Recfest: Advice from our student panel
Not Going to Uni Group participated in the Rec Fest online festival. We completed both an employer and student panel with the aim of educating visitors on how COVID-19 has affected generation Z and the early careers space, plus how employers have worked to overcome challenges and offer candidates and new recruits a positive onboarding experience during the national lockdown.
Our student panel was made up of Alessandro, a current Year 13 student coming to the end of his A Level studies, Febe, who works on a luxury yacht in London and Jamie, who is a current degree apprentice studying civil engineering and environmental management.
Within this blog, we will take the key advice from our student panel to gain their thoughts on how employers can support young people into early careers opportunities. We asked our student panel, if they owned a business, what elements would they put in place to help young people coming into the business feel comfortable, particularly when applying for the job role.
When applying for job roles, our student panel felt that important things for an employer to consider are:
Not expecting young people to have lots of experience on their CV.
Don’t expect school leavers to know everything.
Reassure early careers applicants that there will be training in place, this should include basic interactions like sending professional emails, answering the phone and dealing with customer enquiries - things that more experienced people might see as simple skills are new to some young people.
Some young people are nervous after lockdown so be mindful of this.
Early careers candidates will be coming in at different levels of knowledge, so personalise training to their individual needs.
Be human! Young people won’t automatically feel comfortable speaking to senior level staff, as their most recent experience of seniority will have been in a teacher/student capacity. By being human, you show them that your senior staff are open and willing to talk/help them.