Following a report by the Sunday Business Post at the weekend that raised questions about the Department of Social Protection’s JobBridge scheme, Musgrave Group has defended its use of the internship service.
The paper reported that a a total of 161 positions at SuperValu outlets around the country have been filled with JobBridge interns since the scheme began five years ago. It also noted that there are calls for the Jobbridge scheme to be scrapped, with the Department reportedly readying to 'name and shame' companies that abuse the system.
A spokesperson for Musgrave told Checkout, "As individual SuperValu stores are independently owned and operated SMEs, we operate a unique retail model, as each store directly employs their own staff. SuperValu stores offer rewarding careers, employing a range of specialised staff such as butchers and bakers.
"Through the JobBridge programme, individual SuperValu retailers were able to give participants training and practical experience, ultimately creating full time positions for a number of colleagues. It is also important to note that the total number of JobBridge staff engaged by our SuperValu retail partners represents 0.01% of their overall employment numbers."
At head office level, Musgrave Retail Partners Ireland filled a total of 34 internship places through the Jobbridge scheme over a three year period.
The spokesperson added that these were nine month placements in a "newly created customer service trainer role. The placements included four weeks of formal classroom based management development training which covered areas such as ILM Certified Trainer Skills and ILM Certified Coaching Skills.
"Over 70% of the people part-taking in the Musgrave programme gained full time employment with our business in areas such as HR, trading and finance or with our retail partners as HR Managers."
According to a list of all organisations that have used the scheme, which was published by Sunday Business Post journalists Jack Horgan-Jones and Barry J Whyte, Tesco Ireland’s head office in Dun Laoghaire offered six JobBridge internship placements, while Aldi offered one.
BWG Foods offered eight JobBridge internships at its head office, while forecourt retailer Topaz offered a total of six internships.
The top advertised position on JobBridge, according to the Sunday Business Post’s research is that of Office Administrator (825 positions), followed by Accounts Assistant (476 positions) and Childcare Assistant (351 positions).
© 2016 - Checkout Magazine by Stephen Wynne-Jones