You recall that UJM seemed set to be consigned to the dustbin where it rightfully belongs, after all the publicity about the mess it has become. But no. Monster's website today carries a joint letter from the head of Jobcentre Plus, Neil Couling, and the boss of Monster, Sal Iannuzzi. It will bemuse those forced to use it.
For instance: "Some of the concerns recently raised regarding the legitimacy of jobs on Universal Jobmatch, and even the future of the site itself, are based on misrepresentations which attempt to undermine its true success as a secure, and effective recruitment website. With millions of active jobseekers over the last year, those best placed to judge the system, our users, tell us they like it and that it makes a real difference to how they look for work."
This is just dishonest denial of copious evidence, and it traduces those clients and journalists who have exposed the truth.
On rogue employers and bogus vacancies, it first says that it's nothing new, and then: "we are not complacent and we take all such incidents very seriously. In fact, the DWP and Monster have agreed upon new measures to remove questionable jobs to improve further the security of the service". These must be the safeguards which the company could have put in from the start but were told by "ministers" not to. So how much are we now having to pay Monster to do it?
Then it says that they are "managing" the issue of "duplicate or inappropriate" vacancies.
The final paragraphs are a kick in the teeth for the unfortunate client and taxpayer alike: "Finally, there has been inaccurate speculation about the relationship of the DWP and Monster. Universal Jobmatch was delivered on budget and on time and we are working closely together to ensure its continuing success. Technology changes at pace and we will continue to exploit the opportunities this offers to support jobseekers into work. The current contract between DWP and Monster runs until 2016, but the DWP - as with any large government procurement - will plan and consider all options for how it delivers the service in the future. But whatever that future is, Universal Jobmatch is here to stay, which will be of relief to the 500,000 employers and millions of people looking for a new job who rely on it every day."
Perhaps we should not have expected anything else from Iain Duncan Smith's DWP.