LATEST unemployment figures have shown West Fife is bucking the trend compared to national figures with a slight increase in those looking for jobs.

Across Scotland, 3.8 per cent less people claimed jobseekers' allowance or universal credits last month, however, West Fife experienced a one per cent rise in claimants compared to figures from August last year.

DWP customer service leader for Fife West, Clare Murray, put the change down to the opening of the Queensferry Crossing.

"Construction of that has just been completed and there will be an increase in claimants from that," she explained. "That is probably why Fife is bucking the trend.

"We are doing a lot of work to try and alleviate that. We work closely with Amazon and their recruitment agencies. They are planning on recruiting up to 3,000 people heading to Christmas. They have just started the recruitment drive and we are working with recruitment agencies to ensure these vacancies are available to the people of Fife."

Clare said they hoped factors such as the introduction of a subsidised bus service by the warehouse giants would encourage people to take up a position there.

She is also hopeful the fruits of a job fair at Dunfermline Job Centre last week will help improve future figures.

"This was attended by 300 people and a variety of companies and employers were there and so far, not even a week down the line, we have 22 people who have either started already, or are soon to start, work from that and at least another 40 people being interviewed."

The introduction of a digital product to give more information about jobs in different employment sectors is also helping job seekers find out more about employment opportunities.

She added: "We are doing innovative work in Cowdenbeath where we have been trialling group sessions looking at job searching on social media and we plan to roll this out across Fife.

"A lot of customers are getting jobs through Facebook and other social media sites and we are helping to create social media accounts and show people how to look for work.

"We are trying to encourage people to be digitally inclusive and become more social media-aware."