Employers are boosting work experience for the first time since the start of the pandemic, but many opportunities remain hybrid, reports Institute of Student Employers (ISE).
The poll showed that employers are strengthening their talent pipelines with 71% offering work experience this year, compared to 60% in 2021.
Work experience was one of the biggest casualties of the pandemic with employers cutting opportunities by 40%.This year students will find more short-term work experience and internships available as well as one-year work placements.
Despite many businesses mandating employees’ return to in-person work, many work experience programmes continue to be hybrid.
Stephen Isherwood, chief executive of Institute of Student Employers said: “After a scarce few years we’re seeing a return for work experience this summer. This is good news for students and employers as the lack of opportunities has made it tough for young people to develop the skills they need to start work. It’s also dampened their confidence.
“People who get work experience are more likely to do well in the jobs market as they leave education. But this year students also need to be aware that they may be asked to work in a hybrid way, particularly those on shorter schemes. All of the usual rules still apply, but no matter how remote students may feel, there is a job to do, they are at work and there are expectations. Look smart, be punctual, turn the camera on and look engaged. It’s important to behave in the same professional way as you would if you were in person.”
Engagement with senior leaders in the organisation has fallen from of the most used development approached (87% in 2021), to one of the least used in 2022 (28% in 2022). This is due to students and graduates spending less time physically present in their organisation.
Work experience provides an opportunity for employers to reconnect with people early on in their careers. Students would benefit from follow up emails after meetings, having a virtual coffee and mentoring.