Nearly a third of students believe it will take over a year to secure a job


Nearly one in three 16-18 year olds expect to wait over a year to secure a job after leaving full time education, according to research commissioned by Young Enterprise.

The Young Enterprise Youth Unemployment report: ‘A Generation in Crisis’ reveals that half of young people say greater international competition for jobs contributes to the difficulty in securing work, while 46 per cent still blame the ongoing impact of the recession, saying that there are fewer jobs available.

Unequal opportunities for young people from different social backgrounds were also raised, with 16 per cent highlighting that unpaid internships are only accessible to individuals from high-income families.

Young people are acutely aware of the difficulties of securing work after finishing full time education, with nearly half recognising that an academic education alone is not enough to secure a professional job.

58 per cent of young people believe they will struggle to secure work due to not getting enough experience of work or education in entrepreneurship. A further 31 per cent feel they are not being taught the necessary key employment skills required in the workplace such as teamwork, confidence and problem solving; while a third of students said they are not given enough guidance and consultation when choosing their career.

Research found that overall 90 per cent of students say they believe employers expect too much from school leavers, assuming they should be able to instantly adapt to the world of work and multi-task in new environments. Of this figure, 34 per cent think employers expect too many qualifications.

Michael Mercieca, chief executive of Young Enterprise comments on the research: “Youth unemployment has been  a blight on the lives of millions of young people across the UK for too long. It brings with it serious financial and social implications both for the individuals and for wider economic productivity and growth. Academic attainment is only part of the journey to building a well-rounded individual and workforce.”

“It is essential that schools, charities and businesses work together in a long-term, national programme to ensure that all young people have the opportunity to develop these essential character skills and gain work experience and a sense of entrepreneurial spirit – no matter what their financial background.”