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College launches a 'Fresh Start' for job applicants

Weston College has been inspired by their recent win of the prestigious Employer of the Year at the Lloyds National Business Awards. The College, which is the ninth largest Further and Higher Education College in the country, has decided to commemorate winning by launching a national ‘Fresh Start’ business awareness campaign to encourage a sea of change to kick-start ‘socially inclusive’ recruitment in the UK.

The idea is a simple one based around businesses pledging to be more open minded when considering CVs in order to discover untapped talent from wider disadvantaged groups in society – those who might be struggling to get a second chance at career employment.

Employers can sign up to the support the campaign using the following link: they will receive the ‘Proud to be a Fresh Start Employer’ logo which can be used to promote their support on their own website – thereby giving confidence to job applicants to know that their CV will be viewed with an open mind and looked at holistically.

The College’s Principal and Chief Executive Dr Paul Phillips CBE was inspired to create the campaign after winning such a prestigious award, he said: “We all know talented people who have struggled to return to employment after various life events whether this is someone who has been ill or cared for children or elderly relatives with a gap in their CV, or people who have recovered from episodes of mental ill health/addiction, or suffered stigma due to homelessness/existing prison, as well as disabled people or those struggling to transition from the armed services.

“If we can encourage more employers to display the ‘Proud to be a Fresh Start Employer’ logo, it will give hope and confidence to many job applicants out there, that there are a number of employers who have pledged to be that little bit more open minded when a CV arrives in their offices. In essence the ‘Fresh Start’ pledge and campaign is about opening doors and having honest conversations rather than closing opportunities and overlooking talent.”

Weston College is aiming to get 100 employers to sign the pledge by this time next year, as part of its wider strategy to increase social mobility, and to help businesses create inclusive and more diverse workplaces. All employers are encouraged to take the pledge and download and promote the logo, as a sign that they are a socially inclusive recruiter.

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