Department for Work and Pensions
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Work placements boosting prospects of young people

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Skills Funding Agency

Youth Offer figures show nearly 450,000 work experience and sector-based work academy pre-employment training placements started since 2012.

Every week young people have started an average of 2,000 work-related placements as part of a drive to tackle youth unemployment.

Youth Offer figures out yesterday show that nearly 450,000 work experience and sector-based work academy pre-employment training placements have been started since 2012 by people aged between 18 and 24.

Research published earlier this year revealed that each work experience placement saves the taxpayer around £150, and sector-based work academy, £100, with participants spending less time on benefits and more time in employment.

With youth unemployment running at a near-record low of 5.8% and the number of young people claiming unemployment benefits dipping to levels not seen since the 1970s, the news is being welcomed as a further sign that efforts to extend opportunities to all are having a positive effect.

Minister for Employment Damian Hinds said:

The Youth Offer benefits everybody, with businesses tapping in to fresh new talent, individuals reaping the reward of a regular wage, and concrete evidence for taxpayers that our plan to help young people into work is paying off.

We’re making Britain a country that works for everyone, not just the privileged few and that includes our young people. We’ve made good progress, with youth unemployment down by over 300,000 since 2010.

But there’s more to do, which is why we’re introducing the new Youth Obligation for 18 to 21-year-olds to help ensure that more young people are earning or learning and have the opportunity to progress in the labour market.

Specifically, the figures show that between April 2012 and May 2016 there were:

  • 325,840 starts to a work experience placement by young people across Great Britain
  • 121,040 starts to sector-based work academy training by young people in England and Scotland

These schemes will continue next year with more opportunities for placements for young people who are looking to launch their careers.

As part of our commitment to helping even more young people into work, the government has pledged to create 3 million apprenticeships by 2020 and recently launched the Get In Go Far campaign to help achieve this.

More information

Read the latest Youth Offer: work experience and sector-based work academy statistics.

The work experience scheme consists of a placement with a host employer lasting up to 8 weeks. It provides young people with work-related experience and skills, and can be an important route into a job or an apprenticeship.

Read the work experience research impact assessment.

Sector-based work academies offer pre-employment training relevant to the business, a work experience placement and a guaranteed job interview.

Read the sector-based work academy impact assessment.

The unemployment proportion for young people of 5.8% excludes full-time students.

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