More than 100,000 young people have started jobs through the government’s Kickstart scheme since its launch last year.
According to the Department for Work and Pensions, an average of 3,400 people have started Kickstart jobs each week over the past month as organisations ramped up their hiring activity to fill vacancies.
The scheme, which offers employers subsidies for providing job placements for 16-24 year olds on universal credit, has recently been extended until March 2022 to give employers the chance to hire more young people.
Work and pensions secretary Thérèse Coffey marked the milestone by visiting a production facility for luxury car maker McLaren Automotive. The company has recently taken on its first cohort of Kickstart participants in roles such as colour and materials design, prototype build technicians and studio engineering assistants.
Coffey said: “Employers like McLaren Automotive are giving young people the chance to get on the jobs ladder.
“Having hit the 100,000 milestone, we are now on the last lap and I encourage employers and young people to take advantage of this opportunity as we head towards the finish line of the great Kickstart scheme.”
Kickstart employees at McLaren have also benefitted from employability support from The Prince’s Trust, which aims to help them build confidence and excel in their new roles.
Ruth Nic Aoidh, executive director of purchasing, commercial, government affairs and legal at McLaren, said: “We recognise the importance of getting more young people back into work and are delighted that McLaren Automotive has contributed to the significant 100,000 milestone.
“With the support of training provider The Prince’s Trust, we are able to boost young people’s employability skills while giving them in an insight into a range of exciting roles involved in creating and building our supercars.”
Other major employers that have taken advantage of the Kickstart scheme include Yorkshire Water, Pinewood Studios, The Royal Mint and JD Sports.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak said: “Our future success depends on our young people, which is why we introduced the Kickstart scheme to give them the skills, experience and opportunities they need to reach their full potential.
“I’ve seen first-hand how it has transformed people’s lives, so I am proud that 100,000 young people have started Kickstart jobs, with the scheme continuing to help young people into next year as we emerge from the pandemic.”
The government had originally set a target of creating 250,000 Kickstart jobs by the end of 2021.