Youth unemployment has been a talked about problem for a long time and has has a profound impact on our economy. However, there are still many questions asked about youth unemployment.
Youth Employment UK was called upon to respond to the questions commonly asked in order to clarify some of our thoughts and worries surrounding how youth unemployment will effect the younger generation, now and in the future.
Laura Mistry, operations director at Youth Employment UK responded to a call for answers, in a FAQ layout below.
What is Youth Employment UK and what do you do?
We are the leading campaign and membership organisation dedicated to tackling youth unemployment in the UK. We work with all major stakeholders young people, employers, youth organisations, training & education providers. We place young people at the heart of what we do making sure their voices are heard.
What is causing youth unemployment?
There are many impacts and triggers that may affect employment nationally, regionally and locally but also very personal barriers young people might face in accessing employment. The causes of these can be varied and complex.
Young people consistently tell us three things:
- They aren’t able to access work experience
- They haven’t been prepared for the world of work, with employers saying they lack skills
- They do not understand the careers available to them
How will it affect me as an employee?
It is likely that you will at some stage find yourself not in employment, education or training. It might be after you have finished your studies whilst you are still working out your next steps. You need to understand who can go to for help and support that can be your teachers, parents or guardians, your local job centre or the National Careers Service.
Making the most of opportunities is important, talk to your teachers, careers advisers and peers whilst you are on your course, make sure you seek out employability training and make the most of networks and connections whilst you are still studying. It can become more of a challenge once you have finished.
How will it affect me as an employer?
Young people have a huge amount of skills, potential and value to add to an organisation. Finding better ways of engaging them in the workforce will increase productivity and improve the talent pipeline.
Most sectors are facing an ageing workforce population and have real concerns about how they will continue to bring talent in to their organisation.
Is youth unemployment continuing to grow as a problem?
Whilst it has reduced since 2012 unemployment for young people remains significantly higher than for any other age group. There are a number of changes to technical education, apprenticeships and the benefits system which we watch closely to monitor how this might be impacting youth unemployment.
What are the main strategies for tackling youth unemployment?
As an organisation we make sure we are listening to young people and ensuring their voices are heard and the support they need is understood. We provide free Young Professional Membership to 14 – 24 year olds, a programme which continuously develops their employability skills. We have created a careers hub to give impartial information to young people about all career route. We work with organisations to promote youth friendly practise and recognise this with the Talent Match Mark.
How can I increase my chances as a young person seeking employment?
- Start thinking about your employability skills and show how you are preparing yourself as a young professional
- Seek opportunities for work experience, think about volunteering and how this might help you
- Explore careers, the world of work is exciting and there are opportunities out there. The more you know about industries and employers the easier it will be to build your network.
What can I do to help?
Share your voice, sign up to Youth Employment UK as a youth ambassador and share your story and insight. Volunteer to go back into schools, colleges and universities and share your journey.
Can Youth Employment UK help me to get a part time job?
Youth Employment UK can ensure you are developing your employability skills to give you the best chances of being successful and it can connect you to Youth Friendly employers.
responses provided by Lauren Mistry, Operations Director at Youth Employment UK