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The benefits of work experience

Why is offering work experience important?

  • Is your business growing and needs to increase its workforce? 
  • Do you have a succession plan in place? 
  • Do you need to bring new skills to the business? 
  • Do you need to engage fresh new talent?

If you have answered ‘yes’ to any of these questions, have you considered offering work experience opportunities? Or have you experimented with work experience in the past and want to improve your current programme?

The benefits of work experience

Employers that offer work experience typically report significant benefits to their business including:

  • promoting workforce diversity 
  • developing the supervisory and management skills of their current workforce 
  • enhancing their public profile by supporting their local community 
  • accessing a pool of hidden talent – people who offer enthusiasm and a fresh perspective to their business.

Work experience is a valuable workforce planning tool which will support your recruitment practices. It will enable you to inspire your future workforce so they will be knocking on your door as soon as they are ready to start their career.

The different types of work experience

There are a myriad of work experience opportunities available to employers and it is important to find the right programme that will fit with your organisation’s priorities. Work experience is typically defined as short-term experience of employment, typically arranged for students in education from the age of 14 through to 25.

Work experience may include: 

Work Placements - lasting anywhere between a day and a few weeks, during which a young or inexperienced person is immersed in a specific working environment in order to learn how things work.

Internships - programmes designed to give people, particularly graduates who already know what career path they’d like to follow, the opportunity to put their academic or theoretical knowledge into practice, in a working environment.

Work Shadowing - employers will take on students for a short period of time such as a week. This enables the students to get an insight into a role or a company whilst they are still at school, college or university.

We’re here to help

The aim of Essex Opportunities is to enable our Essex employers to make informed decisions about the types of work experience they are able to offer young people.

We will cover 5 main areas including:

• Engaging with schools from years 10 through to 13
• Understanding T Levels and the requirements of T Level Industry Placements
• Traineeships
• Study Programmes
• Forging closer relationships with Higher Education establishments to enable your organisation to tap into the University’s student talent.


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