An innovative partnership between Ingeus and OCS, one of the world’s leading international facilities service providers, is changing the face of London’s courts, challenging stereotypes, and offering new careers to previously unemployed jobseekers.
In a collaboration which has already seen a number of people from under-represented groups employed as court security officers, the initiative is actively supporting the adage that workplace inclusion is not simply the right thing to do; it’s the smart thing to do.
OCS approached people-services provider Ingeus to support the recruitment of court and tribunal security officers (CTSOs) in the Capital.
Ingeus delivers the Restart Scheme in Central and West London, which gives jobseekers advice, employability support and access to local jobs. A large part of its work involves helping jobseekers harness their transferable skills, build confidence, and access roles they might never have previously considered – or have been considered for.
OCS worked in partnership with Ingeus to develop an inclusive recruitment pathway, opening up security opportunities specifically to those who had no previous knowledge of the sector. Ingeus created a three-day Routeway Course for jobseekers which included learning details of the role from existing OCS staff and a visit to a London court.
All successful candidates were offered an interview at the end of the course at Ingeus’s West Kensington branch. Three men and four women were offered jobs, in what it is hoped will become a model for filling further vacancies.
The newly employed security officers will be working in crown, magistrates’, and family courts, close to their homes in London.
Stephen Kerr, Senior Regional Manager, OCS, said the partnership had been instrumental in supporting the company’s drive to attract women and others currently under-represented in the security industry.
“Working with Ingeus on our social value recruitment process, we have been able to recruit talented people into our workforce who have unique experiences and abilities,” he said. “In our role at HM Courts and Tribunals Service, showing our customers genuine empathy in difficult circumstances is a key skill and our Ingeus recruits have that in abundance.”
Ann-Marie Conlon-Taylor, OCS Social Value Manager, HMCTS contract added: “Working with Ingeus helps us access people who have faced barriers to work, but who are being properly supported in a professional manner into employment. We were very impressed with the calibre of applicants put forward.”
Ingeus offers a fee-free, end-to-end recruitment service to employers. It also funded Security Industry Authority (SIA) licences for all the candidates; a requirement for anyone working in the private security industry.
Ingeus National Employer Account Manager Jenny La Rocque worked in collaboration with Tracy Hixson-Williams, Social Value Manager for the pioneering People Into Work Programme at OCS, and praised them for taking the time to invest in the development of the partnership and their willingness to support diverse participants.
She said: “OCS’s work ethic and values align with those of Ingeus. They want to support people who need a helping hand back into employment and make a social impact. Its People into Work programme specifically targets socially and economically disadvantaged people, helping them to gain and sustain good work.”