Work Experience Programme

Opportunity for employers to offer meaningful work experience to those who are seeking work


The Work Experience Programme provides employers with the opportunity to offer meaningful work experience which can provide a valuable contribution to the development of people’s employability skills and career aspirations.

The Work Experience Programme is open to 18-65 year olds who are unemployed or in receipt of benefits. Employers who provide a person with a work experience placement may receive an incentive payment of £250.

Opportunity Guarantee
The Opportunity Guarantee strand of the Work Experience Programme is for young people aged 18-24. Employers may provide Opportunity Guarantee placements where they will be in a position to offer the young person an interview for a job or apprenticeship at the end of the placement.

Employers who provide an Opportunity Guarantee placement will receive an additional £250 incentive payment at the end of the placement. Opportunity Guarantee can also link with JobStart which can provide government funding for a six-month job opportunity.

Eligibility criteria:

Employers will be asked to sign an agreement setting out the terms and conditions of the programme.

For the Work Experience Programme, employers need to be willing to host a work experience participant for a period of two to eight weeks.

For Opportunity Guarantee, employers need to be willing to host a participant for a period of thirteen weeks, be in a recruitment position and willing to offer participants an interview for a job or apprenticeship.

Additional information:

Employers will not be asked to make any payments to participants on the programme - participants will retain their benefit entitlement during the period of work experience.

Benefits for employers include:

  • an opportunity to develop the supervisory and management skills of your workforce as staff can act as “buddies” or mentors
  • a valuable means of enhancing the public profile of your business and support your local community by contributing to economic development in your local area
  • a valuable contribution by your business to the development of people’s employability skills and career aspirations
  • an opportunity to provide a platform for people to gain an understanding of the structure and reality of working life by active participation in a work setting
  • an opportunity to access the local labour market and explore a pool of hidden talent - people who offer enthusiasm and a fresh perspective to your business
  • promotes workforce diversity
  • contributes to Construction Skills Register objectives
  • an opportunity to engage with someone on work experience on a trial basis before signing a contract of employment
Support organisation:
  • Department for Communities (DfC)
Employer Adviser in your local Jobs & Benefits office
Find out more:
Work Experience Programme
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