“It’s the first time an employer has given me the chance to prove myself!”
Those are the words of 27-year-old Jane Martin who for had been applying for jobs but without success.
Jane, who has cerebral palsy, sought the assistance of her local Jobcentre Plus in Stockton-on-Tees, who immediately referred her to Remploy. Following detailed discussions with a Remploy employment advisor, she decided a career in retail would be just the job for her. Remploy trained her in the key skills she would need to work in a busy retail environment, and set about building her self-confidence and self-esteem, which Jane acknowledged were the biggest obstacles she faced.
Remploy then helped Jane with her job searching, and she discovered that Marks & Spencer was looking for customer assistants to cover the busy Christmas period. She applied online and was immediately offered an interview; it was clear to M&S that Jane had the qualities it sought in new employees. Jane participated in role-play to ensure she could deal confidently with customer enquiries, and she passed with flying colours.
“Jane was appointed on merit,” said M&S commercial manager Ruth Woodhouse. “Our policy is to find candidates that are fit for the job, regardless of any disabilities they may have. It was clear Jane had all the right attributes and would be good with customers – and she’s quickly shown that this is one of her strengths.”
Jane’s just heard that her job is now permanent – and that’s the best start to the New Year she could have wished for. “I knew I could be as good as anyone else, but it took a long time to convince employers. Thanks to Remploy and Marks & Spencer, I feel I am doing this, and I now have a reason to get up in the morning.”