Working Chance, the UK’s only not-for-profit recruitment consultancy specialising in the support of women leaving the criminal justice and care systems, is rolling out its new digital mentoring programme Link&Chat to all of its candidates, following its successful pilot phase.
Working Chance supports women to find and sustain employment with real career prospects as it believes that employment not only gives dignity and purpose, but enables women to become financially independent and support their children. In addition to recruitment services, Working Chance has partnered with Rungway to develop a bespoke online mentoring programme called ‘Link&Chat’.
The programme is designed to match women who are looking for work or in work with corporate volunteers in a safe and supportive online community, providing the women with practical advice and guidance as well as industry insight. The benefits of the Rungway platform include anytime, anywhere support, access to multiple mentors and a way to address sensitive topics.
Lyn Warren, HR director at Carpet Right is among many corporate mentors who have joined the digital initiative, offering their expertise and experience to Working Chance’s community of women.
Warren commented on the new programme, “Working Chance is providing invaluable support to women seeking employment following difficult circumstances. This digital mentoring initiative is perfect for me, I can help wherever I am and whatever time of day. I have helped with a number of questions, including giving advice on preparing for presentations, what to do as a new starter with no induction and how to deal with rude colleagues. I also gain new perspectives and tend to learn a lot myself – you can never stop learning and developing yourself.”
Working Chance’s mentoring programme Link&Chat runs through Rungway, a technology platform which is changing the way people give and get help at work. Users of Rungway are using the platform to seek advice and share their experience on work and life challenges, providing career advice and helping build up confidence by feeling better informed.
A Working Chance candidate aged 21, who is a care leaver and ex-offender, said, “I like that I can just post a question and connect with mentors who have heaps of experience and really want to help me through my struggles at work. When I first used Rungway, I was nervous about how people might react to my questions, but I soon realised that everyone is on here to help. I have been helped in many ways; from asking about how can I prepare for a supervision and support meeting to how to de-stress after a busy day at work. Rungway is fun and friendly. It offers a real supportive online community where women can openly talk about work related issues, give and share advice. I’d definitely recommend it!”
Jocelyn Hillman OBE, founder and chief executive at Working Chance, added, “Working Chance generates social mobility by supporting marginalised women and their children to cross the social divide from lives of exclusion to lives of contribution through employment. One of the ways we achieve this is by finding new, creative and innovative ways to work, including partnering with organisations such as Rungway. Without technology like this, women with convictions who are looking for work would struggle to find the support they need to thrive in the workforce. The beauty of this platform is that it also provides our corporate partners with the opportunity to transform the lives of women and their children, invest in the community – as well as learn something new themselves.”
Julie Chakraverty, Rungway founder and chief executive, added “Rungway is proud to support Working Chance in their all-important mission and support these women back into the workplace, so that everyone can have an equal chance to fulfil their potential.”