Direction Employment gets Employers’ Cooperation in Youth Employment Strategy
Direction Employment is an innovative project funded by the EEA and Norway Grants Fund for Youth Employment, to address the lack of opportunities to “NEET” youth across Europe. This cohort of the partner countries’ populations typically suffer from multiple discriminations based on individual circumstances. They may be members of traveller groups or Roma, they may be refugees with no fixed abode or single parents. Additionally, marginalised and excluded people targeted by Direction Employment are LGBTI, or people with disabilities.
Direction Employment sets out to create a progressive pedagogy, with high interest and customised approaches, including gamified methodologies to motivate participants. In order to ensure that the strategies are effective and succeed in training the participants to fulfil roles and needs of the market, the involvement of employers in the design of the programmes, and in mentoring, supporting and providing internships for the trainees is essential.
The project partners have developed the innovative curriculum and training delivery programme to contribute to promoting the values of diversity and inclusion in the labour market. This included consideration of factors such as race/ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, disability etc. It is also an ambition of the DE solution to use this new training to promote global and digital citizenship, to which responsible and ethical employers are expected to contribute.
At its core, however, DE is a novel way of educating vulnerable young people, which will enhance their employability in competitive, high-technology industries. To this end, the partners have worked with local employers to create the DE educational model with its innovative curriculum, and they have tested it in pilot courses in each country, with different target groups availing of the opportunity.
Sustainability is an important success factor, and this has been endorsed by many of the collaborating employers. The new training model will be brought to a wider audience of participants through the setting up of a mobile smart classroom with fully trained tutors to share the learning provided in the initial training provided across the regions of the partner countries.
The involvement of employers has proven crucial and invaluable in this process. A comprehensive Employers’ User Guide has been produced to guide them in getting the maximum benefit from all aspects of the DE programme.
It is a practical resource to support and inspire employers who wish to increase the pool of employment candidates available to them. It provides ideas on how to work with the young DE graduates, the benefits of recruiting these enthusiastic young people, and of networking with other employers also in the scheme. It shows how DE offers employers an all-inclusive, free of charge service to recruit, train and hire new talent for specific roles in the IT domain.