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Kickstarting Careers for Young People

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a huge impact on employment levels across the country. A group which has been particularly affected by this is young people, many of whom have found themselves at risk of long-term unemployment.

This is where Kickstart comes in – a government funded scheme which aims to support 16–24-year-olds, who are currently claiming Universal Credit, to find their feet in the working world. Within MSPS, the scheme will see 29 new starters complete a six-month placement across a variety of occupations including Administration, Customer Service, Property Maintenance, Gardening and Hygiene Operative.

“Kickstart is a great opportunity for young people to gain on-the-job experience and increase their chances of long-term employment. Given the current competitive jobs market, the skills they develop on these placements will give them a fantastic advantage as they progress their future careers. We also hope to see some of these individuals continuing their employment with us at MSPS, forging out a career in the property services industry.” – Alan Hayward, Managing Director.

Below, Rahela Begum and Deane Uttley tell us about their experiences on the Kickstart scheme.

Rahela Begum
Trainee Office Administrator, Westminster

Rahela is 22 years old, from London. She recently graduated from university where she studied Geography, with a particular focus on cities, regeneration and housing – and was alerted to the opportunity with Kickstart via her work coach.

Why did the scheme appeal to you?
“This opportunity closely related to the field of work I’m interested in. Having reviewed the Morgan Sindall website, I could see that the company has been involved in many regeneration projects around the country and their core values aligned with mine. For instance, the social value commitment and environmental goals.”

Tell us about your role and what you’ve gained from it?
“I’ve been working in an administrative role. Through this role, I have improved my communication skills by talking to residents and staff within the organisation at all levels. The time that I have spent at Morgan Sindall has helped me to understand the processes behind providing an important service of repairs and maintenance to social housing residents.”

What are you enjoying most about your role?
“My team at the Goldney Road hub are amazing. They are always willing to help and share their knowledge with me. I also enjoy the variety of work which gives me the opportunity to utilise the skills I am currently gaining.”

Deane Uttley
Trainee Office Administrator, Leeds

Deane is 21 years old, from Belle Isle, Leeds. Deane came across the Kickstart scheme via her work coach at Eastgate Job Centre in Leeds, who put the job in her online journal. For her, it’s been a great opportunity to gain some key experience she had been looking for.

Why did the scheme appeal to you?
“Morgan Sindall Property Services in Leeds is only a 10-minute bus ride away from my home, or I can walk it in in less than 20 minutes. This really appealed to me, being able to work so close to where I live. I also wanted to get experience of working in an office, so it seemed like a great opportunity.“

Tell us about your role and what you’ve gained from it?
“I am working as an admin assistant on the LiLac contract. I’ve gained more confidence working with IT and have started taking inbound calls which is also helping me with my confidence. I have gained a range of skills including how to scan documents and save them in the correct folders, creating ID cards for all new starters, and logging repairs and sending them off for the engineers to respond to. I think the soft skills I have developed are confidence, patience, communication and working as part of a team.”

What are you enjoying most about your role?
“I love coming to work, I feel very supported and have a lovely team who I feel comfortable with. I know I can ask questions and they will support me in any way they can.”