This Guardian article about Flexible New Deal with an interview with the founder of the company with the large contracts raised some interesting points. It was good that she acknowledged that "the outgoing, one-size-fits-all, classroom-based formula central to earlier government New Deal employment programmes" didn't work and "If you are coming on FND, it means that other interventions in the past year have not worked. You will find there will be multiple issues. That person might come with a lot of aggression, or exceptionally low self-esteem and no confidence. Unless the adviser deals with that first, then pretty much everything else we do is wasted." The comments on the article aren't too optimistic though.
I'm not one of the "more difficult cases also needing drug addiction treatment or lack of basic skills", low self-esteem and confidence yes, that's part of the condition of Asperger, yet my overall capability of work is so clearly there, just for that one issue of employers' typical requirements for good communication skills in jobs I could otherwise do well, therefore despite what I can do well I'm still not their first choice of person, get rejected, and ever closer to the time I'll have to go on this programme. It needs the provider to actively sell me to the company, I'll be all for it if they can do just that.
I found the article as a result of following this blog, which had a link.