As an organisation focused on engaging young people as early as possible in our business and industry, we were delighted when we were recently invited to attend a Careers Fair at St Peter’s Catholic High School, based in Wigan.
22nd October 2019
by Ian Bailey
HR Business Partner
Nostalgia was the order of the day, attributed to the ringing of a school bell, the distinct chatter of pupils in the yard/corridors, the acoustics in a spacious Sports Hall, and the resounding cry of ‘Sir’ and ‘Miss’
From my perspective, it seems like an age ago since I was navigating my way through High School, having to make decisions regarding my future and ultimately thinking about what to do once I hung my school blazer up. One thing that was missing during that time was the opportunity to interact with prospective employers and delve further into career pathways. These days Careers Fairs at least give the opportunity for future employees more than some food for thought.
Around 800 pupils attended the Careers Fair (not all at once may I add), ranging from Year 8 to Year 11. There were a host of employers from both the Public and Private sectors, as well as an array of FE providers. This provided Maintel, always keen to support young people and their learning journey, a wonderful opportunity to engage with the pupils. Many had come equipped with thought-provoking questions, which was very encouraging and fully demonstrated the forward-thinking initiative we welcome at Maintel.
As a company with communications solutions at its core, communication was paramount over the course of the day. It was an opportunity to broaden horizons and heighten awareness as to the functions across the Maintel business. Operations, Sales, IT, Software and Cloud Technology, HR, Recruitment, L&D, Finance, Marketing, all of which were touched upon during the numerous discussions that ensued with the future workforce of tomorrow. Some merely thought Maintel offered a career working with telephones, in which case they started to think it might not be for them…which is where it got interesting.
Throughout the aforementioned discussions, it was refreshing to see a number of pupils realise that there is a niche for everyone, no matter what sector or business you may ultimately end up working within. As individual pupils started to express their inner passion, it was possible to translate that into one of the many functions that we have within Maintel.
Some expressed an interest in teaching, which clearly links to L&D, some expressed an interest in Math, which could be linked to Finance, some expressed a passion for computers, which could be linked to IT or Software and ICON cloud services, and at least two individuals talked about working in radio, which has a link to Marketing. To some degree, until you are immersed in the big wide world of work, you don’t always see where your skills best fit, however, a Careers Fair is the perfect setting to discover different options and listen to the journeys that others have been on.
The day concluded with a series of mock interviews for Year 11 pupils, which provided a safe platform to experience an interview scenario with a real employer. At the end of the interviews, pupils were given the opportunity to ask further questions before departing, so the two-way dialogue was of real value. Bespoke feedback was then compiled by the interviewer and relayed to the pupil/interviewee, so they had something to build upon moving forward.
It was a highly successful day and it hopefully went some way to helping the youth of today realise that their pathway of choice doesn’t always have to be conventional. #wearemaintel #findyourniche