What is Work Experience?
Work experience is any experience that a person gains while working in a specific field or occupation, but the expression is widely used to mean a type of volunteer work that is commonly intended for young people, often students through school, to get a feel for professional working environments. Many employers may be anxious when it comes to letting a student come into their office for a placement for numerous reasons, however, Business Beetle has compiled a list of advantages that can come with work experience placements.
Students Provide Fresh Perspectives and Skill
Diversity is a key aspect for successful companies. Student doing work experience provide the perspective and energy of a young person, introducing or contributing to the diversity within the company. They could help by making your company more appealing to the younger market.
Most people doing work experience have grown up with more advanced and modern technology, to most of the younger generation it is second nature. Employers/employees may be sent on courses to help with technology however young people are not likely to need this. For example; social media is a big market for advertisement, almost every student has a social media account, so they know how it works.
You could pick up some valuable tips to use it more effectively and tips on how to attract the younger audience as said before. It would benefit the company by offering different online research skill even more specialised IT skills that could transform the way a part of your company operates. Some secondary schools also have students take IT courses such as ECDL.
Influencing the Quality of Future Employees
Employers can help improve the quality and preparedness of young people coming into the labour market. By showing young people what the work place is like, you are preparing them for the future in the world of work. Once they have a taste for what future employment will possibly be like for them, they will know the do’s and don’ts of the workplace and what is expected of them. This leads to possible future employees having a better idea of the workplace, this leads on to the next point.
Being close with students helps employers understand the changing education system. It helps employers to improve their understanding of modern learning processes and current educational qualifications, like the new grading system of using numbers instead of letters.
Influencing Career Choices
Work experience placements are the ideal way of raising the profile of career opportunities within the company and could get rid of unwarranted stereotyped views. It is a great recruitment strategy, if you like the students work ethic and what they bring to the organisation why not offer them a permanent role such as an apprenticeship or future job. Work experience is a good way to hook this young talent and keep them in the industry.
If they choose your business, you then have and opportunity to shape them into the team you want, and you can see how well they work with the team. This could stop you from having to pay for an experienced skilled professional. This process littles the risk of taking on the wrong candidate and redoing the time consuming and expensive recruitment process again. Whilst qualifications such as GCSEs and A-levels are important so is the workers morale and how they perform.
Promotes the company
Students that enjoyed their work experienced are likely to recommend doing work experience with your company, which could also repeat when it comes to recruitment. People will recommend you as a good firm to work for. If you have many people doing work experience for you, the companies reputation for investing in young people will be high so there will be more people wanting to work for your company.
Offering work experience will promote not only your company but the whole industry. Many industries lack young workers as their image does not attract the younger audience. For example; working for the NHS in medicine is much easier to promote than chemical engineering. It gives students a ‘taster session’ of the industry, people like industries/companies that invest in young people growing customer base and tapping into young talent.
It also raises the community profile as many see this as important. Work experience provides a positive image within; employees, parents, students and teachers.
Increased Motivation of Employees
Companies that have participated in work experience have found this increased the motivation of employees. Giving employees a sense of responsibility over the person doing work experience is a great thing as it has a ripple effect in the future, they will feel more responsible and a greater sense of morale within their team as well as themselves.
It is a great way to keep the employees engaged as it challenges them. It helps them with their own supervisory skills as they mentor the work experience person helping them feel valued within the workplace. You are giving staff opportunities to show leadership and initiative. This would be a way of finding better use of the staff providing benefits for the company further down the line.
Why Students Should Have Access to Work Experience?
I am a student doing a week of work experience on social media marketing at drumBEAT Marketing UK t. I have thoroughly been enjoying my time here at drumBEAT, it has been a whole new experience. Prior to coming here, I had no idea what work experience would be like, never mind working.
I haven’t finished my work experience yet however I already have a better understanding of the world of work and what is expected of me. I was also uncertain as to what field I wanted to go into, but I chose to do my work experience here as it seemed very interesting and linked with many of my interests/what I believe I’m good at and enjoy. I was intrigued by the media aspect as I know a lot about social media and technology however I wanted to see what it was like from a business aspect. Design and creativity are also thing I am confident with and enjoy doing inside school as well as in my spare time.
I am leaving my work experience with better ideas on what I want to do in the future, I know I would like to stay on in this field and now I also have a better understanding of what qualifications I will need in the future. Not only have I enjoyed my time doing the tasks I have also enjoyed my time with the staff here, they are all really helpful and fun to be around. I believe it has also improved my talking skills as I came in quite shy and quite however they have all been so nice I feel like I’m part of the staff and t has made my time here so much more enjoyable.
Everyone should have access to a work experience placement. It shows requires skills for the work place and people should know what they enjoy as the will spend most of their life working. Young people are more likely to be successful in their job hunt if they have done some good work experience. The student can sample career options without committing to anything. It’s the best way to get a real sense of your chosen industry.
You can talk to employees and ask them questions you want to know. It shows passion and interest, it shows the employer motivation. It is a gentle introduction to the world of work. It gives you an idea of the skills needed to thrive in the workplace.