ERSA and the National Housing Federation has today launched a best practice guide ‘Housing and employment services: Collaboration in a time of change’ at their joint conference in Birmingham.

The best practice guide, supported by recruitment consultancy, Spirit, aims to encourage and support the development of new models of collaborations between the two sectors by highlighting the diverse models already in place.

This partnership between ERSA, the trade body for the welfare to work industry, and the National Housing Federation, the representative body of affordable housing in the UK, follows a successful joint conference last year between these two sectors, which highlighted the appetite in both sectors to work collaboratively.

The guide includes case studies of those working on a range of employment programmes and with a range of employment services providers, from public sector to large private providers. It is hoped that the guide will be used as a starting point for people to develop their own ways of working together that utilises the strength of all the organisations involved.

Kirsty Mchugh, Chief Executive of the Employment Related Services Association, said:

“With a tough economic market and bold targets, it is essential for the housing sector and employment services sector to join together to support jobless residents to find employment. This guide shows that there is no particular ‘perfect model’ when it comes to collaboration between these sectors, instead providers should throw the rule book out the window and work together to develop a partnership that works for them.”

David Orr, Chief Executive of the National Housing Federation, said:

“The case for collaboration between social housing providers and the employment related services sector has never been greater. Social housing providers are scaling up support for residents facing financial pressures and working to mitigate the impact of welfare reforms on residents. This guide shows that good partnerships can succeed, getting results both for our residents and the communities in which we all serve.”

The Guide can be found here.