Via: Go Skills Scotland - The Virtual Work Experience Project
Younger people tend not to be drawn towards passenger transport when they are choosing a career. In order to encourage younger people into the industry, GoSkills is working with partner organisations on the Virtual Work Experience project.
The internet-based 3-D simulation will allow young people to undertake interactive tasks in the passenger transport sector which are ordinarily not accessible to them.
Two of the main problems facing the passenger transport sector in general are its poor ‘oily rag’ image among younger people and the difficulty the industry has in raising awareness of the very positive careers that exist in the industry.
Consequently, a major aim of the innovative virtual work experience facility – alongside other initiatives – is to promote a more exciting image and attract the interest of younger people, who may then consider a career in the sector.
The virtual experience will be a supplement to – rather than a substitute for – actual work experience, which it is hoped potential candidates will undertake once they’ve been online.
The initiative will help the passenger transport industry in its bid to promote a more positive image and as a consequence will bring more people into the industry who otherwise would not have contemplated a career in this sector.
It may also help cut training and recruitment costs. A potential recruit can use this tool to get a better idea of what the job is like – saving time and expense for them and the operator in undertaking training that they may then decide to abandon mid-way through.
The website will evolve over time to take into account changes to the sector and new technology developments which will make it more eye-catching and realistic.
It is expected that further occupations will be added to the site as the sector develops and it is also hoped that the website will cover the rest of the UK in due course.
Mark Fisher, Chief Executive of the Sector Skills Development Agency, which funds and champions Skills for Business, the UK-wide network of Sector Skills Councils, supports the virtual work experience schemes being rolled out.
Says Fisher: “The virtual work experience product will ease young people into the world of work through a medium with which they are already familiar. It will complement the range of 'real life' work experience opportunities currently available to young people in Scotland."
The project forms part of a priority area for GoSkills – to encourage a greater number of younger people entering the sector.The age profile of the workforce is currently very high and the industry is looking for measures to be brought in to address this issue.