To date, 25,000 students have benefited from the Deloitte employability course, and by the end of the 2012/13 academic year, 40,000 students will have received the training.
According to the CBI, 69% of companies believe school leavers have inadequate business awareness, and more than 50% found shortcomings in their ability to manage themselves. There were also high concerns over a lack of English and numeracy skills in school-leavers. To tackle this problem, Deloitte created the Employability Skills Initiative to provide specialised training to enable further education college teachers to equip young school-leavers with the skills needed to secure employment.
By focusing on providing the training and resources which teachers need to deliver these skills effectively, the programme has a significant impact on the skills, attitudes and behaviours of young people from disadvantaged backgrounds, giving them the qualifications and competencies needed to realise their potential. The students who complete the course graduate with an Edexcel level 2 BTEC qualification in employability, along with the improved business and personal skills required to enhance their chances when looking for their first job.
The course focuses not only on helping young people to secure jobs, but also to retain and succeed in them. The Deloitte Employability Skills Initiative represents a £2 million investment from Deloitte over six years. It recently received a 'Big Tick' from Business in the Community in the education category of its Awards for Excellence and is shortlisted for the overall national award.
The latest 'train the trainer' event takes place in central London today, when Deloitte and City & Islington College's Employability Centre for London will train 20 teachers from colleges across London and the South West. Further training events will take place at eight other UK locations over the next two months, training more than 60 teachers. Bob Thust, head of corporate responsibility at Deloitte, said: "We believe in developing the talents of young people so they can realise their full potential.
We recognise it is our responsibility to ensure we contribute to developing the talent of future generations, ensuring they are equipped with the skills they and UK business need to succeed in the 21st century economy. "Feedback tells us the course has a tangible, lasting impact on trainers and students.
It gives young students, often from disadvantaged backgrounds, an understanding of what will be expected of them in the workplace and the skills they need to meet those expectations." The Deloitte trainers go through the same exercises and activities that students participate in, resulting in a positive impact on their teaching styles and techniques.
Thust added: "The distinguishing feature of the employability course is that learning is based around practical exercises, simulations, role-plays and scenarios that replicate real employment and workplace situations."
Key objectives of the employability skills course are:
· To build the self-esteem and self-awareness of learners;
· To enable learners to experience the reality of life in the workplace;
· To develop the attitudes and behaviours required in the workplace; and
· To develop learners' interpersonal skills, written and verbal communication skills and team working skills.