Southampton (GB)

Examining best practices in inclusion

Service improvements - City Limits Employment


Service improvements - City Limits Employment

Background, context and reasons why the project is needed.

  • City Limits is a local government run employment service which specialises in finding work for people with learning disabilities.   The service has existed since 1990 – initially employing one person.  In 2009, it employs 30 people and works with many more groups.  Despite the organisation growing, the service has remained largely the same.  The service now needs redeveloping to ensure it continues to meet the needs of individuals accessing the service.
  • Originally providing a pathway to open paid employment for the more able; the potential to ‘work’ is now extended more widely.
  • Current economic climate makes it more difficult to place people in employment and open, paid employment is not relevant for all
  • Policy move to less day centre based provision: younger people coming out of education with more skills – need for more employment focused activities
  • In previous years the service has been measured quantitatively – justifying existence by numbers

What are the project’s objectives?

  • To provide a high quality, sustainable employment and skills related service which offers value for money
  • To measure peoples’ progression and match their abilities to realistic opportunities
  • To provide socially inclusive activities for harder to place individuals

How will it be approached?

  • Clarify the service’s philosophy and mission
  • Set realistic criteria for referrals  
  • New and relevant promotional materials
  • Set up a client focused user group
  • Set up opportunities which develop a person’s skills and measure them accordingly
  • Set up mechanisms to move people into appropriate services and provision – avoiding stagnation
  • Provide opportunities for those unsuited to open and paid employment which aren’t as resource intensive
  • Making and maintaining links with relevant employers and other organisations
  • Providing individually tailored support between and into services

What is the scope of the project? / What are its boundaries?


  • Redevelopment of skills and employment services related to people with disabilities
  • Providing individually tailored support to enable people to be independent in a work setting

What are the intended outcomes? 

How can these be measured?

What are the critical success factors?

  • Development of an Catering based training scheme
  • Development of services for people with higher support needs
  • Development of a client user group and publicity materials
  • A service mission statement
  • A new referall process 
  • New and relevant promotional materials
  • Development of a methodology(ies) to measure progression

Are there any constraints?

  • Staff resources
  • Time to implement first phase (Jan 09 – Oct 10)

Are you making any assumptions?

  • New service development is possible and sustainable