A pre-apprenticeship programme with a social impact: Aon & Spiral partnership boosts young peoples skill's and aspirations

Spiral's partnership with Aon brought award winning apprenticeship opportunities to young people at risk of becoming NEET, and made a statistically significant impact on their skills, attitudes and aspirations.

The innovative pre-apprenticeship programme invited young people to develop skills, build confidence and raise their aspirations by sampling a week in the life of Aon. After introductions by current Aon apprentices, young people took part in workshops on consultancy, actuarial and insurance, culminating in a practice assessment centre. Using Spiral's 'workplace staging' technique, young people gained career insight and developed their transferable skills by undertaking real life challenges experienced in each Aon department. The programme also featured self-awareness and target setting workshops, and proved to be a truly developmental experience for the cohort involved. 

With special thanks to our recruitment partner Uptree, twenty eight, BAME, Year 13 students were engaged from inner city schools in an initiative to bring equal opportunities to London's young people. The cohort were encouraged to evaluate their own transferable skill sets and reflect on their personal goals and values over the course of the week. They also monitored the progression of their teamwork, leadership, communication, problem solving and resilience skills. Spiral in partnership with Aon also measured the development of the cohort's skills, attitudes and aspirations and we are excited to report that improvements were seen across all measures.

Here is a snapshot of impact results from the pre-apprenticeship programme with 28, year 13, BAME participants:

The number of young people answering positively (confident/very confident or agree/strongly agree) to the following statements rose by:

  • 'I'm confident being the leader of a team' by 28% to 84%
  • 'I feel positive about my future' by 20% to 96%
  • 'I like meeting new people' by 16% to 96%
  • There was a statistically significant effect on young people's self-esteem, aspirations and transferable skills
  • 84% of young people saw improvements in their transferable skills 

95% of young people said they were more likely to do an apprenticeship

The Aon pre-apprenticeship programme was designed in collaboration with our careers education social enterprise, Spiral Skills. Our partnership with careers platform Uptree, enabled us to reach twenty eight BAME young people interested in finance from inner London schools with the opportunity. In our mission to bring equal opportunities to young people most at risk of becoming #NEETs (Not in employment, education or training), we design and deliver high impact careers education programmes. Founded by ex-teachers and youth workers, our programmes are tailored to build transferable skills, develop emotional capabilities and raise aspirations in young people who face barriers to achieving employment. Barriers that can range from severely low self-esteem, learning disabilities, and behavioral difficulties or ESL (English as a foreign language) . Our interactive 'try before you buy' approach gives young people impartial careers insight whilst connecting them to a network of professional volunteers. We know this enables young people to make better informed life decisions, whilst equipping them with the tools and networks they need to achieve successful and fulfilling careers. 

Together, Aon and Spiral aim to boost social mobility and diversify the industry. The programme was initially piloted last year, and saw four out of seventeen young people go on to achieve apprenticeships at Aon. They returned this year to inspire the next generation into apprenticeship opportunities. For new cohorts to learn from apprentices just one year ahead of them, suited, booted and settled in their new careers; is an inspiring experience for young people.

Are you looking to engage young people into your apprenticeship opportunities and diversify your workforce? Spiral design and deliver pre-apprenticeship programmes with a social impact. Contact emma@spiralskills.co.uk for more information.