Tag Archives: Universal Automation

Workers Of The World Relax, Universal Automation Hits Google Store

Universal-Automation1-appIain Duncan Smith’s plans to force claimants to spend 35 hours a week endlessly applying for unsuitable jobs via the DWP’s shoddy jobsearch website have suffered another humiliating blow.

Universal Automation, which was recently released as a trial version, has now been launched in google’s Chrome store and is free to download.  The app automatically applies for jobs on Universal Jobmatch, the Jobcentre website that claimants are often forced to use as a condition of claiming benefits*.

According to the developers the latest version has several new features:

  • You can now set all Universal Jobmatch search parameters in the extension options. We added distance, posting date and job type.
  • The extension will apply for jobs on all pages of search results, not just the first one. To control that, you can set the maximum number of jobs the extension will apply for in a single session.
  • When the extension finishes applying, you can see a report with all jobs that were applied for.
  • There is a new delay option. It can be used to slow down automated applications so that the extension behaves more like a human using Universal Jobmatch.

Universal Automation was recently featured on The Guardian website, where those behind the app explained that the project was about more than just making life easier for unemployed people and winding up Iain Duncan Smith, but also aimed to highlight the drudgery of much of the work we do:

“We need to look at structural issues, such as role of unemployment in capitalist economy in general and also the particular condition of British economy at the moment. Basically most of work we do is at best socially useless and at worst actively harmful. Constant banging on about strivers, hard-working families, the squeezed middle and so on is only meant to obscure that,”

Whilst the app has designed to appear as ‘human’ as possible, obviously claimants should us this at their own risk.  As ever @refuted has good advice on twitter: “Would suggest anyone mandated to use #Jobmatch should create alternative account for experimenting with”.

To report any bugs or suggest improvements Universal Automation can be contacted via their website or @UniversalAutoma.  You can download the app at the link below in the time it takes to put the kettle on.  As the collective behind the app say themselves ‘Workers of the world … relax’.

https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/universal-automation/apfiloagjkhkilmdhlhppcnfpldmceke

The collective are blogging on tumblr at: http://universalautomation.tumblr.com/

* Whilst registration on the Unversal Jobmatch website 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).  You should be under no obligation to use the website anywhere but Jobcentres and there is really no need to tell the DWP if you have a home computer.

Follow me on twitter @johnnyvoid

Universal Jobmatch Comes Unstuck As Automated Jobsearch Is Launched

Universal-AutomationIain 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).

Follow me on twitter @johnnyvoid