Case Studies

Unemployed helped back into work by community services provider using Self Awareness services

Abbey Access Centre
Lincoln, Lincolnshire

Abbey Access Centre is a community centre offering a range of vocational and educational services to support voluntary activity, training, education and community activities for employment support and community regeneration.

Services used

  • online Footprint® diagnostic
  • Candidate Feedback report


Abbey Access Centre, a subcontractor in the Workplaces programme, was looking to enhance and develop its provision of placement services, specifically, the development of a more in-depth approach to preparing clients for a return to employment.

The challenge

The centre supports both long term unemployed and recently redundant individuals in the Lincoln area. Whilst the team leaders and tutors are experienced in delivering courses and provision they required a tool to support the in-depth preparation of clients for interview and a return to employment.

The solution

Self Awareness developed an online facility to allow Abbey Access Centre to assess clients’ working styles and to provide tailored support and guidance.

Use of the diagnostic tool generated detailed Candidate Feedback reports for each of the clients and allowed the centre to provide focussed support based on the reports provided and to address a lack of self-confidence and self-knowledge which was found to be prevalent in clients that had been long term unemployed.

The client group and the tutors found the system to be incredibly accurate and proved to be invaluable in assessing and challenging existing behavioural constraints. This, in turn, impacted on the success rate of individuals at interview.

Gail Dunn, project manager at Abbey Access Centre said:

“It is common for the people we work with to be stuck with a set of personal descriptors, established in their past, which prevent them from identifying the true value of their skills, characteristics and attainments. The diagnostic tool has been useful in helping us overcome this barrier to personal development”

After the initial development of their use of the diagnostic tool and reports, Abbey Access Centre has continued to use them and integrated the model into the support process delivered to all clients.

The results

The programme has worked well for Abbey Access Centre and the diagnostic tool has been integrated into all service provision. To date over 335 individuals have been assessed and supported with results reflecting increased performance and awareness.

Feedback from Abbey’s clients and tutors has indicated that use of these Self Awareness services has provided a comprehensive understanding and positive reinforcement of their clients’ strengths and values, resulting in the reduction of apprehension and fear.

The ability of the diagnostic tool to draw out working styles, and in some cases to challenge existing perceptions, has proved fruitful and integral to improving performance of client groups at Abbey Access Centre.

The future

Continued use of the diagnostic and reports as an integral part of this programme at Abbey Access Centre.