Over 1 in 5 young people in the UK are not in education, employment or training. By 2022 this will result in nearly £28 billion in costs to the exchequer and lost output to the economy, on top of the human and social costs. Employers now need to step up and commit to helping young people get in and move up in the workplace. The UK Commission is committed to the outcome of more career opportunities for young people. Explore this page to find out more information on youth employment, discover the benefits of working with young people and see what support is available to help you recruit a young person.
In summer 2012 the UK Commission for Employment and Skills published The youth employment challenge. This set out the structural changes in the labour market that have made it increasingly difficult for young people to get into work and progress on a career path. It highlighted the importance of employer practice in tackling this challenge and called for UK employers to adopt a 'youth policy': to do something, no matter how small, to help young people get into work. This includes activities like opening up recruitment practices and offering work experience or apprenticeships.
In our latest report, Scaling the youth employment challenge, we examine the extent to which UK employers are engaging in these types of activities and some of the barriers to making them more widespread. There are many excellent examples, but there is scope to do much more. By taking some concerted steps towards greater and more ambitious employer ownership we could achieve a great deal. From the current baseline our aim should be to double the engagement of youth policy activity among UK employers, in particular with work experience and apprenticeships, where we have discovered untapped and future demand. If we can move the needle from one employer in four offering work experience to one in two, and boost apprenticeship participation from 15% of employers to 30% this would make a significant contribution to scaling the youth employment challenge.
In addition we also produced a short animation which focuses on the findings around youth employment and specifically relates to the 'Youth Employment Challenge' report published in summer 2012. This is the third in a series of webisode animations to highlight some of the key findings from the UK Commission's Employer Skills Survey 2011.
Watch these two videos around the challenges relating to youth employment
David Fairhurst - The death of the Saturday job and why work experience is vital!
David is the Chief People Officer at McDonald's Europe and has enjoyed a rich and varied career in Human Resources. In this short video David outlines why work experience is of huge importance to support young people into work. David outlines a "call to arms" for employers to step up and take responsibility.
Scott Fletcher - How work experience can help get young people into employment
Scott Fletcher from ANS Group discusses the vital role that work experience has in getting young people into employment. Scott tells the story of his journey from a Saturday job to starting his own technology business.