Work Inspiration works with employers to ensure that students’ vocational interests and career choices are matched to their work experience placement.

Does the thought of having a student follow you about for a week fill you with dread? Turn this thinking upside down. Through our Work Inspiration initiative, we’ll help you develop ideas and make them available online. In addition to week-long work placements, how about offering careers talks or hosting an open day?

In each academic year, approximately 28,000 young people are entitled to a work experience placement as part of the entitlement framework. Evidence suggests that perhaps half do not take up the opportunity.

Employers in Northern Ireland have an important role to play in providing responsible work experience programmes to ensure the retention and development of skills and ultimately securing our future economy.

Work experience can be a life-changing experience for young people, making the world of work relevant to them and allowing them to observe the behaviours of adults in the workplace.

Benefits to Employers

  • Relieves some of the administrative burden
  • Helps employers plan and manage their work experience provision
  • Advice offered on insurance, indemnity and health and safety issues
  • Allows the organisation to offer meaningful work placements or inspirations and be fair and equitable in their links with schools
  • Provide advice on Child Protection to ensure staff know what is expected of them
  • Advice on school expectations of the placement or inspiration

How can you get involved

Work Inspiration offers employers three packages for work inspirations with post primary schools:

  • The Ad Hoc requests packages – Work Inspiration will make requests to employers six to eight weeks in advance. Employers then indicate whether or not they are in a position to offer work experience on these dates
  • The Static Date package – Employers set the dates on which they are available to offer work experience and Work Inspiration allocates students accordingly. The dates don’t change so organisations know exactly when to expect students.
  • The Work Inspiration Open Day or Outreach package – These can complement work experience outlined in Option 1 or 2 or can be used as an alternative. These are inspirational opportunities for students which provide an insight into a particular company or specific career sector and allow groups of interested students to attend

Some organisations use a combination of the above options

Contact: Joanne Mehaffy