What is Work Experience?

Work experience provides a ‘hands-on’ invaluable opportunity for young people to gain insight and understanding into the world of work. Giving young people the chance to gain knowledge, experience and skills from a professional working environment will encourage, inspire and develop the confidence and attitude of a young individual.

Work experience can involve a young person carrying out a particular task, a range of duties or shadowing an employee. The aim of work experience is to enhance the perceptions of young people and emphasis how important learning is to succeed in the workplace.

“An effective Work Experience Placement on average lasts between 2 and 8 weeks.”

Could you offer Work Experience?

  • Is your business interested in supporting young people?
  • Are you committed to engaging with your community and developing local talent and skills?
  • Could you provide an unemployed young person with a positive experience of the working world?
  • Are you able to provide an unemployed young person insight into working life through a variety of tasks and experiences?

If you have answered YES to the majority of these questions then scroll down to find out how to get involved and offer Work Experience…

Why should you be involved & What will you get?

Offering work experience not only gives a young person a invaluable opportunity but it also allows you as a business to benefit and grow from the experience.

The placement will give you the ….

– Opportunity to promote and raise your business profile in the community and to potential new customers

– Opportunity to develop the supervisory and management skills and increase motivation of your workforce

– Opportunity to access a fresh talent pool who can a bring new ideas ,enthusiasm and energy to your business

– Opportunity to share your expertise, improve a young person’s skill set and influence a young person’s career choice and aspirations

– Opportunity to access a cost effective new recruitment channel and potential future employees

– Opportunity to trail a young person before you offer a job or apprenticeship role.

How to get involved? A step-by-step guide


Can your business accommodate for a work experience person?

Could you provide a young people with a positive experience of the working world?


Once you are sure your business can become a work experience host talk to your local provider, local Jobcentre Plus, schools & colleges to see how they can help you


It is important to plan what your work experience person will be doing for the duration of their placement. Will they be involved in aspects of daily duties, tasks, responsibilities or will they been learning from employee shadowing


Advertise your placement(s) opportunity through social media, your website as well as through your chosen point of contact e.g. Jobcentre, school etc


It is important to interview a small number of people for the placement opportunity to ensure the correct candidate with ideas, enthusiasm, energy and interest is chosen for the position


Once you have chosen, notified and arranged start date, hours etc the placement can begin. (national minimum wage guidance)

Work Trials

Work Trials are aimed at helping unemployed people get into employment.

What is a Work Trial?

A Work Trial is a trial in an actual job vacancy. An employer can offer a work trial if the job vacancy is for 16 hours or more a week and lasts at least 13 weeks. The work trial can last up to 30 days.

Employer benefits are:

-It’s risk free – you can try the person out before making a final decision
-You know they’re committed because they’re volunteering to do it
-There are no wage costs – people continue to get their benefits
-There’s very little paperwork and it’s fuss-free

For more information contact your local Jobcentre.

Click HERE to view the Jobcentre Plus guide to work trials.

tSpace’s top 5 employer tips:

Research work experience placements & work trials before offering them *Be in the know*

Check with your insurers that they agree to the work placement taking place

Meet the young person before they start to gain an idea of their expectations & agree suitable targets & achievements

Stay in-touch with the young person after they’re placement has finished, you never know they could be your summer job temp