Employers must do more to boost young people’s skills

According to a new report from the CIPD, recruiting young people is just half of the equation and that once in work, more attention must be given to developing individuals and building the skills they need for future success.

The report, Developing the Next Generation, explores this issue through a series of case studies and considers how organisations can identify the most effective learning and development (L&D) programmes for young people and the importance of outlining a clear business case for investing in their development.

The research found that a key step, but recurring challenge for organisations trying to develop young people, is establishing a clear business case. The case study organisations discussed how their development programmes for young workers have impacted significantly on the wider business, helping to drive engagement, increase efficiency and foster greater productivity. Fujitsu said that focusing on developing young people has positively impacted the wider business, both culturally and at the bottom line. By attracting a diverse range of young talent, they are starting to alter the demographic of the organisation, and are seeing improved gender diversity. By going a step further and developing young workers, retention is higher, recruitment costs have gone down and they are successfully creating a pipeline of future leaders.

Nick White, Graduate Programme Manager at Fujitsu, comments: “We can see real value in the programmes and investing time, effort and money into making the programmes work. It’s about making sure we have future leaders, and that is actually happening. Thirty per cent of those on our Future Leaders Programme started as graduates in the organisation.”

Ruth Stuart, Research Adviser for L&D at the CIPD, says: “With over 300,000 young people entering the workforce every year, organisations need to establish effective development opportunities from the moment they’re employed, so they can retain them and build on the unique skills they bring.”