BT helps young people get Work Ready

Welsh Government Deputy Minister for Skills, Julie James, today (Thursday, 12 November) visited BT’s Stadium House offices in Cardiff to meet some of the young people benefitting from the successful BT traineeship programme.

Welsh Government Deputy Minister for Skills, Julie James, today (Thursday, 12 November) visited BT’s Stadium House offices in Cardiff to meet some of the young people benefitting from the successful BT traineeship programme.

The seven week course provides young people aged 16-24 with the opportunity to develop employment skills, ranging from basic time-keeping and discipline to advance classes in CV writing, interview techniques, presentation skills and team working.

On average, BT provides work placement opportunities for up to 1000 young people every year across the UK – with 100 being held in Wales.

Deputy Minister for Skills, Julie James, said: “The Welsh Government is absolutely committed to providing young people with opportunities to gain valuable experience of the demands of the workplace.

“It is highly encouraging that high profile employers like BT share our commitment to our young people, particularly those who are not in education, employment or training.  Through programmes like the BT Work Ready campaign, together we are ensuring our young people are equipped with the skills, knowledge and experience to make a positive difference in the workplace of the future.”

Speaking before the event, Alwen Williams, director for BT Cymru Wales, said: “I know from personal experience that there are a number of career paths open to young people and I feel strongly that BT should be doing all it can to help our young people – no matter which route they choose.

“Young people not in education, employment or training are more than twice as likely to feel unable to cope as their peers.

“This programme provides those that fall into this category with the opportunity of gaining valuable skills and experience from a global company. They get to spend time in our operations, learn about the job, take advantage of careers advice and gain qualifications while on the programme.”

All young people are assessed to check their current levels of literacy and numeracy and are set a learning plan to help develop their skills.

Joe Emberton, who recently secured a BT advanced apprenticeship after completing the BT traineeship, said: “The BT Work Ready programme has been a massive help to my life.”

“Before, I was very shy and had zero confidence in myself, but the interview, presentation, and communication skills I gained during the course really helped turn that around. After completing the course I managed to successfully gain an apprenticeship with BT, which was an amazing validation of how far I’d come – I wouldn’t have had a chance at that had I not attended.

“I would absolutely recommend it to anyone who is struggling to get a job – not only does it help you find work, but it can really improve you as a person.”

Around 60 per cent of young people move on into employment, education or further training after completing the popular course.

Alwen Williams joined BT as a member of the Welsh Language Bureau in Colwyn Bay immediately after leaving school. She then gradually worked her way up the career ladder, while gaining qualifications as a BT employee, before being appointed director for BT Cymru Wales in 2015.

The programme forms part of the Movement to Work scheme, a voluntary collaboration of UK employers that are committed to tackling youth unemployment by providing high quality vocational training and work experience.

Young people who would like to take advantage of the BT traineeship programme can emailbttraineeships@bt.com today