Firms give kids careers advice

BUSINESS leaders are joining forces to deliver speeches to children at the UK’s state schools, in an attempt to improve employment prospects.

Robert Peston, business editor for BBC News, is spearheading Inspiring the Future, a scheme aimed at bringing more state school pupils into contact with potential employers and careers advice. Its existing sister scheme, Speakers 4 Schools, arranges talks for comprehensive school pupils focused on aiming high and achieving their goals, but the new speeches are more “practical and down to earth, focused on what it’s like to do a certain job,” Peston explained.

It comes after a wealth of research pointing to the improved career prospects of students that have contact and interaction with employers.

Students with four or more employer contacts are five times less likely to be out of education, employment or training, and independent school pupils were 30 per cent more likely to have had talks from employers.

Sir Roger Carr, president of the Confederation for British Industry, said, “We desperately need to tackle the corrosive effects of high youth unemployment in the UK, so I would urge employers to sign up.”

“There is nothing more compelling for young people thinking about their future careers than meeting...inspirational people who do the jobs they are considering,” he added.

Speakers signed up for the project include Will Butler Adams, managing director of Brompton Cycles, Karren Brady of West Ham United and Lucy Scott-Moncrieff, the incoming Law Society President.

AN email popped into The Capitalist’s in-tray last week just minutes after it had emerged that Barclays had settled an interest rate manipulation case with regulators. Since then Barclays and its directors have barely been out of the news, with virtually everybody weighing in with an opinion about why the bank’s directors and its traders are not people to spend polite company with.

The email in question came from Barclays Research and simply said the outlook (for EU ETS) was “Worse before better”. Quite.