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Blog 12 January 2022

New Year’s Resolutions from our Employment Services Directorate

By Asi Panditharatna
Forward's Employment Service Director Asi Panditharatna looks at what we've achieved over the last year and goals for 2022.

Happy New Year to our commissioners, funders, partners, employers and the people we support.

In 2021 we had an amazing year providing more employability, vocational training, careers advice and enterprise support services to people across the country.

We started delivering new contracts including the Department for Work and Pensions Restart scheme in Thanet as well as the Kickstart programme for young people and an Adult Education Budget (AEB) programme in London and Kent. We are also proud to have launched new Information, Advice and Guidance services and expanded our enterprise and self-employment work.

We’ve extended our apprenticeships delivery through the provision of the Level 4 Employability Practitioner Standard and supporting more Employability Advisors to develop their practice by starting this apprenticeship. We have joined the Institute of Employability Practitioners and this affirms our commitment to supporting people to work, progress in and retain work.

A look back at the achievements of Forward’s Employment Services in 2021

In 2022, we look forward to further opportunities to expand our footprint and impact through the future commissioning of prison education and Information, Advice and Guidance services; probation education training and employment services; the new DWP Dynamic Purchasing System, more devolved AEB programmes and boot-camps through Combined Authorities, as well as growing our apprenticeships delivery.

Setting New Year’s Resolutions

Everyone should set goals at the start of the New Year. For 2022, we’re encouraging the people we work with and support to commit to the following behaviours that will help them achieve their goals:

  • Develop a strong sense of control over the parts of your lives or situations your can influence and spend your time and attention on these aspects. This also involves taking greater responsibility and discovering how to navigate a path to success. For example, this may mean attending networking sessions with our employer partners as part of our Restart or AEB programmes.
  • Become more motivated, work smarter and harder and take advantage of opportunities. For example in 2021 we offered work experience/taster opportunities with the Financial Times and Symphony to learn about the publishing and Fintech sectors.
  • React to your feelings of being overwhelmed and emotions with a clear head and put yourselves in control of the situation. For example if a job or interview feels overwhelming, ask your Forward Trust Employment Advisor to arrange some mock and practice interviews first.
  • Build and develop networks that will help you understand better an industry or sector, the career pathways and specific people who can help or advise you. Networks including those through LinkedIn or our exciting Forward Enterprise Club can also help you better understand how to behave and what to say in specific environments.
  • Ask for help when you need it. There is help out there and the Employment team at Forward are here to help.

Asi Panditharatna is the Executive Director of Employment Services at The Forward Trust delivering IAG, employability, vocational training, enterprise, apprenticeships and social enterprises services.

Find out more about our employment support.

In 2021 Asi was featured in FE week.