Work Experience or a Work Placement gives your young person a chance to gain an insight into the world of work
Undertaking a placement and gaining experience in a place of work helps young people to:
- Develop and use their ‘soft skills’ such as teamwork, good time management, self-awareness and confidence.
- Understand the links between school subjects and the work environment.
- Meet new people who could help them with their future plans.
- Gain a better understanding of what employment they would like or maybe a knowledge of what jobs they definitely would NOT like!
How Can You Help?
- Talk to your young person about the subjects they enjoy in school and the ones they enjoy less. Discuss with them why this is and make links between different subjects and types of employment.
- Encourage your young person to talk to their Careers Advisor or Teachers about what work experience options they would suggest exploring.
- Make connections with any friends or contacts who you think may be able to help your young person find work experience opportunities.
- Make sure your young person arranges their own Work Experience placement; this could be through writing a letter, making a phone call or visiting the workplace themselves. Support them along the way but it is important that they arrange the placement themselves so they can get the most out of the experience.
- Discuss what type of placement or work environment your young person would prefer. For example; Small or large organisation? Working inside or outside? Would they prefer to be active or sat at a desk? Is there a subject that your young person is really passionate about? All of these questions will encourage conversation and support your young person’s decision making when it comes to their work experience placement.
- Think about the bigger picture. Many organisations have a multitude of departments to enable their business to run, such as HR, Marketing, and Finance; these departments can often offer work experience even if the business isn’t in a sector that your young person is interested in, so there may be a role in that business that is of interest.
- Encourage and support your young person to continue with their work experience, even if they find they are not enjoying it. Completing the agreed timescale is evidence of their grit, determination and resilience and is experience they can add to their CV.