§ Mrs. Peacock
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what performance targets will be set to ensure that the Employment Service achieves its aims and objectives in 1997–98. 
§ Mrs. Gillian Shephard
The Employment Service's aim is to promote a competitive, efficient and flexible labour market by helping unemployed people into work, while ensuring they understand and fulfil the conditions for receipt of jobseeker's allowance. This aim is supported by five objectives.
I have set the Employment Service targets for each of its objectives as follows:
- Objective A:
- To offer unemployed people, particularly the longer-term unemployed and others at a disadvantage in the labour market, help and advice in finding work or appropriate training; and to encourage employers to recruit them.
- 1. To place 1.75 million unemployed people into work, of whom 1,050,000 million are JSA claimants.
- 2. 47.5 per cent. of total JSA claimant placings to be long-term (six months plus) claimants.
- 3. To place into work 75,000 JSA claimants out of work for two years or more.
- 4. 43 per cent. positive outcomes for JSA claimants invited to a 12-month advisory interview.
- 5. 150,000 ES clients to start on training for work.
608 Objective B:
- To offer people with disabilities particular help and advice in finding and retaining work or appropriate training; and to help and encourage employers to make such opportunities available to them.
- 6. 4.8 per cent. of total unemployed placings achieved to be people with disabilities
- To advise jobseekers of the labour market conditions for receipt of jobseeker's allowance and to ensure that those receiving it are available for and actively seeking work, where appropriate by requiring specific activities of individual claimants.
- 7. 10 per cent. of initial claim enquiries not to be pursued as new claims.
- 8. 145,000 submissions to adjudication where there is an arguable case with supporting information to show that the claimant is not available for, actively seeking or willing to accept work.
- 9. 70 per cent. of adjudication decisions made within 14 days.
- 10. 97 per cent. of Training for Work allowance payments to be accurate.
- 11 To ensure 90 per cent. of claims to JSA are passed to the Benefits Agency within seven days from date of claim.
- 12. To ensure that the accuracy of ES activity on a JSA claim is 97 per cent.
Objective D: To provide services to all clients in accordance with published standards and expectations, developed in line with the citizens charter initiative.
- 13. To deliver the standards of service in the jobseeker's charter.
Objective E: To manage the delivery of programmes and services efficiently, effectively and economically, and within the resources available.
- 14. To achieve £40 million in efficiency savings.
In addition, the Employment Service will be measured against the following criteria, to ensure that it is satisfactorily operating the jobseeker's allowance: to achieve effective joint working between ES and BA; to improve the service to jobseekers; jobseekers should improve the effectiveness and intensity of their jobsearch; the intervention regime operates effectively, both qualitatively and quantitatively; and staff and clients understand the purpose of jobseeker's agreements and use them effectively.