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Forced to use Universal Jobmatch

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Hi,

Was told by JC adviser that the JC is no longer giving the books out. So have to use Universal Jobmatch to apply for jobs and record all job search activities. Also have to tick the box to give them permission for access.

 

To be honest, only applied for some jobs in the very first few weeks there and then kinda abandoned it since then.

Found it very difficult to use, and sometimes there was no apply button on the website for you to apply for jobs. Also sometimes cannot even login to the website like today where errors appeared when trying to login to the account. The jobs there mostly come from a third party websites like cv library, monster where already have an account. In general just go on to these job hunting websites straight away as they are already signed in on the computer and the mobile phone.

 

First, just would like to know if it is alright to use the website to record job search activities only, or have to use the website everyday to actually apply for jobs. Second, it is alright to just enter all job search activities on the day prior the signing on day? Sometimes have two interviews on the same day and only applying for jobs on the phone, after finishing those interviews and got home just want to have some good sleep. Third, will the information stores on the website like your CVs, personal information etc be there forever? Thanks.

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Thanks for your prompt response. I asked two JC advisers there on that day and both of them saying that the JC is no longer giving out any jobsearch booklets to the claimants. I asked some of the claimants too and they said the same thing.

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CV Library and other job search facilities like Monster are much better than JOBSearch which is so bad I don't think you will actually find a worthwhile job there. There would be too many people applying anyway.

 

You Advisor (the "expert") will be able to tell you how most jobs are obtained. Worth of mouth, speculative applications, all get jobs.

 

The usual method I have used is what I call the trawl, which means applying for so many jobs one might come up. It did and I did not like it but stayed there for nearly five years before bullying (just the one person) finally drove me out.

 

The other method is being more selective and angling for a job using research. Selecting the job you would like and then going about getting it. This method is better because you are more likely to find a job that you like. However, this has come a cropper for lots of reasons as well. Mostly, if you come from a low income bracket or wrong social strata and you you do not fit in.

 

Lower middle class were very disadvantaged in the past (and may still be) because they had higher aspirations than their resources could afford. And maybe they failed their XI+. Then you become Factory Fodder. And then they closed all the factories!

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Found it very difficult to use, and sometimes there was no apply button on the website for you to apply for jobs. Also sometimes cannot even login to the website like today where errors appeared when trying to login to the account.

 

First, just would like to know if it is alright to use the website to record job search activities only, or have to use the website everyday to actually apply for jobs. Second, it is alright to just enter all job search activities on the day prior the signing on day? Sometimes have two interviews on the same day and only applying for jobs on the phone, after finishing those interviews and got home just want to have some good sleep. Third, will the information stores on the website like your CVs, personal information etc be there forever?

 

Take screenshots of offending "job adverts", print them out. When UJ has "technical difficulties", again, do a screenshot and print it out.

 

 

  1. Get yourself an A4 pad and record your job search activities on a day by day basis. Record everything, even if it is just clicking on a "work for us" link on a web site (record it as "contacted xxx for suitable vacancies"). When UJ throws an error, staple the screenshot to that days activity. You can not (currently) be mandated to record your activity via UJ or grant permission for DWP to access your account.
  2. Record things on a daily basis or as soon as you can after the event. Don't try to rely on memory. The Job Centre may also try to sanction you if they spot several days worth of entries looking the same - Handwriting varies from day to day depending on mood, level of alertness, and what pen is to hand.
  3. One would hope that the data is stored for no longer than is necessary, or failing that, no more than seven years. However, as the servers are located in the USA and are beyond your control, your guess is as good as mine as to how long the data is stored.


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Job Search entries expire after a certain amount of time. Then they are deleted.

 

Entries cannot be manually deleted on JobSearch.

 

If you have engaged in a confidential job application, I recommend using abbreviations (in your entry) as you are obliged to keep it confidential as it is a two way negotiation and third party intervention is not desirable (for lots of reasons).

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Thank you so much!!! I will try to do it on Excel by creating my own job diary table or just on a piece of paper, and hope that they will accept it (finger crossed). Just few more question, if the JC adviser is not going to take my diary as evidence of actively looking for jobs, what I can do then?

The second question is that I was told by one of the adviser once that if we did not do what the Jc advisers requested us to do, we might be asked to print out all emails we received from the job hunting websites or companies that we applied to with both our email and the company email addresses shown. I really do not wish that to happen because I have another email address for job hunting and it is different from the one I used to register with UJ and given to the JC....

It is no compulsory (currently) to give the JC permission to access to the UJ account, but without giving the claimants the job diary and failing to inform the claimants that they actually have some alternatives, it left many people with no choices but to allow JC advisers to access their accounts.

I do not want to record my job search activities every single day is because I do not want the JC advisers to accuse me in the future for not continually doing it. Just like what I said above, someday I might have interviews and cannot be bother to open my computer when I got home, or I might just have some applications with very tight deadlines and cannot be bother with the UJ thing. I have emails with date that showed all the jobs I applied for and thus it is not a problem for me to write everything down all in one day.

"Entries cannot be manually deleted on JobSearch." @Perseus

I notice this too. I uploaded my CVs many times there as I applied for different positions and although I already chose to delete my previous CVs, you can still see them and download them from the website I think. And that is, very scary! We do not have the right to delete information we no longer wish to be seen by other!

And just like what Mr.P said above, "as the servers are located in the USA and are beyond your control, your guess is as good as mine as to how long the data is stored."

Another thing which I really dislike about UJ is that I think you can only create one job alert? Or probably I just do not know how to set up a second one.

Edited by Abbtt

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Report immediately any advisors who told you that you can't use paper-based job evidence, and that you have to give access to UJ. As long as your jobsearch evidence is sufficiently detailed, you could write it on a roll of toilet paper and present it - the guidance quite clearly states that the DWP cannot specify how a claimant provides their evidence.

 

Funnily enough, my advisor - and a few others - prefer to see paper-based evidence as they have little faith in UJ either. I suspect it's also easier for them to glance at a sheet of paper for 3 seconds rather than have to use their computer to look at stuff. Suits me just fine; evidence on the computer is just pixels and I much prefer a hard copy.

 

They're also only supposed to hold your old jobsearch sheets for no more than 4 weeks too, unless there's a labour market doubt on your claim in which case they can hold them longer.

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I find I forget to put things on my Job Log (JobSearch). It does not have to clearly written. It is designed primarily for your own use when applying for jobs. I use to note reference numbers and all sort of odd things.

 

Reference numbers are useful or else you will end up applying for the same job through different agencies.

 

I also put illnesses on the log. It turned out one of the Job Centre staff also had Ulnar Nerve Syndrome which is only a minor ailment, but it is relevant because it means I cannot apply for jobs that requires heavy lifting and left hand co-ordination.

 

Just for the record. Expect them to ask questions about entries. If they are not satisfied, they can always ask you.

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I will try to do it on Excel by creating my own job diary table or just on a piece of paper, and hope that they will accept it (finger crossed). Just few more question, if the JC adviser is not going to take my diary as evidence of actively looking for jobs, what I can do then?

 

The second question is that I was told by one of the adviser once that if we did not do what the Jc advisers requested us to do, we might be asked to print out all emails we received from the job hunting websites or companies that we applied to with both our email and the company email addresses shown. I really do not wish that to happen because I have another email address for job hunting and it is different from the one I used to register with UJ and given to the JC....

 

How you record your job search activity is entirely up to you - With a spreadsheet, you can insert screenshots of UJ defects/questionable jobs. Paper based, you'd want to retain printouts. Which ever method you use, be consistent and list everything. Should anyone demand to look at your records, you can drown them in nauseating detail :yuck:

 

I once had an adviser telling me that if she demanded it, I would have to provide hard copies of emails - I asked her how this demand could be reconciled with data protection and privacy laws and heard nothing more of it. If push came to shove, to/from headers would have been redacted along with any sensitive information. A marker pen is a very useful tool in these situations.


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I have said this a couple of times and I will state it again, Universal Jobmatch is not mandatory, I repeat not mandatory.

 

You do not have to give Jobcentre access to your account, if Jobcentre advisors stating it's mandatory then their are lying to you and if their keep forcing you then ask to speak to the manager or even better ask to see a mandatory letter regarding this.

 

I haven't give them access to my account as its not mandatory and not doing until it becomes mandatory. if you want to get a sanction on your JSA then go ahead and give them access but if you don't want the risk then don't tick them 2 boxes.

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I have said this a couple of times and I will state it again, Universal Jobmatch is not mandatory, I repeat not mandatory.

 

However, you can be mandated to create a UJ account. As part of your job seeker's agreement, you can also be required to search for X number of jobs per week on it. Failure to comply on both counts could result in a sanction.

 

Granting access and using UJ to record job search activity is not mandatory, so there is still scope to raise two fingers to the system.


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There was a job on the UJ website that I tried to apply for, but when I clicked on the link and completed the details, the web page said it didn't exist and reported it but never got a reply.

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There was a job on the UJ website that I tried to apply for, but when I clicked on the link and completed the details, the web page said it didn't exist and reported it but never got a reply.

 

This has always happened.

 

It is only sinister when a firm using the technique to get subsidised workers on 6 month trial contracts with no intention of taking them on permanently. Cheap labour.

 

Reputable charities may do this as well. Even criminal money launderers have been known to do this.

 

I did my public duty and reported the scams. Could not care less whether I got a reply or not. Not my job.

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However, you can be mandated to create a UJ account. As part of your job seeker's agreement, you can also be required to search for X number of jobs per week on it. Failure to comply on both counts could result in a sanction.

 

Granting access and using UJ to record job search activity is not mandatory, so there is still scope to raise two fingers to the system.

 

Yes that is true, but like I stated, its not mandatory to give Jobcentre advisors access to accounts however if their ask for proof of Job applications applied on Universal Jobmatch its best to print applications made on that site just in case.

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Yes that is true, but like I stated, its not mandatory to give Jobcentre advisors access to accounts however if their ask for proof of Job applications applied on Universal Jobmatch its best to print applications made on that site just in case.

 

This is not really best policy (arguable)?

 

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?408134-How-to-deal-with-the-Work-Programme

 

I resented the Work Programme asking me for proof of job applications. I surmised that this was the attitude of accusation by the WP Advisor that did not nothing to improve what was already a fractious relationship.

 

I did not have any trouble with showing b my Job Log to the Job Centre. I would not like them to pass it on to the Work Programme though as it contains confidential information I want to keep from them for the simple reason I don't like him.

 

If the Job Centre accused me I would clam up with them as well. I don't like being falsely accused or interrogated without a reason. I signed a contract to produce a Job Log and Job Search is the easiest way to do it. Recommended. Universal Job Match is cruddy for jobs though. Sign on to other agencies like CVLibrary.

 

I don't see why you have to print out anything (my printer does not work).

 

In the event I got a rejection reply by post that I could show them.

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Job Seekers Agreement: mine says I have to make five actions per week to look for jobs. Job applications are not specified. Also with in 60 minutes each to way travel distance.

 

I may actually a do more than this. There seems to be an unwritten rule that you have to contribute ** number of hours looking for work each week. I even note time taken on my job log if I remember.

 

Because I do voluntary work of 16 hours a week, I might be expected to search for 16 hours a week. This is an unwritten rule.

 

If you do not write in on your job log, they might not know and you will get grief.

 

It is the same thing at work. You have to be seen doing your work load. Not just the time spent there. Other workers will get resentful if you do not pull your weight.

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Sorry for my late reply.:oops: I just submitted a job application which took me hours to complete. Thank you for all your help!! I do not think I have ever agreed with the JC that I am going to actually use the UJ website for job hunting on my contract. It only demands 20 employers/ steps per week. (Although I will have a new contract on my next signing day..... Can I refuse to sign if the adviser put down something like use UJ xxx times every week on the new contract?? or Can they actually sanction me based on that?? ) I am now writing down all the jobs I applied for last week on a piece of A4 paper as my next signing day will be on Wednesday. I am sure the lady @ JC will definitely not be happy to see what I am gonna show her on Wed. And, I do expect a good hard “fight” with the adviser as my interview with her generally lasts a lot more than half an hour. :wink:

Overall, after reading all of your replies, I do find it quite disgxxting that the JC has gone so far to force the claimants to use UJ and then give them permission to access to the accounts (The decision of providing no more job diary to people was very likely coming from the management level @JC). It is not mandatory to use UJ as long as we have an account that is searchable by the JC, legally. I really do not understand why the JC is so keen on it, especially it does not seem to be a help at all in job hunting comparing to other job search websites that already existed, and with those long numerical username. Created a website just for the purpose of sanctioning people that might be genuinely, actively, doing their best to find A job sounds so sad. I got to go to bed now, been searching for jobs/ filling applications ever since 9 am. Thank you once again for the help!! Good night.

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Sorry for my late reply.:oops: I just submitted a job application which took me hours to complete. Thank you once again for the help!! Good night.

 

There ought to be a forum group "Tips for Getting Jobs".

 

I am used to office work but filling in application forms is a bit awkward.

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I will have a new contract on my next signing day..... Can I refuse to sign if the adviser put down something like use UJ xxx times every week on the new contract?? or Can they actually sanction me based on that??

 

To receive Job Seekers Allowance, you are required to have a valid Job Seeker's Agreement - Your current one satisfies this condition. The JSAg can be updated at any time, however, should it include conditions that you feel are inappropriate, you can ask for it to be referred to a Decision Maker (unless the rules have changed recently). With any luck, by the time it comes back from a DM, it will have been forgotten about.

 

Tip: If you get asked if you have broadband and about your daily computer usage, or which publications and frequency you read them, give non-committal answers. I once mentioned that I use the internet daily and read certain trade rags only to find it became a central part of my JSAg.


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No... you can't eat my brain just yet. I need it a little while longer.

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To receive Job Seekers Allowance, you are required to have a valid Job Seeker's Agreement - Your current one satisfies this condition. The JSAg can be updated at any time, however, should it include conditions that you feel are inappropriate, you can ask for it to be referred to a Decision Maker (unless the rules have changed recently). With any luck, by the time it comes back from a DM, it will have been forgotten about.

 

Tip: If you get asked if you have broadband and about your daily computer usage, or which publications and frequency you read them, give non-committal answers. I once mentioned that I use the internet daily and read certain trade rags only to find it became a central part of my JSAg.

 

I have never known them to change the JSAg first set up in the past. This would be a cause of a falling out. You cannot have a relationship (business contract) when one side keeps on changing the rules.

 

When job descriptions at work change, withdrawal of labour or other industrial action often occurs as a breach of trust has occurred. A compromise has to be painfully worked out.

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Job Seekers Agreement: mine says I have to make five actions per week to look for jobs. Job applications are not specified. Also with in 60 minutes each to way travel distance.

 

I may actually a do more than this.

 

Always best to add a little more than they're asking, so that there's never a doubt you're not doing enough. On the other hand, don't do too much extra as then they'll just make this your new target in your next review. Mr P's earlier comment on 'drowning them in detail' is a good one; it looks better and we all know the Jobcentre hasn't the time to read it fully anyway. They're more likely to check on an application if you haven't written much about it - but make sure that everything you put on your jobsearch sheet can be proven if necessary. We all 'pad out' the form sometimes and sod's law says they'll pick on the one vacancy you can't back up with hard evidence!

 

I apply for a lot of jobs but for the 5 'required' ones I always apply for vacancies which will send me an acknowledgement email as proof - Reed and CV-Library should be on everyone's list as these sites do it the second you hit 'apply'.

  • Confused 1

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Having never had to claim unemployment benefit in my working life of 49 years, and hearing a lot about this jobmatch system, I had a go on it last night out of interest.

I put in my postcode and a 30 mile radius. I gave no indication of what I am qualified for nor did I give it any indication of the type of job I was looking for.

 

Of the 5 pages of 'jobs' that it came up with, 60% were self employed 'delivering leaflets', with the rest made up of links to other websites, other agencies etc. There were probably no more than 7 'real' jobs, none of which I could do either because I am too weak to start labouring on a building site, don't have the qualifications or experience - HGV driver and food van deliveries etc.

 

Based on that sample I would not be able to apply for any job and would therefore be subject to a sanction for not trying hard enough!!

 

Oh I forgot to mention that I am a qualified chartered accountant (FCA) with specialist further qualifications in Tax Law (CTA)!

  • Confused 1

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