22 March 2013
Back to Work and Jersey Business have launched a new guidance and training service for unemployed people who want to become self-employed and start up their own business.
The Start Up Business Programme will provide locally qualified, motivated jobseekers who have a viable business idea with the knowledge, skills and advice needed to develop and run their own business. The programme will be run by the Back to Work employment scheme Advance Plus in partnership with Jersey Business for jobseekers who have been unemployed for 13 weeks or more.
Candidates will fill out an expression of interest form prior to attending an information session held by Jersey Business and Advance Plus in mid-April. Following that session, people who think the programme could help them will submit an application which will be screened for selection.
Business plan development
Jersey Business Chief Executive Officer Andy Cook said it was important that people understood that self-employment was not an easy option. “This is a great opportunity for us to offer access to our services to unemployed Islanders who might not otherwise have had the support they need to set up in business.
Candidates who are successful on this scheme will need to have a clear and robust business idea, be extremely self-motivated with excellent organisational skills and a passion for the idea that they have brought forward. We are looking forward to meeting potential entrepreneurs and finding out about their business ideas.”
The programme will provide an initial four-week training period that includes the development of a draft business plan. Candidates will present their plan to a panel for assessment. If they can demonstrate a viable business proposition, they will receive a further four weeks of support while market testing and refining their business plan. At the end of this period the candidate will launch their new business and continue to receive an additional 13 weeks of in–business guidance and advice. As part of the programme Jersey Business will help candidates to find sources of funding if needed.
Expertise and business know-how
Social Security Minister Senator Francis Le Gresley said that the programme would provide the information and support which would make self-employment a realistic option for unemployed people who had the motivation and determination to set up their own business.
“This programme aims to support unemployed people who already have a business idea but need the boost of expertise and business know-how that Jersey Business will provide. This is the first time that a programme of this type has been offered through Social Security and we are grateful for the partnership with Jersey Business and the opportunity to open another potential avenue of employment for some of our jobseekers,” said Senator Le Gresley.
Anyone who is interested in finding out more about the scheme can find expression of interest form at the Jersey Business drop in desk at Social Security every Tuesday afternoon, from their contact at Social Security or from the Jersey Business or Advance Plus offices.