This section contains details of organisations and websites that will help you to develop the skills that employers are looking for. Watch this film to remind yourself of what employers consider to be most important when recruiting a young person.


There is a lot of help available to support you in preparing for work and developing your skills. A good place to start is the National Careers Service. They can help you make decisions about work and learning. There is lots of useful information on the National Careers Service website, and if you are aged 19 or over, you can speak to a qualified careers adviser in person.  You can also get support from your local Jobcentre Plus.

English, maths and digital skills are highly valued by employers. If you want to improve these skills, visit GOV.UK for further information. You may also find the following websites helpful:

Improving your maths: 

Improving your English:

Improving your digital and computer skills:


There are many courses available online, for free, in all kinds of subjects.  One place to look for free online courses is FutureLearn.

You could apply for a traineeship. Traineeships are a government programme designed to prepare young people for work and improve their chances of getting a job or an apprenticeship. They last between six weeks and six months. A traineeship will give you work preparation training, English and maths support and a work experience placement. Find out about applying for a traineeship here, or contact your local college or training provider.

You could apply for an apprenticeship. Apprenticeships combine training and work – you earn while you learn the skills needed for your career. Apprenticeships are available in all sorts of trades, like construction, catering and health care. Find out more about apprenticeships here.

Volunteering has lots of benefits. It is a great way to get some work experience and to develop and practise new skills. It can also provide you with a reference when you apply for jobs – and give you things to talk about in a job interview. To find out more about volunteering, visit:


Working in a cafe does not involve lots of reading and writing but my staff do need to be able to write menus clearly and spell well.


Young people need to be numerate.  We don’t expect them to be able to solve complicated equations, but they do need to be able to undertake simple maths tasks such as addition and subtraction.  

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Learning and Work Institute (L&W) are asking for these details so we can understand the types of organisations and individuals who are accessing the What Employers Want resources. This information will be used for our own evaluation purposes. You will not be added to any marketing lists, but L&W may contact you to find out about your experience using these. Your details will be stored securely by L&W in line with the Data Protection Act 1998.