One Million Chances aims to create a million opportunities for young people.

As a result of the pandemic, young people are more likely to have lost their jobs and experience long-term wage scarring, and the economic slowdown means there are fewer opportunities for them to find meaningful work.

Our research shows that 43% of all young people feel the pandemic has harmed their long-term career prospects and official statistics show there were 166,000 fewer young people in work in June 2021 than in March 2020.

We’re asking employers to join us by offering young people jobs, work experience, volunteering, apprenticeships, internships or mentoring.

We’re asking employers to help young people get their foot in the door.

We’re asking employers to give them a chance.

Help young people understand their career options

Preparing young people for the world of work is not only critical to the UK’s economic future but will benefit organisations by building talent pipelines and improving workforce diversity.

Our new report on youth employment analyses young people’s experiences of careers-based education and their employment pathways.

Based on a survey of over 2,000 people aged 18 to 30, the report:

  • provides an insight into the needs of young people, both in education and as they start out in their careers

  • shows employers how to help young people understand their employment options, how to obtain the skills they need to enter the workplace and how to provide advice to ensure career aspirations are met.

How to attract young people to your organisation

Which scheme is right for you? 

As well as more traditional methods such as work experience, there is a host of new government measures in the UK to give young people a route into work and provide a pool of talent for employers to draw on.  

The CIPD has worked with Strategic Development Network (SDN) to provide a practical guide to help employers understand how these initiatives could contribute to their short- and long-term workforce planning.  

Employers can also use this checklist which sets out the practical steps they would need to go through to engage in these programmes, including engagement with training providers. 

These FAQs deal with some of the common questions and barriers faced. 

The schemes described centre on those in England but similar schemes in the devolved nations are also highlighted. You can take a more detailed look at the devolved nations’ skills landscape in our Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland guides. 

Our call to Government

Young people have been hard hit by the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. Our recent survey has found that, of those young people currently out of work: 

  • 50% have been so for 12 months, 
  • 49% are not confident about finding any work in the next 3 months, and 
  • 14% have applied for more than 30 jobs in the last three months.  

The Government has prioritised support for young people at risk of long-term unemployment via the Kickstart Scheme, in recognition of the damaging long-term consequences to future employment and earnings potential, as well as on their physical and mental health.   

While businesses have stepped up, with almost 250,000 placements approved, just a fraction of the placements have been filled, with the scheme due to end in December 2021.  

Considering ongoing uncertainty in the job market, we're calling on Government to extend the Kickstart Scheme until the end of 2022, to ensure that more young people can benefit from a step up into the jobs market.       

Ways to employ and engage young people


T Levels

Internships and work experience


Get involved

What is the CIPD doing?

Steps Ahead Mentoring

Help schools and colleges

Share your success

Hear from some of the employers/organisations supporting our campaign and helping to create a million opportunities for young people.

At Tesco, we've committed to help over 45,000 young people jumpstart their careers this year, and build employability skills as they grapple with the disruption COVID-19 has caused. We have diverse and interesting opportunities available across our business like the Kickstart scheme, apprenticeships, graduate programmes and internships for young people, whoever they are and whatever their background.

Natasha Adams

Chief People Officer, Tesco

At SOSE, we offer modern apprenticeships and internships which create a vast range of opportunities for young people like me. These opportunities help equip young people with the skills and knowledge they need to face the real world. SOSE tries to immerse them into cross-directorate activities and introduce them to a wide range of people.

Katie Cross

Modern Apprentice – Transformation and Development, South of Scotland Enterprise (SOSE)

At Openreach, by focussing on hiring the right individuals with the right attitude – rather than minimum educational qualifications – we’re bringing even more young people into our field and office based teams, and the results speak for themselves. It’s helping young people take their first steps into a great career and it’s helping us to build and enhance our brilliant team – so it’s a massive win-win.

Kevin Gaughan

Director Resourcing, Learning & Development, Openreach

We offer apprenticeship programmes for up to 80 trainees per year to develop our next generation of accounting, business and tax advisers. The qualifications develop technical knowledge, experiences and behaviours required for an accomplished accounting or tax professional. We also offer work experience placements for school and university students.

Amy Taylor

People Director, PKF Francis Clark

Pret A Manger is a great company for young people to start off and to develop their careers. Many of our managers today started with us as team members and have gone on to run their own Pret shop, managing large teams with full P&L accountability. We have great internal training where people can learn, grow, and become strong business managers.

David Carter

UK People Director, Pret A Manger

DWP offers a range of opportunities to support young people into employment, including programmes such as Apprenticeships, Social Mobility, Movement to Work, Care Leavers, Autism Exchange, Summer Diversity Internship placements and more. This provides young people with the opportunity to gain new skills and confidence to support their career development.

Debbie Alder

People, Capability and Place Group Director General, DWP

We believe passionately about creating opportunities to unlock the talent and potential of today’s young people. From work placements for local schools and colleges, apprenticeships, the Government Kickstart programme, paid internships and a graduate programme, we aim to inspire and provide support for young people into employment and thereafter.

Dr Tracey Leghorn

Chief HR and H&S Officer, SUEZ Recycling and Recovery UK 

At Dorchester Collection we attract and develop exceptional talent. As you start your career, we will have an exciting opportunity for you in our hotels. From work experience placements in our fast-paced kitchens, apprenticeships in our innovative engineering departments or a global graduate programme, we have the perfect pathway for you. Change your future and ours.

Eugenio Pirri

Chief People & Culture Officer, Dorchester Collection

Compass Group UK & Ireland has made a commitment to support the skills development of both existing employees and new talent. We work closely with our partners, training providers and colleges to deliver industry-leading, aspirational and structured career pathways that offer genuine opportunities for all roles and ages across all our business sectors.

Jonathan Foot

Head of Apprenticeships and Early Careers, Compass Group UK & Ireland

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