Successful businesses help shape the future workforce

Jay Wheeler, an enterprise adviser for the Careers & Enterprise Company
Jay Wheeler, an enterprise adviser for the Careers & Enterprise Company

Major employers and schools are teaming up to help prepare young people for the world of work as part of a new programme being rolled out across the county.

Hertfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), in partnership with Youth Connexions (Hertfordshire County Council), is delivering The Careers & Enterprise Company – a nationwide initiative which forges closer relationships between schools, colleges and employers.

Several schools in Dacorum and the surrounding area have signed up already, inclduing Kings Langley School, Astley Cooper School, Cavendish School, Tring School and The Hemel Hempstead School

At its heart are local employers, who will act as mentors by working with senior leadership teams in schools and colleges to help connect the curriculum to future work opportunities; provide access to workplaces and act as role models to young people.

Several large key sector employers have already signed up, including manufacturing giant Liebherr GB Ltd and Santander.

Other companies including Ocado, Airbus and Affinity Water have also expressed interest in becoming involved.

David Williams, cabinet member for enterprise, education & skills at Herts County Council, said: “By creating closer partnerships between schools and employers, the scheme is a great opportunity to help students succeed and have access to role models in the business world.

“There are also benefits for local businesses who need a strong pool of local workers to choose from and who can highlight employability skills to the young people involved.”

A team of enterprise co-ordinators are actively engaging with schools and 
colleges to develop an action plan to support career development and to match them with an enterprise adviser.

Jay Wheeler, director of a market research company in Hatfield, was one of the first to sign up as an enterprise adviser. He said: “As a market research company engagement with the local community is really important to our business. The young people of today are the employees and customers of tomorrow, so it is essential for businesses to share their expertise and insight with schools.

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