Universal Jobmatch

Key Facts for Benefit Claimants

You may be forced to sign up to Universal Jobmatch. Read here how to avoid it and protect your privacy.

What is Universal Jobmatch?

Universal Jobmatch is a new job search website launched in November 2012 by the Department of Work and Pensions. The government wants to force everyone claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance to sign up to the website. This indicates that the primary purpose of the site is not to enable claimants to find work, but to be able to monitor their job search activity - and to then to enforce punitive measures against those claimants who fail to meet the constantly changing criteria within the jobseeker’s agreement. In short, Universal Jobmatch is not about helping people find work: it is about forcing people off benefits.

What is the purpose of Universal Jobmatch?

The government says Universal Jobmatch will make it easier for people to look for work. People are not unemployed because they don’t look for work, but simply because there are no jobs. The real purpose of the website is to make it increasingly difficult to claim Jobseeker’s Allowance and other related benefits.

Universal Jobmatch allows Jobcentre staff to monitor your job applications, searches and other activity. It doesn’t matter if there are jobs on the website which are in your local area and relevant to your skills. It doesn’t matter if you are looking for work elsewhere. Not making enough applications on this website can, and eventually will, be used as an excuse to sanction you and remove your benefits. It is notable that the severity of the sanctions available for use against claimants were increased the month before Universal Jobmatch was launched.

What is wrong with Universal Jobmatch?

There are numerous reports of illegitimate jobs posted on website, for example for MI6 hired guns and mafia couriers. This is because there are no background checks when creating account as an employer and anyone can post jobs. Fraudulent postings are usually removed only after they are reported. In fact, Monster Worldwide, Inc., the company running the website on behalf of the government, openly admit it will not keep your data secure. The privacy policy of the website says that your CV may be accessed by people or organisations without permission. A Channel 4 investigation found that hackers can easily use the website to obtain personal information of benefit claimants inlcuding scanned copies of your passport and driving license.