As a result of the pandemic many businesses have taken the decision to permanently move to remote working.

While there may be benefits of working from home, it’s important that we cast a critical eye over remote working and the impact it’s having on the career progression of young people.

The pandemic has drastically reduced the number of apprenticeships, internships and work experience placements for young people this year. The companies that continued their placements were often forced to run them remotely, and while this does save money on commuting, remote work experience is very much reliant on the individual having a computer at home with stable internet access and appropriate software. The cost of utilities also falls on the individual where it would usually be paid by the company.

It’s not just a financial impact. Young people are often reliant on house shares in insecure accommodation, which is not always conducive to a good work environment.

The pandemic also affected how young people find and secure these work opportunities. Many work fairs were cancelled, meaning those who didn’t know where to look online for opportunities found it harder to secure a placement.

This often meant that young people with family contacts got the placements ahead of those without an established network.

All in all, the pandemic made it harder for disadvantaged young people to find, secure and succeed in work experience placements.

We want to level the playing field for young people in this new world, that’s why we launched remote work experience, where we connect the young person with the opportunity, provide the work space and the equipment.

This couldn’t have been possible without help from our funders and partners. Thank you so much to Trilogy for creating a community and providing office space for our trainees to work from.

Thank you to the Lady Fatemah Trust for donating laptops, and thank you to our employer partners including IBM and Helen New for creating the work experience placements.