We have a problem…can you be the solution?

From our research, we can see that young people find it difficult to present their problem-solving skills to employers. We will be creating a digital badge to help them improve their skills and be able to clearly present this on applications.

Edward Emond (he/him)
Head of Youth Engagement

Following on from our co-creation sessions in the UK and Denmark, we have spoken to more young people and employers to start honing in on how the digital badge will look and feel. As a result, we are delighted to announce that our badge will be focusing on developing problem-solving skills.

Solving the problem-solving problem

So why did we settle on problem-solving? It became clear during our co-creation sessions that young people were looking to strengthen skills that are listed in personal specifications, which are hard to give examples of without direct work experience.

One young person in Denmark told us: “I have been looking for work for a long time and have attended numerous interviews. I have begun to feel like my words have become clichés as I can’t always back them up with evidence. For example ‘I am very structured, or very independent in work situations’ sounds like empty words when I haven’t got any real experience yet…”

To meet this need, we began focusing on soft skills that are synonymous with personal specifications. The skill that young people and employers wanted to see developed the most was problem-solving. We are now working on developing the content for an e-learning module that young people will take to earn the badge.

What will the e-learning involve?

Young people are likely to have been developing these skills regularly during their life, however it is easy to overlook examples because everyday problems in life can be seen as second nature. The training will focus on drawing out these examples, exploring the processes they’ve used to achieve goals and how these can be improved.

The other factor to consider is that young people entering the workplace for the first time are unlikely to be up-to-speed with organisational procedures. Our training will focus on developing this understanding as well as exploring different problem-solving techniques that are used in the workplace.

Why we are looking for your help

One of the most consistent themes of the co-creation sessions was credibility. Both young people and corporates wanted to know why our badge is something to earn or value when going through a recruitment process. We strongly believe that badges can help young people communicate their skills, whilst simultaneously helping employers understand how young people have demonstrated these skills.

An organisation backing the badge is likely to act as an incentive to young people to earn the badge, whilst also immediately helping employers recognise that applicants with the badge have skills that stand-out. Ideally, we are looking for an organisation that has interests both in the UK and in Denmark.

What are the benefits to you?

Digital badges are still an emerging technology, by getting involved in this process; you would be ahead of the curve – gaining an insight into the process behind a badge creation. This can also help when it comes to recruiting young people, as you can be confident that any applicant with the badge will have gained excellent problem solving skills. Association with the badge will also help with brand recognition both in the UK and Denmark, whilst also giving you a positive story to talk to clients about your work with the community.

How you can help

We’re open to ideas as to how you and your organisation can get involved with this. This could be offering your problem-solving expertise to help strengthen our e-learning content, or equally you may want to rubber-stamp the content that we create. You may have your own ideas and we would love to talk things through with you. If you are interested do feel welcome to drop me an email to [email protected] and we can take things from there.


Published on 08-Feb-2016