05
February
2018
|
10:05
Europe/Amsterdam

MSP applauds graduates of BT work placement in Edinburgh

Summary
Young people kick-starting their careers on a free work placement with BT in Edinburgh have been congratulated by Joe FitzPatrick MSP. The three-week course, combining hands-on work experience, tech know how, coaching and training, was open to anyone aged 16 to 24 not currently in education, employment or training.

Young people kick-starting their careers on a free work placement with BT in Edinburgh have been congratulated by Joe FitzPatrick MSP.

The three-week course, combining hands-on work experience, tech know how, coaching and training, was open to anyone aged 16 to 24 not currently in education, employment or training.

The Edinburgh placement was attended by six young people – Craig Laidlaw and Andrew Wamanowski from Edinburgh; Matthew Kinross and Marc Dryburgh from Livingston; Matthew Reid from Haddington; and Ross Lennie from Kirkcaldy.

Joe FitzPatrick MSP, the Scottish Government Minister for Parliamentary Business, helped celebrate their success by presenting them with their end-of-course certificates.

BT work placements offer the opportunity for people to build confidence and learn practical work skills such as CV writing and interview techniques, as well as practical work skills in areas like computing and customer service.

Attendees are given a certificate and reference showing their attendance and achievements to demonstrate their commitment to prospective employers.

The Edinburgh course also offered seven days of work experience shadowing engineers from Openreach, Scotland’s digital network business, as they worked on the city’s fibre and copper communication links.

Joe FitzPatrick MSP said: “I was delighted to be asked to present certificates to graduates of BT’s Work Ready Programme. This is an excellent project which allows young people to develop skills in a wide range of disciplines with a view to expanding their employment prospects.

“BT’s three-week programme invests in our future workforce. I would encourage anyone aged between 16-24 who is not in education, employment or training to contact BT for further information.”

The young people had different reasons for taking part in the course, including wanting to get some general work experience before applying for jobs; gaining confidence; doing something positive to increase chances in the jobs market; and learning about engineering with a field engineer.

Craig Laidlaw, 23, moved to Edinburgh last September after graduating in psychology and sociology, and is now looking for a change of direction.

He said: “I was thinking about a career in HR and wanted to get a firmer idea if it’s what I want to do. I opted for an office-based placement while others focused on the practical side, out and about with engineers.

“A role managing the engineering workstack looked really interesting and the opportunity to shadow an HR manager will help me decide my next steps. The placement exposes you to different roles across BT, so it’s given me a lot to think about.

“I’d recommend a BT placement to anyone in my situation - it opens your eyes to all the options and it’s up to you to make the most of the opportunity.”

Mark Dames, BT’s head of policy and public affairs in Scotland, said: “As a major employer in Edinburgh, we have a vested interest in helping the city’s young people to be ready for the working life that lies ahead.

“We’ve been really pleased to welcome them and hope they graduate with the increased confidence, experience and skills they need to start the journey on a new career path, whatever direction they decide on next.”

BT plans to offer further placements in Edinburgh and anyone interested in attending can register on the website.

BT work placements are part of the BT Work Ready programme* - a series of initiatives to help young people, particularly from disadvantaged backgrounds, gain employment skills. Since 2014 more than 3,500 young people from around the UK have taken part in the programme.

ENDS

Notes to Editors

* The Work Ready programme is part of BT’s commitment as a founding partner in the Movement to Work coalition of employers. Movement to Work offers work placements to 16-24-year-olds who are not in education, employment or training, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds who can struggle to identify and take advantage of employment opportunities. BT is a lead company for the charity, which is a collaboration of UK employers aiming to tackle youth unemployment by providing high-quality work experience placements.

About BT

BT’s purpose is to use the power of communications to make a better world. It is one of the world’s leading providers of communications services and solutions, serving customers in 180 countries. Its principal activities include the provision of networked IT services globally; local, national and international telecommunications services to its customers for use at home, at work and on the move; broadband, TV and internet products and services; and converged fixed-mobile products and services. BT consists of six customer-facing lines of business: Consumer, EE, Business and Public Sector, Global Services, Wholesale and Ventures, and Openreach.

For the year ended 31 March 2017, BT Group’s reported revenue was £24,062m with reported profit before taxation of £2,354m.

British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group. BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges in London and New York.

For more information, visit www.btplc.com