McDonald’s chief tells company directors to hire more school leavers

“The boss of McDonald’s in the UK is urging more businesses to recruit school leavers and end decades of snobbery that favoured graduates.

Jill McDonald said it was time to drop hackneyed clichés that put all teenagers in hoodies and belittled their qualifications by calling them “dumbed down”. She said thousands of teenagers who joined the burger chain each year were bright and desperate to learn.

More than half the executive team at the US-owned business started in one of its 1,200 restaurants and 90% of restaurant managers joined as trainees.”

Read the article by Phillip Inman in full here

This article highlights the impact of the McDonald’s NVQ qualifications which are overseen by the schools regulator Ofsted. It appears that McDonalds currently has around 15 applicants for every one of their vacancies, which can be estimated at between 6,000 and 7,000 at any one period of time.

Jill McDonald said: “We now see the equivalent of six full classes gain adult certificates in maths and English every week and we’ve now awarded 3,000 Level 2 Apprenticeships in hospitality.”

She told the conference, also attended by the chancellor George Osborne and his shadow Ed Balls, that “we need to acknowledge the road many young people take today may not be the one we took in the past.

Our View

It can surely only be a good thing if young people have the opportunity to gain qualifications whilst earning money at a time where the Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures put youth unemployment as  1 in 5 and education opportunities are decreasing as a result of the introduction of increased university fees, etc. Although it’s a shame that these young people haven’t necessarily achieved the Maths & English qualifications they need at school, to have an employer who is prepared to invest time and money in your personal development can only increase your sense of worth.

The importance of developing ‘life skills’ such as communication, teamwork, time management, etc in the hospitality sector shouldn’t be underestimated either and can be hugely beneficial to these workers in future careers.

What’s your view?

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