Unlocking potential: How job centers drive small business growth

Today is Small Business Saturday. A day to celebrate the thousands of businesses and entrepreneurs across the country who form the backbone of our economy.

We use small businesses all the time. Whether it is your local coffee shop, hairdresser or family bakery, they are the beating heart of our high streets and a large part of our economy. Nearly 10 million people in Britain work in companies with fewer than 50 employees. And behind these organizations is our network of more than 630 employment centers.

This week I visited Arapina Bakery, a small business in South London, which has directly benefited from the support our Jobcentres provide. Local employment advisor, Liam, told me about his work with bakery owner Michaela to identify their business needs and implement a bespoke business plan. Through this partnership, local Jobcentre helped Michaela recruit five new staff, helping the business grow. The baked goods were great and we talked about how Liam, without wasting much time in his daily duties, helped select, screen and recruit staff.

This is just one of the many ways local job centers can help small business owners. Employer Advisors work with local businesses to find job openings and promote those openings to job-ready job seekers.

Whether it’s creating vacancies, navigating the recruitment process, or tapping into the local labor market and upskilling job seekers, DWP Jobcentres are here to help you at every stage of the recruitment journey. Giving someone an opportunity can truly change a life and Jobcentres can work with you to grow your team.

This time of year, small businesses really shine. It’s so important that we support the businesses in our local communities who contribute so much to our vibrant, festive high streets and town centres.

I really appreciate the dedication, adaptability and tremendous resilience it takes to be successful in business. As the new Minister for Employment, I am pleased to be able to champion small businesses at the heart of government, highlighting their value and ensuring they get the support they need.

Collaboration between small businesses and local employment centers is a recipe for success. Small businesses gain access to a support network that understands their unique challenges, and to a pool of motivated, local job seekers. But this collaboration is about more than just filling vacancies; it’s a partnership that helps businesses and communities grow together.

This Small Business Saturday, I’m calling on entrepreneurs and small business owners to explore the range of DWP services on offer, tap into the expertise of employment advisors in Jobcentres and discover the wealth of opportunities that come with investing in local talent.

Member of Parliament Jo Churchill

Churchill MP, Minister for Employment and was appointed on 13 November 2023. She was previously Deputy Chamberlain of HM Household (Government Whip) between 7 September 2022 and 13 November 2023. She was Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs between September 17, 2021 and July 6, 2022. She was Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department of Health and Social Care from July 26, 2019 to September 16, 2021. Previously, she was Assistant Government Whip from January 9, 2018 to July 26, 2019.

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