Less than a third of young people (28%) aged 16 to 21 aren’t confident about finding a job over the next few years according to a new report published by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) and EY Foundation – Age of Uncertainty: Young people’s views on the challenges of getting into work in 21st century Britain. The lack of information about local job opportunities was an issue for 35% of young people, with limited connections, a steady decline in school-secured work experience, low self-confidence and an apparent lack of visibility of local employers, all having the potential to impact on young people’s working prospects in the UK.
Young workers from lower socio economic groups are most likely to suffer from a lack of job prospects (33%), compared to 25% for youngers in higher social groups. The CMI research also found that 40% of 16-21-year olds aspire to become the boss of a company, 63% would like to lead a team, and 37% would like to start their own business. But the skills necessary for such a role are not currently being taught to help young people successfully make the transition from the classroom to the workplace.
Ann Francke, Chief Executive of CMI, comments: “Young people aspire to become leaders but it’s currently luck of the draw whether they get the necessary chances to learn how. We need employers and educators to help the next generations to develop practical skills and confidence from a younger age.
“If we are to succeed in creating regional powerhouses outside London then we must have home-grown leaders. Making management and leadership skills part of the school curriculum will help bridge the gap between employers and the next generation of workers.”
Maryanne Matthews, Chief Executive of EY Foundation, says: “What young people are saying loud and clear in this report is that there is a disconnect between having an experience(s) of work and the confidence to get a job, especially if they come from a low-income household.
“And while we are hearing that many employers, schools and colleges across the country are doing great things and offering inspiring experiences of work, there are still too many young people who are not getting this access – and they are calling for it! We want every young person, in every region across the UK to have the same systematic and high-quality experiences of work with local employers.
“Greater levels of collaboration are needed to fix this – and that’s what the recommendations in this report are all about.”
The report calls for employers to work with education on tackling the issue, as it’s not a lack of vision holding these young people back, it’s the knowledge of how to do it.