Positive Futures: a collaboration between DYW Moray and DYW North East
Positive Futures was a collaborative project between DYW Moray and DYW North East focused on communicating and engaging with employers and young people to accelerate the work of Developing the Young Workforce.
The year-long project set out to discover how employers and young people viewed youth employability in Moray and the North East and address the findings with a positive narrative, highlighting opportunities and support.
Understanding the environment
The first step was the Positive Futures research study, to clarify whether DYW Moray and DYW North East's perception of the issues and situation were accurate. It also provided a benchmark to allow us to understand the scale of the task of promoting a positive narrative. And so, in the Summer of 2021, two surveys were conducted to gauge the sentiment of young people and employers on the employment landscape in the region. From the two initial surveys in the Summer of 2021, the research team then carried out in-depth interviews to gain more insight into the data.
Creating a positive narrative
Over the following six months, a series of three campaigns addressed some of the key findings from the study. These were supported with a programme of proactive media coverage highlighting the 'Positive Future' message.
Employers were targeted with a six-month campaign encouraging them to sign up to the Young Person's Guarantee.
The benefits of gaining work experience were highlighted in a Foundation Apprenticeship campaign, both to inform young people and their influencers and to get employers to offer placements.
Mentoring was the third focus, detailing the support available in each region and the benefits of a mentoring relationship.
Leaving a legacy
Meanwhile, a library of resources was being created, making sure the project left a lasting legacy for the important work Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) does. These new assets were designed to fit the direction of industry and the employment landscape, with templates and processes in place for the teams going forward.
In summary, the Positive Futures project:
- Provided an accurate regional snapshot of the differing views of the youth employability landscape from young people and employers
- Dug deeper with research interviews to gain a better understanding of the barriers facing young people and employers
- Actively promoted career pathways and regional growth sectors
- Communicated with young people the way they communicate with each other
- Engaged with employers already on board to motivate other employers
- Created a bank of multimedia content to support ongoing Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) work
Overall, the Positive Futures project has given us a greater understanding of the barriers facing young people and employers, which can be incorporated into DYW strategy moving forward.
Click here to read the full Positive Futures project report