Khalid unlocks his true potential with the Restart Scheme

6 Apr 2022
The last couple of years have been a miserable time for 40-year-old Khalid from Brent. First, he was made redundant from his customer service-focused job, then the pandemic hit. Khalid caught Covid-19 and was weakened by the virus. Just as things were getting back to normal, he received a sports injury that left him unfit to work. Now almost fully healed, Khalid is looking forward to happier times thanks to the Restart Scheme delivered by Ingeus.
Khalid was referred to the Restart Scheme by his work coach at Harlesden Jobcentre Plus. The programme, delivered by Ingeus in Brent, was set up by the Government to help people get back to work after the pandemic. Jobseekers receive advice and access to local jobs, while employers enjoy free recruitment services. Ingeus adviser Ishaque Choudhury was on hand to guide and support Khalid and listen to his story.
“It was a difficult two years, for me it was very hard physically and mentally,” says Khalid. “Because of the pandemic I was staying at home and gaining weight when previously I was very active. Then I caught Covid and it affected me badly, it made my muscles weak. Last year, after lockdown lifted, I was playing football but my body wasn’t the same and I ruptured my Achilles tendon, so I was out of action for months. I was in a cast and needed physiotherapy, which is still going on but I’m in the latter stages now.”
Khalid and Ishaque discussed what career path he would like to take and began to tailor his CV to specific roles, as it had not been updated for almost five years. They used the CV checker on Ingeus employability platform iWorks to improve the document. Khalid has a varied background, having worked in IT before studying for a sports science degree. He has also had previous jobs in security and was keen to work in a similar field.
Khalid spotted a vacancy for a sales consultant with a storage company – and told Ishaque he thought it would be a good career opportunity. The interview was a three-stage process, starting with a phone conversation, then a video call and finally a face-to-face interview. Khalid breezed through it and was thrilled to be offered the job. “I am really happy with the interview process. In fact, I told my interviewer, ‘I believe that fate has brought me to your company’,” says Khalid.
He adds: “Are my family proud of me? One hundred per cent. My mum was always so worried about me because living costs have gone up, but now I am so happy and really appreciate how the Restart Scheme helped me. I would advise anyone to go on the Restart Scheme, I would recommend it because they cater for each individual. Ishaque was very supportive and helpful, I’m grateful for his efforts.”
Commissioned by the Department for Work and Pensions, Ingeus is delivering the Restart Scheme in         Greater Manchester and Central and West London and is partner to Serco, which is delivering the scheme in the Central West Midlands.

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