How to give back to the community and find top talent with The Prince’s Trust

two young employees on a youth employability programme

Did you know that young people make up 25% of the global working-age population, yet their share in total unemployment is 40%. Young people are almost three times more likely to be unemployed as adults. But there are plenty of things that businesses can do to support the youth with employability.

With Ricoh’s focus on empowering people, we’ve looked closely into the benefits of having a diverse multi-generational workforce. Young people bring innovation, creativity and fresh ideas to your organisation. Therefore, it’s important to assist them in accessing the workplace.

That’s why we are focusing on youth employability in partnership with The Prince’s Trust

They believe that every young person should have the chance to embrace exciting opportunities. The Prince’s Trust helps 11-to-30 year olds who are unemployed or struggling at school to transform their lives.

How does the partnership work?

We’ve been supporting The Prince’s Trust programmes through youth employability work placements and workshops for around five years now. The placements and workshops are included within a 12-week training programme which is run 3-times a year. The charity covers topics such as life-skills and employability. The objective is to get the participants back into employment or further training.      

Topics covered include:

  • Mentoring: A Ricoh mentor shares their knowledge, skills and experience on an ongoing basis with a young person to allow them to develop and progress in their career
  • Interview practice & skills: Workshops are carried out where interview skills are learned and then practised in a typical interview environment. Common questions and effective answers are also discussed and learned
  • CV writing: Workshops are carried out that focus on what a professional CV should look like and guidance is given to the participants to help them create their own CV

The programmes are aimed at those who fall under the governments’ NEET (Not in Education Employment or Training) group and workshops are hosted by Ricoh employees. It’s been a fantastic opportunity for our staff to give something back and utilise the skills and knowledge they have. This also gives young people access to our workplace and new opportunities. It gives those taking part in the workshop a glimpse into the corporate world. And also the chance to learn and practice some of the key skills they will need when pursuing opportunities in further education, employment or training.

“A truly worthwhile experience and very humbling. The young people were inspirational and taught me a lot as well”

Ricardo Silva, National Operations Support Manager, Ricoh

“Having had an input to potentially changing the lives of many young people is a privilege; I feel so proud to have been involved and would recommend it to anyone”

Charles Thompson, SCA Sales Director, Ricoh

Participants who receive training stand to gain more than just new skills. In fact, Ricoh currently employs eight members of staff who previously took part in the scheme. Outside of Ricoh, more than 50% of participants have gone on to find full time employment and 35% are engaged in higher education, meaning 85% of those taking part have progressed successfully.

How can better youth employability benefit my organisation and people?

  • Brings a fresh perspective and a different way of thinking to your business
  • Given the right opportunity and skills; young workers are mostly eager to learn and bring enthusiasm to the workplace
  • It gives your employees an opportunity to give back to the community, improving their sense of wellbeing and advocacy for your organisation
  • Allows your organisation to access employees with valuable skills that may have been missed through traditional recruitment methods
  • Enhances and empowers your people allowing the organisation to further embrace diversity and inclusion

This is an excellent opportunity to reach untapped potential in the youth community, bringing rich talent into your organisation and the chance to work in partnership with a fantastic charity.

It has been an invaluable part of our CSR & People strategy and is absolutely where you should begin when looking at youth employment.

How can I get involved?

You can read more about our work with The Prince’s Trust. And if you want to support the Prince’s Trust, you can find more information on how to do so on their website.

If you‘d like to learn more about our youth employability programme or our corporate social responsibility at Ricoh UK or how to get involved in the initiatives mentioned, feel free to drop me a line on LinkedIn.

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James Deacon

Head of Corporate Responsibility

Read all articles by James Deacon