Iain Duncan Smith’s plans to force claimants to spend hours a week endlessly searching for jobs on the Universal Jobmatch website* could become a laughing stock after the launch this week of an app which will carry out jobsearch automatically.
According to their website, Universal Automation is a “browser extension which will automatically search for jobs on Universal Jobmatch and apply for them. It is the robot that will perform useless job search activities instead of you at a click of a button.”
In a humiliating blow to the DWP’s plans to turn Universal Jobmatch into a virtual workhouse, it seems that technology could make these plans redundant. Whilst the app is in early stages of development this is exactly the kind of technological innovation that some analysts have claimed could replace up to half of jobs in the next couple of decades.
As apps like this become more sophisticated it is easy to imagine that all jobsearch could soon be fully automated. Employers are unlikely to mind, as methods of recruitment will no doubt follow a similar pattern. No matter how much Iain Duncan Smith stamps his foot – and expect a tantrum when he finds out about this – his digital by default welfare reforms look to have already been out-digitised and now seem to belong to the last century.
Universal Automation – which I have on good authority comes from a trusted source – can be downloaded from: http://automation.strikenow.org.uk/get-the-extension/
As mentioned this is at an early stage of development, so read all the guidance notes and use at your own risk – those behind Universal Automation have called for feedback and techies who are interested in helping to get in touch.
*Universal Jobmatch is the government run job seeking website built at huge expense by Monster Jobs and which is designed to snoop on claimant’s job-seeking activity. The project has been an utter shambles with thousands of fake or spam job vacancies listed along with vacancies for sex work – against current DWP policy – as well as spoof jobs and outright scams.
Despite this hundreds of thousands of unemployed claimants have been forced to register with the website under the threat of losing their benefits. Whilst registration can be compelled, there is currently no requirement to tick the box allowing the DWP to snoop on your jobsearch (you can also untick the box which asks if they can send you emails).
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