Work Experience - Employer Guidance

As part of the national Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) agenda, The Highland Council, Schools, Colleges and DYW Regional Groups are working in partnership to develop and increase work-related learning opportunities for young people through employer engagement.

The DYW initiative gives work-related learning a high priority and looks to increase the work-related learning options on offer to all young people. Over the years our young people have had some amazing work experience opportunities thanks to the time, expertise and goodwill of our local employers. We wish to build on this model, therefore a new process has been developed to meet the needs of the DYW agenda and to address some of the feedback we have received from you. We are now asking young people to demonstrate their interest in your opportunity by completing an application form. This not only equips young people with a realistic taste for the world of work, but also allows you the opportunity to gauge the interest and suitability of each applicant and to consider how you can best support future career aspirations.

The new process is detailed below:

  1. You may be approached by Schools or your local DYW Regional Board to discuss if you would like to offer work experience or support work-related learning for young people in Highland. If you are able to support opportunities for young people you will be asked to agree to the terms of the data sharing disclaimer that will allow us to share your information with our partners and to promote your opportunities via this hi-hope website.
  2. We will create a job card with you which outlines the tasks that young people could be undertaking and we will relate this to some of the skills that they can develop by participating in the placement/opportunity. The job card will allow you to specify your preferences, available dates, detail positions available for work experience and/or any other work related learning activities. The latter may include visits to the workplace, talks about your sector, supporting mock interviews, work shadowing, careers fayre etc. These opportunities will be organised directly by the Link Teacher.
  3. The Local Authority has a duty of care to pupils, so if you are able to offer a work placement we will require an annual copy of your Employers Liability Insurance to keep our records up to date. The placement will initially be subject to a workplace assessment that relates to the tasks noted on the job card. Once you have been assessed renewal of this can sometimes be by phone call if there have been no changes. We will provide you with further information at the time of the initial assessment. For existing employers the Work Experience Administrator will contact you near the renewal date to refresh the Letter of Understanding. At this point we will ensure we have accurate information and will make any amendments that you require. We would also like to check that the process is working for you and to make adjustments where possible.
  4. Once the placement is signed off the details will go live on the hi-hope website. Pupils, teachers and supporters of young people will be able to access the work placements and work-related learning opportunities via the password protected tab. Pupils will consider the most appropriate placement to meet the needs of their learning and aspirations and will complete an online application form. There is no guarantee that you will receive applications from school pupils, however as DYW builds up momentum there will be more emphasis on work-related learning, so demand will increase.
  5. Once complete the pupil emails the application form to the link teacher for reviewing. A supporting statement can be added by the teacher before the form is sent directly to you for consideration. The Teacher will be your key contact to set up the placement.
  6. After you consider the application, you should contact the school to advise if and how you want to proceed. Schools may contact you directly if they don’t hear back within 10 days. If you are unable to offer the pupil a work placement you should inform the school why this is not possible, giving feedback as appropriate, otherwise an interview or informal chat can be arranged for the pupil to proceed with the placement. If the priorities of your business or previous demands mean you are unable to offer at this time, please contact us so that we can hide or amend your opportunities until you are in a position to consider work-related learning for young people again. Specific dates of availability can be noted on the job card and live site at any time.
  7. If the applicant wasn’t suitable it would be appreciated if you could provide some constructive feedback to the school and/or young person to ensure that they can incorporate this into a future learning plan, to help ensure success next time and to build resilience by off-setting disappointment.
  8. If the placement is agreed, arrange appropriate dates and discuss any relevant matters relating to the pupil's placement with the link teacher. The link teacher will inform you directly about any additional support needs of the pupil. Any matters requiring discussion during the work placement should be directed to the school.

If you are interested in finding out more, have any questions or requests contact the Work Experience Administrator - details below.

You are able to request to add, amend or remove your opportunities at any time, to suit the needs of your business. Just get in touch.
If you have any job vacancies or events aimed at young people these can be promoted free of charge on the hi-hope website by emailing
A handout version of this guidance is available below and also information about the induction process and checklist for school pupils.



Also consider...



Work Experience Administrator, The Highland Council, Glenurquhart Road, Inverness