Even back in 2007, only 18 per cent of employers used it. This in itself is a very low takeup rate.”

‘Better matching’ needed

Ms Carnell says the feedback from users of jobactive hasn’t been encouraging.

“We hear the same stories from small business owners across the country on their efforts to employ through the current system,” she said. “They end up with applicants who are unskilled or unsuitable.

“There needs to be better matching of jobseeker skills and the needs of small businesses.

“Employers need the right person for the job, otherwise they are wasting time. And time is particularly precious for small business owners.

“We support the federal government’s review of its employment services and the I Want To Work report.

“The government will now consider this report and its findings. There will be further engagement with key stakeholders on the recommendations.”

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