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Atos are new preferred bidder for MWA in South East

DWP has updated its website to reveal that Atos is the new preferred bidder for the Mandatory Work Activity (MWA) programme in the South East of England. The provision was previously delivered by A4e, who had their contract terminated in May of this year after Employment Minister Chris Grayling claimed he had found “significant weaknesses” in their internal controls.

Mandatory Work Activity was launched by the Government in May 2010 and requires claimants to undertake a four-week placement to help get them into a working routine if they need an additional “push” to find a job.

Atos IT Services UK Ltd is one of the 15 preferred suppliers on DWP’s Employment Related Services Support Framework (ERSS) for the South East (Lot 1). The MWA contract was re-let in the South East through an accelerated tender process which took place in early June, and was only open to ERRS Lot 1 preferred suppliers, although it is not known if all 15 decided to progress a tender.

Atos has not previously acted as a prime contractor of DWP employability provision, such as the Work Programme or Work Choice. Atos Healthcare has however undertaken independent assessments in relation to health-related benefits on behalf of DWP since 1998. Atos Origin qualified on all 5 Lots for DWP’s Health and Disability Assessment Services Framework announced in April of this year, through which DWP are in the process of commissioning assessment services for the new Personal Independence Payment (PIP).

DWP’s updated list of MWA preferred bidders can be found at this link: