This is the continuation of a blog I wrote on an idea to create a career development service for young adults that is housed in local schools/colleges. The full blog is at https://brookfieldgroup.wordpress.com/2014/06/01/how-100k-could-reduce-unemployment-increase-social-mobility-part-one/.

If we agree the idea might be a good one, we can start thinking about how best it can be done. I haven’t spent enough time working on it and don’t have enough data to be confident on the ‘how’, but here are a few thoughts I had on some of the key questions the idea faces:

  1. Do you open it up to the whole local community rather than just former students? I think probably yes, but brand it as for former students;
  2. Who pays for it? I think the Department for Work and Pensions;
  3. Could you do a social finance deal? Yes – if you can demonstrate a cost-saving against unemployment benefits and/or an increase in taxes paid against a control group;
  4. Would it be a headache for schools? Kinda. Sorry. But could actually contribute significant value;
  5. Could you make it optional for schools rather than forcing all schools to do it? You definitely could;
  6. Who should it be for? Probably 18 – 30 year olds but that’s a pretty arbitrary guess – someone with time/brains should figure this out based on data gathered;
  7. Should it just focus on unemployed people? No. There’s a huge swathe of people who need career support even though they aren’t unemployed;
  8. Should it be the same person who delivers career advice in school? Maybe, but I wouldn’t start there. I think we should build something that is fit for the demographic we’re looking at and not compromise on that;
  9. Should this replace the Job Centre Plus? It may lighten their load, but there are specific functions of the Job Centre Plus that should remain separate – this shouldn’t become part of the benefits process;
  10. How much will it cost? I think about £90m per year (based on one person staffing two schools/colleges and having some budget, an overhead to run it and some national marketing);
  11. Isn’t that a crazy amount of money? Not if it works;
  12. Could we just build a website with a helpline? Kill me now;
  13. What would you spend the £100k on? Some national polling, some qualitative research, desk research into the info that’s already out there, business planning, financial modelling and then advocacy around the idea. If you wanted to put in another £750k you could pilot it as well;
  14. So if I put £100k into this…? Yep, I think there’s a decent chance that your £100k could influence £1bn in government budget over the next 15 years, transform lives and make you a total legend.

If you want to read more, my third blog on this topic is about next steps, it’s at https://brookfieldgroup.wordpress.com/2014/06/01/how-100k-could-reduce-unemployment-increase-social-mobility-part-three/.

Jake Hayman is the Founder/CEO of The Social Investment Consultancy and Future First.

PS. I’m going to make changes/improvements to this as I get feedback.

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