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Beyond Placement Extinction Coming up for Air Francesca Walker Employability & Alumni Fellow Michael Bowerman Research Assistant.

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Presentation on theme: "Beyond Placement Extinction Coming up for Air Francesca Walker Employability & Alumni Fellow Michael Bowerman Research Assistant."— Presentation transcript:

1 Beyond Placement Extinction Coming up for Air Francesca Walker Employability & Alumni Fellow Michael Bowerman Research Assistant

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5 Background Why? 2008/09 – Commenced Research – 670 students surveyed. 2009/10 – Recession required greater research – 650 students surveyed. Grand total = 1,320

6 Background The great decline

7 Methodology & Rationale 2008/09 Pilot Questionnaire Final Questionnaires –Year 1 –Year 2 –Year 3 – Finalists –Year 3 – Placement –Year Students Responded

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13 Findings – Year 1 Placement Length 53% felt that a year was ‘just right’ 37% didn’t know whether the length of time was right or not Student Mobility 37% of students would be willing to travel up to thirty miles for their placement 17% were willing to travel over thirty miles the remainder indicated a preference for an overseas placement. 50% lived at home with their families 50% had chosen to live in University accommodation or were living with a partner in their own accommodation

14 Findings – Year 1 (Continued) The Value of Work Experience 88% of those surveyed indicated that it was of significant importance to the employer Students in Employment 66% of students were in employment of some kind, whether paid or voluntary 24% indicated that their work was directly related to their course of study

15 Findings – Year 2 Placement Length 67% felt that a year was ‘just right’ 20% didn’t know whether the length of time was right or not. Student Mobility 38% of students would be willing to travel up to thirty miles for their placement 21% were willing to travel over thirty miles the remainder indicated a preference for an overseas placement. 38% lived at home with their families 63% had chosen to live in University accommodation or were living with a partner in their own accommodation

16 Findings – Year 2 (Continued) The Value of Work Experience 88% of those surveyed indicated that it was of significant importance to the employer. Students in Employment 72% of students were in employment of some kind, whether paid or voluntary 32% indicated that their work was directly related to their course of study

17 Findings – Year 3 - Finalists Reasons for Opting out A Shorter Placement? 44% indicated that had the placement been shorter, they would have reconsidered it What would be the ideal length of time? 50% indicated that the placement could be covered over the summer months 50% felt that work experience could be incorporated within the three years of their degree.

18 Findings – Year 3 – Finalists (Continued) Student Mobility 60% indicated that they would be willing to travel up to thirty miles for a placement. Opt Out – Reflective View 56% noted that they had no regrets 33% regretted not undertaking a placement, indicating that they now lacked experience and were therefore at a disadvantage when entering the workforce The Value of Work Experience 58% indicated that work experience was important and that employers expected it 29% indicated that employers felt that it was ‘quite important’

19 Findings – Year 3 – Finalists (Continued) Students in Employment 76% indicated that they currently had some kind of employment 29% of which was related to their course of study Preparing for Post-Graduate Employment 50% of those surveyed indicated that they had not started looking for post- graduation opportunities 11% had a secured a job 20% had interviews This survey has was taken in February & March 2009

20 Findings – Year 3 – Students on Placement A Shorter Placement? 100% indicated that a year in the workplace was the right length of time to gain experience within a role Student Mobility 72% of the group travelled between 1 and 30 miles to their place of work 24% travelled over 30 miles 4% chose a placement overseas Other Mobility Issues 25% chose their placement so that they could remain at home 44% already lived at home with their families when they chose their placement

21 Findings – Year 3 – Students on Placement (Continued) Value of the Work Placement increased confidence improved organisation skills analytical and decision-making skills were improved Skills to be developed Literacy was an issue that students would like to improve upon, and is one of the areas noted by employers of graduates as being weak What would they have done differently?

22 Findings – Year 3 – Students on Placement (Continued) The Value of Work Experience 96% noted that work experience was of importance

23 Findings – Year 4 A Shorter Placement? 96% noted that a year was the right amount of time to be in a placement Student Mobility 57% remained within 30 miles of their homes 14% travelled more than 30 miles 29% took the option of an overseas placement Placement Accommodation 61% either found alternative accommodation, or were assisted in the relocation process 39% stayed at home

24 Findings – Year 4 (Continued) Work Placement Value increased confidence team working communication skills Areas for Development negotiating and influencing skills analysis and decision making skills numeracy What would they have done differently? greater research into the companies that they were applying to earlier applications to improve the quality and choice of placements available to them

25 Findings – Year 4 (Continued) Students in Employment 65% currently in employment 19% of which was related to their course of study Preparing for post-graduate employment 22% of this group had already secured work after graduation 14% of whom were returning to their placement employer

26 Then the Recession Hit!

27 So what did we do about all that we had discovered? Immobility Encouraging students to talk to students on placement living away from home/university to share their experiences. Lack of Direction Some serious hand holding and badgering. Work Experience is Essential Development of ‘Employer Forums’. Key Influencers Meet the Tutors.

28 Significant Events: 1996/97 - Last Grant Funded Intake 1999/00 - Optional Placements Introduced

29 I couldn't find the right role26% 3 Years at Uni is long enough17% Already had work experience15% Didn't want a break from academia6% Undertook a shorter work placement4% Placements on offer were too far away4% Just didn't want to4% I had already taken time out (Intercalation)3% The course was enjoyable but I didn't want a career in it3% Money3% Started a placement but it didn't work out3% Working would get me used to having money3% On reflection, the course was wrong for me1% Enjoyed being a student too much1% Didn't realise the importance of work experience1% Overseas student1% Payment of tuition fees whilst on placement was unacceptable1% Unexpected circumstances1% Wanted to get experience post graduation1% Reasons for Opting Out

30 What would they have done differently? Apply for more roles32% Apply earlier24% Get the job offer in writing before starting (so you know what you're to be doing)12% Research organisations before application8% Use the Placements service more4% Choose a placement closer to home4% Explore roles in smaller businesses4% Don't just apply because it is close to home4% Reflect on my personality and the roles suited to me4% Would have liked to have experienced consultancy4%

31 We continued our research… …with a recession in mind

32 Who we surveyed 2009/10 Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 – Finalists who opted out of a placement Year 3 – On Placement Year 4 – Finalists We finished collecting data on April 1 st (really)

33 2009/10 - Findings Parents of Generation Y Living at home is even more important! Placements influence the choice of Course. Students want to do a placement. Future Thinking. Half fees for the placement year is a barrier. Too much competition for placements.

34 What we’re doing now….. Mock Assessment Centres Development of online Psychometric tests Mock Interviews Peer views The Parent’s Survival Guide The Film! Social Networking Regular Visits – Year 1 is a priority Serious monitoring Gorilla Marketing Local Marketing Campaign

35 Coming up for air…. What have we learned?

36 We have stayed the same…. The students have changed. The climate has changed. Communication has changed. Students are waking up to the fact that the party is over. Employers are seeing a rich field of talent – only the best will do. We all have to work harder and communicate better. It has been a wake-up call for us all.

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40 Has our knowledge and interventions made a difference? YES!

41 Thank you for participating We’re here for the full conference – please come and talk to us….

42 Francesca Walker Michael Bowerman

43 2006/07

44 2007/08

45 2008/09


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