In our conversations with businesses to date, they would often tell us ‘young people don’t want to work in our industry sector’.
Some have even said, ‘I fell into the industry’ and overlay their own opinion of their work and assume they know what young people want.
The truth is not what you might expect.
The truth is, “young people do not have preconceived perceptions of any industry sector” (Youth employment accessibility research report).
Through our workshops with young people, we found that young people just want an opportunity to get into work and progress.
Overall, young people do not know all the industry sectors available to them.
This offers businesses an opportunity to promote themselves by promoting their industry sector.
The Construction Industry Training Body (CITB) recognised this in their recent report on ‘Changing Perceptions’, stating that “negative perceptions continue and need to be challenged.”
If a business wants to become an employer of choice then they first must promote the opportunities that their industry sector has to offer.
How can a business promote its industry?
To promote your industry sector and your business then we would recommend that a business forms relationships with local schools, colleges and universities as well as youth initiatives.
There are many ways you can promote your industry to young people including mock interviews, taster or open days, work experience or getting involved in community/corporate social responsibility activities.
The latter will also help you meet one of the criterias young people apply when choosing an employer.
Remember, young people are making choices about their direction towards a career or job at an early age. So, consider how you might engage and support them.
If you believe there is a negative perception of your industry sector, which maybe a disadvantage, this can easily be outweighed by promoting the culture of your company, how you live by your values and what you do for the wider community.
Businesses should consider their online presence and how they can use their content to attract young people to their company.
For more information about how to become an employer of choice see our latest research report for details under employer branding or register for our next training workshop or contact us for more support.