Work placements boost skills and job readiness of UK’s unemployed youth

Work placements boost skills and job readiness of UK’s unemployed youth
ManpowerGroup UK has launched a new online platform to power the Movement to Work programme.

Movement to Work is a collaboration of leading UK employers who provide work experience placements and employability skills training to 16-24 year olds to help them enter the workforce. ManpowerGroup has been working in partnership with the programme since 2014.

Before the launch of the online platform, matching young people with suitable work placements through Movement to Work was both frustrating and time-consuming for employers and young people alike.

With no central place for employers to share work placements and no online presence, potential candidates couldn’t see the scope of what was available. This led to little control and choice for young people, who could only register their details and rely on somebody else to manually try to match them with placements in their locality. In 2016, this process led to 5,000 work placements going unfilled.

A more sophisticated technology solution was designed by ManpowerGroup’s digital marketing team to address this issue and create a simplified process for employers and young people.

Jonathan Taylor, Digital Marketing Manager at ManpowerGroup, said: “To create the new online platform, the team focused on the candidate journey with the intent of making the process easier, regardless of the platform or device young people may be using.

“We’ve used our expertise in the world of online recruitment to build a platform that is engaging and mobile-optimised. It allows young people to see what’s on offer, and then select specific work placements they’d like to be put forward for, as if it were a job board.

“Search functionality also means they can narrow results down based on specific locations and clients. In an effort to address concerns before youths apply for placements, we’ve also made this very transparent regarding relevant requirements, policies and pay.”

From an employer’s perspective, they no longer need to be directly involved, with ManpowerGroup taking the lead to manage and simplify the process.

A dedicated ManpowerGroup team communicates directly with each employer regarding all their work placements over the coming six months. The details are entered into the platform and made available to the wider community online. Twice weekly, employers are provided with the details of candidates who have applied. Response times for young people to hear back from employers are within 72 hours.

Tobias Mills, Operations Director at Manpower UK and sponsor of the Group’s engagement with Movement to Work, commented: “As part of ManpowerGroup’s commitment to helping young people learn skills to prepare them for employment, this has been a great opportunity to draw on our in-house digital capability and create a solution that better matches young people to work placements. Agility has been crucial and we’re particularly proud of the speed of turnaround. From concept to ‘go-live’, our digital team delivered the platform within three months.”

ManpowerGroup is one of six key employers to initially feature work placements on the site. These include: Accenture, British Aerospace (BAE), British Gas, BT and Unilever. There are currently a total of 10 employers involved, with plans to extend the programme to feature as many as 30 different employers on the site.

If your organisation is interested in becoming a member of Movement to Work, we invite you to visit:

This article first appeared in the seventh edition of The Human Age Newspaper.