Take on a young person – you’ll be amazed what you get in return

There’s lots of help for businesses in Scotland to attract, recruit, train and pay young people. From arranging quality short term work placements to creating full time jobs, there’s a package to help businesses.

This employer support comes from the Scottish Government, Scotland’s 32 local authorities and a range of public sector agencies.

The aim is to highlight the benefits young people can bring to workplaces and show that they are cost-effective to recruit and train.  Young workers are flexible, easy to mould into each organisation’s culture and can form a crucial part of a company’s talent pipeline and succession planning strategy.

Two young people tell us their stories:

BT’s priorities include attracting future talent and securing jobs through its apprenticeship programmes across local communities.  BT is committed to continuing to encourage personal and business development, and offers a wide range of apprenticeship roles from field based engineers to office based customer service people.

Brendan Dick, BT Scotland Director, said:

“BT’s significant presence in Scotland is based on the success and skills of BT people. Central to that success is the focus we have on apprenticeships, where many young BT colleagues take the opportunity to strengthen their capabilities.

“They excel in their roles, contribute to the local economy and develop great skills for their long term career.  BT prides itself in focusing on skills and young people and in doing so also contributes to the critical role all of society has in delivering youth employment.”

Lauren MacQueen

Lauren Macqueen

These customer service employees include Lauren Macqueen, who works for BT in Dundee.  Lauren says the best part of her job is meeting new people – including newly recruited modern apprentices and seeing them successfully shape their careers.

Twenty-two year old Lauren has become a Modern Apprenticeship Ambassador and hopes to encourage other businesses to recruit MAs using the programme.


A young man from a care background has found his ideal career through a modern apprenticeship with Marriott Hotels. Stephen Burns, 25 from Glasgow faced more challenges than most when it came to finding a job, but the modern apprentice scheme has proved a winner for him.

Stephen said:

“I was unemployed for quite a while after I left school and was really struggling.  Some of my extended family really wanted to help me but simply couldn’t manage to and I think many people from a care background suffer from a lack of confidence, which certainly affected me.”

Stephen Burns

Stephen Burns

That all changed in January 2011 when he joined Glasgow Marriott Hotel on a 13 week placement under the Targeted Pathways Apprenticeship programme, which was developed to help individuals who faced additional barriers in achieving employment and who would require additional support in the workplace.

“The placement really opened my eyes to something new and made me realise that I wanted to try something different.  Being offered the modern apprentice opportunity when I finished the placement gave me a real glimmer of hope for the future and completing it really helped me.  I’ve almost finished my apprenticeship in Hospitality, Supervision and Leadership and I’ve enjoyed the challenge.”

John Connelly, Training Officer with the Marriott, is delighted with Stephen’s progress.

“This is not just a tick box experience and Stephen took his opportunity on board and has a wealth of evidence to show what he’s achieved. He’s an excellent illustration of how well the MA scheme can work.”

Find out more

Read the What young people bring to your business leaflet.

Employers can find out more by visiting: www.ourskillsforce.co.uk/youth or by calling Skills Development Scotland on 0800 783 6000.


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