Professions Week, which aims to increase interest and awareness of the different professions available to young people, kicked off its week of activities at the House of Commons on Monday. Sofa Brands International was invited to represent the manufacturing industry in the launch event.
Emma Wharton, head of human resources at Sofa Brands International, says: “The work done by Professions Week to help raise awareness around professions is invaluable. One of the things that really stood out to me during the speech by Sarah Hathaway (Professions Week Chair) was that many of the roles that will be available to children currently in primary schools don’t currently exist. We need to recognise the speed of change in industry and commerce as well as the impact it has on professions.
“It was wonderful to be able to represent the manufacturing industry and to discuss how professions we often deem to be ‘non-manufacturing’ fit into our sector. I feel that employers could be doing much more to educate young people on how the different professions fit into different industries.
“People often associate manufacturing as being dirty, hard work, manual work and are often unaware of the range of professions that the industry actually offers – everything from sales, marketing and design to HR! There is a growing concern about the future of manufacturing and its ability to attract the younger generation. The evening highlighted to me the need for employers, schools and professional bodies to continue work together to educate and inspire young people.”
Running until 16th November, the week will aim to increase interest and awareness among 14 to 19 year olds in the different professions. It supports teachers and careers advisors, giving them the relevant materials to help young people make informed decisions with regards to their career options.