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Business models and needs today are dramatically different to just a decade ago

Technology is radically changing the workplace. Many jobs today didn’t exist a decade ago. And that transformation will continue as companies operate and interact with customers in new ways.  Mobile-first websites, customer service chatbots and cloud-based systems based on big data analytics are the norms, not the exception of running a successful business today.

It means the skills modern businesses need are already significantly different to 2008, and that pace of change is speeding up.

Organisations have always relied on the skills of its people to succeed, but the changing workplace means that people with the right skills and experience are increasingly hard to find. This is holding back businesses and holding back our economy at a crucial time.

The vast majority (93%) of scale up businesses in the UK said they would be able to grow faster if they had access to talent with the right skills.

With Brexit likely to limit our access to talent from the EU, it’s never been more important to make sure young people in the UK are being prepared for this new world of work. But our approach to nurturing the next generation of skilled workers is broken.

Getting young people proper experience of work is the missing link. This experience is vital to making sure tomorrow’s workforce is passionate, engaged, and has the right skills to help our economy grow.

For too long, businesses have only offered work experience to connections of their family or friends, in a meaningless week-long period of making tea and photocopies.

Businesses are shooting themselves in the foot. They need a strong local talent pool, but work experience placements are not set-up to develop and hone young people’s skills.

Instead they see work experience placements as a resource drain, rather than an opportunity to develop meaningful work, bring in fresh perspectives, and grow the local talent pool.

Three key things need to change

We need to completely rethink the way businesses and the young interact as they enter the working world.

  1.   Work experience needs to be valuable to businesses, as well as to young people
  2.   We need to get better at connecting businesses with local young people who already have or are developing the skills they need
  3.   We need to make it easier for businesses to deliver quality work experience that will improve young people’s employability and add value to their business

We have a solution… Introducing Workfinder

We’ve created WorkFinder to easily connect business leaders to young local talent and help their businesses grow.

WorkFinder offers a variety of ways for business leaders to access local talent, whether through work placements, internships or workplace visits or presentations. Whatever size or sector, WorkFinder matches young people with local businesses, and in doing so gives back to the local community, in whatever way works best for their business.

Businesses sign-up online, and then young people can use our app to find the work experience opportunities that best suit their needs and skills.

What you can do now

Offering quality work experience isn’t a ‘nice-to-have’ for businesses, it’s fundamental to their success.  It supports the commercial imperative of growth by improving access to new ideas, skills and talent.

So let’s make it a priority: Sign up to WorkFinder today by clicking here. And then tell your friends and fellow businesses leaders to do exactly the same.