There are a number of unfilled job vacancies across south east Wales according to the Jobcentre Plus.

Despite a national unemployment increase of 4.2 per cent between December and February, the Jobcentre Plus insists that vacancies, including 900,000 unfilled posts in the UK, remain above pre-pandemic levels.

Work coaches within the south east Wales region have been highlighted for their notable work, particularly amongst the 50 Plus age group.

An average of 3 per cent of older claimants have reportedly found work.

Through resources such as DWP’s 50+ Choices, older claimants in Jobcentres can utilise job clubs, Mid Life MOTs, and wellbeing sessions to clear barriers to work.

Part of these efforts includes a six-week digital skills course offered by Bargoed Jobcentre, through partnership with SERCO, aimed at acquainting participants with computer basics for contemporary job searching.

Lynda Ormerod, senior employer and partnership manager in South East Wales, said: "Jobcentre work coaches play an increasingly important role by supporting businesses fill their vacancies, while helping more people get ready to enter the jobs market.

"Providing every jobseeker with the support that suits their individual needs within the Jobcentre and linking in with support partners, such as Career Wales and with each of our local authority into work teams, is key to this."

Ms Ormerod also pointed to upcoming job fairs as a part of efforts to support people back into work.

Caldicot Job fair takes place today, April 18, in partnership with Monmouthshire County Council.

On May 15, a pan Civil Service recruitment event will take place at Newport's Pill Millennium Centre, seeking to identify future talent from diverse communities across South Wales.

Attention has also been drawn to the increasing support available for claimants with disabilities and long-term limiting conditions.

More employers in South East Wales are signing up to the Disability Confident Scheme, a program which recognises businesses that take extra steps to support disabled individuals.

Many of these employers offer work experience placements within their organisations.

Secretary of state for work and pensions, Mel Stride MP, commented on the shifting landscape since the onset of the pandemic, saying: "We've seen long term sickness related inactivity rise since the pandemic, that’s why we introduced our £2.5bn Back to Work Plan to transform lives and grow the economy.

"As millions are benefiting from this month’s huge boost to the National Minimum Wage, it is work, not welfare, that delivers the best financial security for British households."