Nearly half of West Lothian job seekers found work in the past year

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The number of people seeking work in West Lothian has almost halved in the past year, as the job market picks up speed following the Covid pandemic and lockdowns.

The latest claimant count for West Lothian, for May 2022, shows there are 3,011 people seeking work in the county, down by 2,561 from last May, a drop of 46 per cent.

The number of local job seekers aged 18-24 has dropped even more over the same period, down by 57 per cent from 1,055 to 502.

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The new Alternative Claimant Count figures (those in the searching for work conditionality group) show that West Lothian is performing well against Scotland (down by 42 per cent) and the UK (down 37 per cent).

These latest figures come as the local Jobcentre Plus team continue to try to find work for local people.

Paula MacBrayne, employer and partnership manager for West Lothian said: “Although we’re in the middle of a hot summer, skilled job centre work coaches are working harder than ever to help employers fill record levels of vacancies. It remains our top priority to match the right job with the right person.

“Our West Lothian job centres have hosted employer interviews for 13 employers over the last week, resulting in 26 job offers being made to our customers.

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‘From job interviews in job centres, to Sector Based Work Academies for people considering a new career, there’s a huge amount of help available. Our work coaches are working tirelessly to get people of any age or career stage into rewarding and stable employment.”

Stock photo by Michael Gillen.Stock photo by Michael Gillen.
Stock photo by Michael Gillen.

The local job centre team also held an event on Monday to help people with disabilities get back into the workplace.

Paula added: “The Disability Confident Event we hosted at West Lothian College went well, Michelle Thomson (MSP for East Falkirk) stood in for Fiona Hyslop to deliver our keynote speech.

"Feedback received from attendees was very positive, and several employers agreed to sign up to the scheme on the day – this is great news for people with disabilities that want to find work.”

The local job centre in Bathgate regularly hosts employers looking for new staff, as well as recruitment events.