EMPLOYERS GUIDE TO THE OPENING DOORS PROGRAMME

“Every pupil should have first-hand experiences of the workplace through work visits, work shadowing and/or work experience to help their exploration of career opportunities and expand their networks. Every year, from the age of 11, pupils should participate in at least one meaningful encounter with an employer.”

Prof John Holman 2014 (Gatsby Foundation Report for Good Career Guidance)

Teacher on the phone to RSA

Step 1

Contact NWEDR if you wish to be featured in the online brochure. Appoint a colleague to oversee the programme and liaison with the schools.

Teacher Creates Itinerary

Step 2

Put together an ‘itinerary or an offer to schools from your business – click here for ideas on how to plan a workplace visit.

Schools Contact Businesses

Step 3

Schools will contact you with a date, a short brief of what they want out of the visit. Advise them of the number of students you can accommodate, and what you can offer in relation to their brief.

Choose a date for the workplace visit

Step 4

Agree a date, time, itinerary and number of students. Will you require students to wear particular footwear? Will teachers need to bring ID? Ensure all your requirements are communicated.

Paperwork

Step 5

Schools are subject to scrutiny when taking students out on any visit. Be prepared to send documents to the teacher. They may require;

  • A valid public insurance liability certificate up £10m
  • A visitor’s Risk Assessment
  • An itinerary of what the students will be doing during the visit. (As mentioned in step 2)
Student Workplace Visit

Step 6

The school should make contact to confirm a few days before the visit, if not please make contact with the school to ensure everything is in place for the visit to go ahead.

Welcome the Students

Step 7

On the day of the visit, please ensure there is somebody to meet the group in reception or in the carpark. Allocate a space for the mini-bus if you think there will be lack of spaces!  Having a bus full of excited students with nowhere to park, and not sure where to go will add to teacher stress levels!

Opening Doors to Business - Have Fun

Step 8

Enjoy the experience! These students could be your future apprentices, or this visit may influence the decisions they make about their future. Be prepared to answer questions about how much people earn.  It’s the number one question!

OPENING DOORS TO BUSINESS

Thank you for agreeing to host an Opening Doors to Business Session. The following tips and ideas may help you to plan the day.

student briefing

Part 1

Contextualise (20 minutes) Can you take the students to a room for an introduction & briefing? Tell them some important facts about your business, some examples of what you could include are below;

  • When was it established?
  • How many people work there?
  • What your role is? How many different types of roles there are?
  • What is the average salary of the roles?
  • Is there a product you could show them?
  • Students love talking about money any facts/figures you can tell them
  • Marketing and branding of your business -u logo, social media, website? Include photographs and images where possible
Student Tour - Opening Doors

Part 2

Tour (30 minutes depending on size of company) Think about what areas of your workplace you could show to the students, Some ideas below of what could be included in the tour to make it a bit more interesting and interactive.

An office might seem boring to most adults but you could point out the roles of the people who work there, maybe someone at a desk will be willing to share what they are doing and how this supports the business? This will support the notion that every member of the business is part of a wider team and that without this element- other people cannot function in their role.

A factory floor – stop at different machines and explain the function – could an operator explain the process of what he/she’s doing? Could they talk about how/why they are doing this job? What qualifications or skills were required?

Practical task- Is there a practical task that students could complete? Fixing or joining something? A computer related task – programming? Making? Tasting? Role Play?

Demonstration – If they cannot participate in the task, is a member of your team able to demonstrate a skill?

Student Questions

Part 3 Q & A  (15 minutes.)

 – If you are offering refreshments this could be a good opportunity to serve them –

This section will allow you to regroup and give students the opportunity to ask questions about the business. If you want to involve other employees, this exercise could be carried out in a ‘speed meeting’ format. Be prepared to answer a range of questions from the very basic to quite technical! If the group is shy you could ask the students to write down the questions on a piece of paper and pull them out of the hat,’ The types of questions you may get asked are;

  • How much do you earn?
  • What were your GCSE options?
  • How do you use maths and English in your day-to-day role?
Student Workplace Visit

Part 3B Recruitment (10 minutes)

Please take this opportunity to let the students know about what you look for in an employee and what your recruitment process is – outline the following;

  • Skills required
  • Qualifications
  • Personal Qualities
  • Training
  • Work Experience

This is quite a significant element of the visit and will demonstrate to the students that these things are important to employers and hearing this from you could be the push or drive they need to work harder at school!

Recruitment & Skills Needed

Part 4 Evaluation & Finish (10 minutes)

Take this opportunity to get some feedback – maybe use a post-it note exercise where they write one thing that they have learned about either (or all) of the following;

  • What have you learned about this business?
  • Tell us one highlight of your visit?
  • How has this visit helped you?
  • What skills do you think an employer is looking for?
  • Also get some verbal feedback and gather post it notes to share with school and employees.

“You can teach a student a lesson for a day; but if you can teach him to learn by creating curiosity, he will continue the learning process as long as he live.”

Clay P. Bedford