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Universal Credit and the Jobcentre

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
Okay, so I always heard that the jobcentre was a hellhole. Getting job seekers was a full time, difficult task that I was reluctant to take on, as I was told to get the money I needed I had to spend 35 hours a week looking for work.

Well, 2 weeks after I started claiming Universal Credit (that replaces jobseekers in some areas now) I got interviewed for a catering position at the local hospital.
For this job I needed the standard DBS check, which I sent off over a week ago. I was told by the recruitment company in the interview that they paid for this process to only take a week maximum. That was nearly 2 weeks ago.

Fast forward to a few days ago, I go for my weekly appointment at the jobcentre. There I was told, that even though I signed a contract, sent off my DBS and spent 7 hours going through numerous tests for this job, that because I haven't got a start date I still have to apply for more jobs.... Still do the 35 hours a week searching or they'll stop my payment.
While I get this - can't just get jobseekers without job seeking - what is the point in applying for more jobs if I basically have one?
If I apply for these jobs, I already know that if I get an interview I'll have to turn it down, because I have a job. Even if go to the interview, even if they offer me the job, I'll be declining it because the job I've basically got offers great pay and great hours.

This DBS check could possibly take a few months (I'm wondering if the fast track DBS thing was a lie now) I can't bare the thought of applying for jobs non stop for the next few months when it'll lead nowhere. I'm wondering if anyone has advice on how to ease the stress and workload?


  • AifeAife LondonPosts: 2,207 Moderator
    Hey Meg,

    I'm really sorry to hear about what the job centre people said to you. It sounds like they haven't been very understanding about the whole DBS process. Is there someone else at the job centre you could speak to and possibly get a second opinion on your situation?

    With DBS checks it can take anything from 1-6 weeks to arrive, but hopefully yours does arrive soon. There's an option for DBS applicants to track the status of their application if you have the reference number. Hopefully this will be helpful to do while you wait for it to come through. You can find out more about tracking DBS documents here.

    How did you find the job hunting before you got offered this job?

    All the best,


    Maybe somethings don't get better, but we do. We get stronger. We learn to live with our situations as messy and ugly as they are. We fix what we can and we adapt to what we can't. Maybe some of us will never fully be okay, but at least we're here. We're still trying. We're doing the best we can. That's worth celebrating too ❤
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru

    Fortunately, after emailing the company I'll be working for to ask if they'd heard anything back yet, they emailed and said they had and asked me to start tomorrow.
    Not sure if it came back clear today or they'd had it back for a while and just failed to contact me, but it looks like it's mostly sorted now. If only I had help off on posting for another hour, I wouldn't have gotten myself so stressed :p

    But thank you for the options!
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