Employment mentoring for young adults


Mentoring Circles is a Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) initiative committed to making sure that young people have the opportunity to make the most of their talents and develop skills.

DWP are seeking employers to conduct group sessions and to also host events in the workplace.

The aim of Mentoring Circles is to give young people:

-  an awareness of how employers recruit, including information about their  selection criterion - delivered by a senior representative;
-  practical help with application forms / CVs / competencies;
-  the chance to practise interview skills, receiving constructive feedback and tips from the employer organisations;
-  an opportunity to visit employer premises, gaining insight into the working practices of the organisation.

There are three structured sessions, lasting about 2-3 hours each week, over a 3-week period (mentees are required to attend all three events).  DWP would be looking for a maximum of three young people to be mentored at the same time in the circle.


What’s in it for you as the employer?
-  Opportunity to meet talented jobseekers who you would otherwise not come across and be able to build your understanding of the challenges and barriers they face to move into employment.
-  Gather insight into your own company profile and your attraction and recruitment process
-  Supports your Corporate Social Responsibility strategy 
-  An opportunity for you to work with your local communities and to support them to move into work
-  Spot talent and offer up opportunities where available
-  An opportunity to diversify your employees 
-  An opportunity to recruit diverse talent 
-  An opportunity for you to develop your mentoring skills 
-  Challenge unconscious bias 
-  Be able to influence your organisations’ attraction and recruitment 


What did employers say about the mentoring circle?

Network Rail – “It was an absolute pleasure and if possible, you were going to send me the positive feedback from the young person giving me praise.  Really would like to keep that to inspire me to keep doing the right thing to make a difference”

Health Education England: Absolute pleasure. I got such a lot from it! 

SEO London Head of Recruitment – “Glad and genuinely humbled to have played a part”. The young people we had the fortune of mentoring have been pretty inspirational too! its an absolute honour/pleasure to be involved in such a great initiative.

National Grid – “We spent a few moments with mentoring - which will no doubt have a positive lifetime impact on the youngsters”. “It was a great privilege to be involved in such an initiative”

HSBC Head of D&I – “I could not be more proud to have individuals from our Embrace Network take the lead in bringing this to fruition and being fully part of its implementation. We have been proud to support the first of its kind mentoring circles in partnership with DWP”

Fujitsu Head of UK and I – “Mentoring Circles is an excellent initiative. Feedback from the mentees and mentors was very positive, if we help even one person get into work it will have been worth it”. 



More information about this programme is available from the government website.

To learn how to get involved locally contact anna-louise.hilton@dwp.gov.uk

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