Blog - A Recruiter’s Perspective

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"What are you going to do when you leave school son..?"

Elite Web admin - Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Chatting with my son the other day, discussing his options, as he is rapidly approaching school leaving age.

Hard to believe that someone with boyish good looks such as mine has a child that is nearly sixteen, but that is a different subject entirely.


Having been fortunate enough to build a successful career in recruitment, you can imagine I take more than a passing interest in the career prospects of my son. Now, my son is a great lad, very pleasant, not perhaps the strongest academically but a hard worker and someone who, like me, will be initially much more suited to a practical job.

With this in mind, we set about looking at which route to take next, and to be honest it has me baffled.

 On the one hand he seems to be actively encouraged to stay on at school for another two years, but I can see no real purpose in this, and on the other he doesn’t appear to have a great deal of choice. 

Nowadays it seems that all children are being encouraged to head to university, but is this really benefiting the UK?

 Being the owner and Director of a specialist recruitment agency, we are frustrated, as are our clients at the lack of skilled personnel entering the job market. It appears that it is university or nothing if you want to get into engineering or similar.

This is not addressing a very real skills gap in the UK job market – core manufacturing personnel are becoming increasingly harder to find. Toolmakers, machinists, assembly staff, sheet metal workers and the like are very much in demand – especially in the South East of England.

It is getting more and more difficult to source these type of trades and the workforce is not getting any younger.

Why are we not doing apprenticeships any longer? Only a handful of companies we deal with at Elite Employee run apprenticeship schemes, and at nowhere near the numbers that they used to. 

The balance needs to be redressed, no point having a degree sitting behind the wheel of a mini cab.

We were all made to be different. Not everybody is suited to or needs to go to university, some of our young people are destined to use their hands to make their way in the world.

This blog is not necessarily the view of Elite Employee Ltd, recruitment agency. It is the opinion of the individual recruitment consultant.



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