Human beings are a social species. We reply on cooperation to survive. We are wired to connect...and it feels good to be part of team. To contribute to our community and serve our purpose.
Having a job opens up all of these opportunities for us. Being engaged in work allows us to meet new people and to be part of new projects that achieve something for the community. A job helps us pay for the necessities and boosts our self-esteem and confidence.
Before the pandemic, youth unemployment in Australia was already 12%, not yet having recovered from the GFC. In June 2020 this had rise to 15.6% - that's three times higher than the current labour market, which is at 5.4%.
I wasn't bothered to do anything. Lazy. And I wouldn't listen." - Ms Roberts
"I just don't know where to start. It's confusing and a little daunting." Ms Cruz
"They come in all enthusiastic but then quit when the workload gets busy." - St Albans cafe owner.
We hear from one side that there's not enough work.
Then hear from another side that there aren't enough people to fill the jobs.
Why the gap?
While training packages and industry organisations have defined certain skill sets for particular occupations, there has been a lack of a broader framework to identify and consistently measure and align skills which is why we've chosen to investigate ways in which the Australian Skills Classification can be used.
The youth need a pathway, a way to build their network and even just their own self awareness. while employers need skilled employees willing to work and learn.
From local governments to volunteeer organisations all areas of the community need to be
involved. They're our youth and our future.
Cue in "Level Up" - a mobile friendly website that brings all parties to the table speaking the same language when it comes to job skills.
Level up is not only a website that connects youth to training programs/courses and employers,
Level Up also utilises an AI virtual bot and visual location imagery to illustrate where certain types of jobs are in your local area.
We use a natural language chatbot to get to know the youth and their needs.
A user friendly way to help the user increase their self awareness along with identifying their skills and core competencies. A user gains a deeper understanding of their own preferences and skills by answering a few initial questions and Level Up uses all this info to provide the following connections.
1) With open data sets, and our matching algorithm we are able to then recommend a range of businesses in their area they can contact to find out about the job and internship or volunteer opportunities.
2) Open data from local councils is used to identify public spaces for mentors and youth to meet.
One certainty that the future brings is the uncertainty of what types of job roles there will be.
3) With a loss of certain jobs due to automation and technological advancement, other industries like health care, education and IT are on the rise.
Level Up illustrates to the user which skills are transferable opening up industries that the job seeker may not have previously thought they could apply for.
For example, the some of the skills they previously used in their hospitality role working at a bar, may be transferable to health care in the area of fitness and aged care ie. both roles require effective communication skills, customer service, empathy, identifying customer needs and an enthusiastic and approachable personality.Then any gaps in specific knowledge and qualifications required will be identified by Level up and training courses suggested.
Those involved in assisting the youth such as youth workers, parents etc can use an MVP of Level UP together with the youth they are mentoring to test its effectiveness.
4) Level Up will suggest courses, training programs, volunteer positions in the local community to help them level up to further opportunities. Level Up badges can be achieved as they complete a level.
4) In addition to using open data, Level Up will also collect data to feed back to local councils about the
interests and skills of the youth in their area helping to further inform future youth policies.
Reducing youth unemployment will only work if all areas work collaboratively together.
Level Up is our chance to obtain for the youth the dignity of having a job.
Further iterations of Level Up can be developed to ensure this resources is suitable for all ages and abilities.