Thousands of school leavers up and down the UK are looking for their next step in life, and for many, this may be entering the world of work. Some may be considering apprenticeships and training while others may simply be looking for a steady job. School leavers are a fantastic addition to any business and bring a wide range of benefits which may not be as easily found in other employees.
If your business is looking to target school leavers, this is a great start. Young workers bring a range of unique skills and capabilities as well as offering other benefits too, including:
Flexible and Adaptable
Coming straight out of the education means school leavers have a learner’s mindset. They’re conditioned to pick up new skills, knowledge and learn as they go. Taking on staff with proven credentials and experience can come with issues such as set ways of working and habits which can be hard to break.
Fresh and New Perspectives
School leavers represent a new generation of workers and new generations come with new skills, perspectives and outlooks. Employing school leavers will bring a freshness to your business and you may find you learn a thing or two from them, as well as the other way round. Raw and passionate young people are eager to learn but will also have experiences you don’t have. The main example of this usually used is in the technology sphere, as school leavers today have been tech-literate almost from birth, a skill which cannot be underestimated.
While there are many benefits to hiring a highly experienced employee, they often come at a premium. School leavers are an affordable option which allows you to enjoy their bright prospects and maybe have a star employee within a very short time. Lower upfront costs often lead to much bigger rewards.
A Loyal Employee
Someone who starts with your company at 16 or 17 will be an advocate for your brand in a much stronger way than an older employee doing the rounds of different companies. If you retain school leaver employees in the long-term then they can become real champions of your company and great examples of the company culture.
Hiring School Leavers
Companies who want to hire school leavers may wish to adapt their recruitment process and even change the language used in job descriptions. Make changes such as:
- Keep adverts short, sweet and to the point: language in the job description should be jargon-free and easy to understand
- Consider alternative applications: young people may want to show off their creativity so consider different forms of application. This could be recording a video application or carrying out a piece of project work or presentation.
- Keep realistic: while you may require some academic qualifications, make sure you don’t alienate potential employees. Only include essential candidate requirements as anything you list as “preferable” or “beneficial” may put off a nervous young applicant if they don’t have this particular qualification or skill.
Similarly, when it comes to recruiting and employing school leavers you can adapt the way you bring them on board and help to shape their development within the company. You can make small changes in everything from the interview process, minimising the stages as it’s a very daunting process for newcomers to the company to school leaver-specific onboarding programmes. If you are really committed to bringing younger employees into the company, a few subtle changes can really help!