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NEA - New Enterprise Allowance(12 Posts)
I have recently had a terrible experience with the NEA process that really damaged my self esteem and put me right back on the dole even though I had a business ready to go.
Provider was Business Enterprise Support that covers the west midlands.
Has anyone else got any information/stories about this scheme?
My DP has just had his business plan accepted - it's all positive so far although his mentor specialises in marketing and he'd prefer some wider advice/support but other than that its been pretty good.
Oh. Well with mine it was all over the shop. Firstly I had a mentor from the local Chamber of commerce, then I was given another mentor. The dates when they considered I had started moved about, then I was told to have a plan in by the 9th November, then was told it was late because they thought the date was the 2nd November.
I had a mentor who was great, but it wasn't him who wrote the report, it was some utter B***ch who whatever I said, she said it wasn't going to work. She wrote a sarcastic report saying that she didn't know why I was working so long on my plan because 'it is SIMPLE' (yes she did put sarcastic capitals in her report).
The jobcentre read this report and understandably were angry with me, and signed me off the scheme, no matter what I said to explain that I did have a business plan, that it was very nearly ready and that I intended to start trading that week.
It was an awful experience and complaining has just led to lots of 'cover my arse' emails just explaining what they have done over and over again without looking at the actual problem.
I am wondering if I can small claim them for this, as I have lost out on about £1,500 worth of funding as a result.
Is your DPs in the West Midlands or is it a different provider?
Hello, just an update - spoken to JCP about NEA and there is NO right of appeal (according to JCP) that is shocking that public body has no way to appeal against unfair decisions!
That's so crap. Especially considering how much that could have saved them on the long run. Bank? Angel investment? Apply again?
I can't apply again, because my adviser put me on the work programme and being on the work programme means you can't apply for NEA. They are bastards
Is there an ombudsman? That sounds very dodgy to me, no right of appeal?
I forgot to say how sorry I am that you're having to go through this - you must be totally devastated/frustrated/upset. I can just imagine how I would feel
It does sound dodgy, in fact there are many things that are dodgy, BES has no right of appeal, DWP won't reveal the service contract/service level agreement between them and BES.
DWP has no right of appeal for decisions made about the NEA, and between them they both claim that the decision was made by the other party.
What I am now interested to know about is whether there is any link between Business Enterprise Support Ltd and SERCO as if there is, that would explain the incentive to 'fail' NEA candidates, as SERCO makes money for two years from candidates on the work programme, even if they start work a week later - its a total moneyspinner for them.
I do feel devastated, but less so now. For a few days I really felt low, with rushes of rage that I had trouble coping with. I expected to be in a new world of motivation, of learning how to operate my own small business and of doing my own invoices, money management and planning, but now I am just another miserable job seeker begging for work from increasingly cold employers who can always choose someone else.
Oh heroine, I can just imagine - how bloody horrible for you!
To be honest from what you've posted (and that really is the extent of my knowledge on it) it stinks to high heaven. I think if you can find the strength from somewhere you should challenge this as much as you possibly can.
Take it tot he press? even just local press - the practices you describe do sound distinctly dodgy, you might raise enough awareness to promote an inquiry regarding the SERCO issue? (I'm just assuming that NEA is a government run scheme?)
Its not really a government run scheme - its one of these schemes that is run privately on behalf of the government, hence the lack of control I guess, but the current government have been pushing this scheme, probably to get people off the dole figures for the announcements in October. Perhaps I am just a victim of a little figure fiddling exercise and am now a good 'we have put x amounts of doleys on an exhaustive work programme' (in fact all this is is a place where you go and look for work for an hour, but whose providers (SERCO-owned sub-contractors) get paid for two years EVEN IF YOU GET A JOB.
Its weird because the advisers at the job centre do the same job, and if you combine with Next Steps services, it is exactly the same service, its just that by doing it this way you can claim the public sector staffing bill has been reduced.. because the same job is being done by the private sector, even though the private sector is being paid public money to do it.
Its all such a racket!
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