Liverpool leads the way in saying yes to Let’s Do Business

We kick-started the first of six national careers roadshows at Merseytravel in Liverpool on Thursday 15 January. More than 130 representatives of the schools and employers in the Liverpool City Region attended the Let’s Do Business breakfast event, run in partnership with National Careers Service.

The event was a chance to swap contacts and agree how to work together to better prepare young people for the jobs available in the city region. 

More than 50 local employers from the city’s key growth industries attended, including Stobart Group, Santander, Abbey Logistics, Siemens, AstraZeneca and Virgin Trains. 

Anne Spackman, Executive Director of Career Ready, speaking after the event said: “Today proved to be a great success as it provided a fantastic opportunity for Liverpool’s senior teachers and employers to discuss activities they can get started on together, straight away.

“The reason we chose Liverpool for the national launch is because the city has a clear job creation strategy and its business leaders are committed to engaging and preparing young people to join the workforce.”

Latest Government guidance highlights the need for schools and employers to forge stronger links to inspire students and provide them with real experience of the world of work. In addition, Ofsted now emphasises students’ destinations after school as a key measure of success, as well as exam results.

Ofsted’s Head of Careers, Karen Adriaanse, speaking at the Liverpool launch said:

"We simply cannot ignore the fact that so many 18-24 year olds are either unemployed or under employed and not reaching their potential. There are so many jobs that businesses know about that young people just aren’t aware of.

"Leaders and managers of schools and academies therefore need to ensure all students receive different types of inspiration and guidance so they can make informed choices about their future. Students’ destinations on leaving a school or college are as important as the qualifications they gain when they are there."

The Let’s Do Business roadshow featured students who have benefited from our programme of employer engagement. They also heard of the free help and materials available to all schools from the National Careers Service.

Caitlin Sillitoe, who completed the programme at Fazakerley High School in Liverpool, and is now studying to be a quantity surveyor with BAM construction, said:  

“When I first started 6th form I had very little idea of what I wanted to do. The programme not only gave me a wider understanding of the engineering industry, but completely changed my career path. During my internship I was the only girl on the construction site, screaming at the men to get their helmets on. I loved it.”

Cllr Nick Small, Cabinet member for Employment, Enterprise and Skills at Liverpool City Council, took part in a panel question and answer session. He said: “What a fantastic thing Career Ready are doing-making students ready to work in industries, to know the company and be ready to go into the company. The world of work is very different from the world of school and there are some fantastic businesses here. These businesses are confident to go out there and say yes we want to work with young people.

“We are very passionate about bringing opportunities to our young people. We have come a long way as a city.”

Having attended the breakfast event, employer Alex Baker, Virgin Trains said: "I didn't really know what to expect, this being my first event. it was really useful and well run. Please let me know of other events like this nationally so I can involve my colleagues."

You can see more of the day here.