Quick Reference

Is a central feature of a growing number of welfare benefits in the UK. Continuing or full receipt of benefits is often conditional on the worker taking steps to raise their employability. The typical pattern is for benefit recipients to have to agree a ‘contract’ or ‘action plan’ with a government official, which details the steps they will take to raise their skills and capability for work and to find a job. As part of this arrangement, the benefit recipient will often receive advice, guidance, and training. The purpose of conditionality is to pressure those on benefits back into paid work out of a belief that employment is the best means to counter poverty and social exclusion. Conditionality is a feature of benefits for unemployed jobseekers but applies also to the disabled, long-term sick, older workers, and single parents. [See new deal and welfare-to-work.]

Subjects: Human Resource Management.

Reference entries