Bridgwater College purchased Careers Explorer in May 2014 to support their careers team during 1:1 interviews and has recently renewed the contract for another year. In the past year they had also decided to launch Careers Explorer to their A-level and vocational students. The College hosts Careers Explorer on their intranet. We talked with Fiona Henman, Admissions and Guidance Manager at the College, about their experience with using Careers Explorer.
In 2014, the College decided to purchase Careers Explorer as they didn’t have any labour market intelligence tool to help the careers team to support the students to get into the workplace.
The careers team introduces Careers Explorer to the students during their workshop for all A-level and vocational students to promote their services – everything from writing a CV to careers advice.
“We are happy with the system. We have even promoted it to a few other Further Education institutions through our NAMSS and UCAS connections,” says Fiona Henman, Admissions and Guidance Manager at the College.
“We find it very user friendly. It’s absolutely ideal in terms of value for money. Our students like to use Careers Explorer as a source of labour market intelligence. We tend to promote Careers Explorer more to our level three students and above, as we feel that this is the right stage for this type of careers advice. Our higher education students also welcome the possibility to use Careers Explorer,” she continues.
In their experience, it is important for students to attain at least GSCE to be able to get into employment. At that stage, the students can use Careers Explorer to get work experience. They can see in Careers Explorer what jobs are available, but also to compare it with labour market information to see what qualification level they should aim for in given occupation. This way, they are more motivated to get the right qualification for the future.
“We have also people coming to us with a career in mind and Careers Explorer is an easy way how to show them what sort of qualification they need and what salary they can expect in the future. For us it is a way to encourage the students to take a next step in their qualification, which helps them to be better prepared for the job market. The fact that they can see what jobs are available and prospective salaries motivates students to consider rather long term goals and stay in education. This proved also helpful to adults considering return into education. The future trends of labour market help them to choose the right qualification for them,” explained Fiona.
The careers team is now busy with preparing to welcome new students in September.
“The support we get from Active Informatics is excellent. At the moment all I can say, we are very happy with Careers Explorer,” added Fiona.
Bridgwater College is located in the heart of Somerset, with main centres in Bridgwater and Cannington. It also has outreach centres in Bridgwater (Angel Place), Lufton near Yeovil and Paignton.
The College has an excellent reputation both regionally and nationally as a highly successful provider of education and training.
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