Develop links with local schools, colleges and Universities to help bridge gaps between education and business and reach out to new talent pools.

One way that employers can help young people transition successfully from education to work is to engage with local schools and colleges. Young adults who encountered four or more employers while at school are, on average, 20 per cent less likely to be NEET (not in full time education, employment or training), earn 18 per cent more when in full-time work and are much more confident that their early careers are going in the right direction than their comparable peers who had low levels of employer contact while at school.

Reaching out to local schools and colleges can also help with your own recruitment and talent attraction. Young people will gain insight into your industry and might be inspired to make educational choices that will help set them up for a future career with your organisation.

There are numerous ways that you could connect with schools and colleges in your area. However, it’s important to bear in mind that in some areas schools may get bombarded with requests from local businesses wanting to work with them. Unfortunately not all schools will have the resource available to manage these requests which is why we recommend going through established channels which should provide an easy route for engagement.

Read The Opportunity-Information Gap to find out why employer engagement is crucial.


Volunteer to deliver careers insight talks via the Inspiring the Future initiative. Over 75 per cent of state schools in England are already signed up to the free programme, which provides schools with a bank of volunteers they can call upon to deliver short talks to students about different career options.

You could also consider becoming a school Governor. By influencing the governance of schools, businesses can forge important links with the world of education, ensuring that the future workforce is equipped with the skills needed for success. You will also benefit from the skills gained by taking on a strategic leadership role, which can be brought back to your organisation.

Your organisation

Inspiring the Future also provides unique links for larger employers to encourage your whole workforce to become involved. To find out more about this option please email inspiring@cipd.co.uk

You could also explore opportunities for collaborating with local Further Education Colleges - with their support your business might be able to introduce an Apprenticeship programme.