ANT Telecom’s Managing Director is encouraging students to be better prepared for the workplace.
It has been recognised that within the UK, many young people starting to look for employment can often find that they are not always equipped with the right (soft) skills to land their dream job. However, there is evidence from the Enterprise Adviser Network that suggests that a young person is 86% less likely to be unemployed if they have four or more interactions with employers during their school careers.
ANT Telecom believes that it is important for employers to liaise with schools on a regular basis, providing a key point of contact for business inspiration and opportunities for students to aspire to. However, at present only 40% of schools offer this type of encounter to young students. It seems the majority of schools still invest in a Careers Advisor for their students, which is a practice that hasn’t changed in over ten years and one that appears to not be an entirely effective method when it comes to fully providing students with the skills they really need when interviewing with potential employers and making the move into the workplace environment. Careers advice requires influence from a business perspective, which adds significant weight and credibility for young people to listen to and act upon.
The Enterprise Advisor Network is a Government initiative which encourages employers to liaise with schools and share knowledge and expertise about the professional working environment. Klaus Allion, Managing Director at ANT Telecom has been approached to become an Enterprise Advisor after voicing his own experiences of hiring young people, and feeling that a high percentage of applicants have not been ready for the real world. He has frequently come across CVs with multiple errors, candidates who are not presentable and many that have presented an unprofessional attitude.
Klaus believes that schools have a golden opportunity to motivate students and encourage their performance not only within their studies, but also outside of the school environment such as with extra-curricular activities, voluntary work, work placements and also ways of improving communications skills. It appears that school targets are only grade-related, not business related that consider the wider picture of how students will fair in the working world. Combining goals for academic study with life-skills will undoubtedly help students to focus on their future career goals and how not to be overwhelmed when their studies end and they are faced with searching for employment.
“I take great pleasure in motivating students to think beyond their school life and to start thinking and preparing for their future careers and honing their soft skills,” explains Klaus. “My role as an Enterprise Advisor is to help the students gain a well-rounded package of skills to arm them with for the future. This involves helping them to produce an informative CV and covering letter, how to excel at interview stage, perfect body language, overcoming nervousness at interview and how to answer any difficult questions they could come across.”
There are events that students can explore and take advantage of such as the Bucks Skills Show which offers the chance for students to network with nearly 70 employers, take part in interactive exhibits and hear from other inspiring speakers who provide useful information on how to make key decisions about their future careers.
Klaus adds: “I worked with several schools and it is great to see that schools such as High Crest Academy in High Wycombe starting to recognise the importance of this. We had a number of young students taking on board what we are doing and who have pro-actively gone to potential employers to apply for work placements. Imagine the confidence boost and experience that gives the students.
“When we see the students coming back enthusiastically from such an experience and telling their peers about it, it generates such a buzz and good feeling and is the best reward the school and I can get. This only encourages me more to invest more time in the Enterprise Advisor Network in the future and encourage additional companies to get involved to greatly improve on this inspiring initiative.”
To know more get in touch with your local skills hub and the enterprise coordinators in your region or contact Klaus at firstname.lastname@example.org.