Employer Engagement

Donald Trump demonstrates why we need career professionals & a professional association

Donald Trump demonstrates why we need career professionals & a professional association

Wednesday 22nd February 2017

I've been in 'careers' for about 20 cough cough years. Long enough to remember the 'bad old days' before we had employer engagement on the scale we do now. We do seem to have moved from one extreme where almost all school career advice came from professional careers advisers, to the opposite, where many students get all their careers 'advice' from employers. Donald Trump gives us a clear example of why the latter is not a good idea.

This article demonstrates for me why it's imperative that we allow all students access to properly qualified careers professionals. Click on the headline to read the article and then come back to read what I have to say on the matter.

Anyone who has been in careers for more than 5 minutes knows that there is a huge variation in quality of 'advice' given by employers and employees that come into school to take part in employer engagement activities. Many are excellent, some, however are not. No matter how much effort and support you put into preparing the volunteer their input may be:-

  • Out of date
  • Have an ulterior motive e.g. recruiting a particular type of person to their talent pipeline
  • Boring
  • Biased
  • Irrelevant to the audiance
  • Presented in a way that the audience can't connect with
  • Directly contradict information given by teachers and/or other employers

The bottom line is that many students feel overwhelmed by the amount of information and can't process it without help. What do you think the Scouts listening to Donald Trump made of his address?

That is where careers professionals come in. Careers professionals, whatever they are called, be it careers adviser, coach, personal adviser or any one of similar names that seem to about these days, are people who are usually qualified to post graduate level and are overseen by the Career Development Institute. The CDI

The CDI holds the professional standards for careers practitioners and has a register of careers professionals who meet their strict standards of qualification and who agree to undertake a minimum number of days CPD per year and to uphold the code of ethics of the CDI.

The code of ethics is vital as it insists that all advice and support given to the young person, or older person for that matter, must be in the best interests of that person. Not the organisation that engages the professional, nor any other body. That is a minimum requirement of the current statutory guidance for careers work in schools.

The CDI register can be accessed here