Talent Match London was a partnership of organisations testing innovative youth-led solutions to unemployment and sharing learning for social impact.
Through a distinctive ‘youth work’ approach to employability, Talent Match London aimed not only to get young people into jobs, but also to equip them with the skills, capabilities and desire to navigate a fulfilling career pathway. Talent Match London is focused on the long term, equipping young people with ‘tools’ for life.
Talent Match London was part of the Big Lottery Fund’s £100m, nationwide Talent Match programme which is focusing on twenty-one youth unemployment hotspots across the country through to 2019.
Rinova implemented Talent Match in London since its inception as a partner in the programmes chosen by London Youth – the organisation selected to lead Talent Match in London. Rinova also participated in a targeted follow-up with London Youth, Talent Match Croydon, to 2020.
Unlike almost all other employability programmes, Talent Match was designed by young people, in partnership with employers and the voluntary sector. Talent Match has a genuine focus on enabling young people who face the biggest barriers – such as through living with a disability or having caring responsibilities – to have more and better opportunities to get into sustainable jobs and careers. The programme invested in local partnerships, creating one-to-one support, outreach, skills development and employer engagement in the areas where they were most needed.
Richard Parkes of Rinova said “Talent Match was a brilliant initiative that comes at the challenges that young people face, in life and work, from a completely different direction to many of the government schemes that have struggled to perform. Instead, Talent Match has been genuinely informed and designed by young people themselves. As the Chief Executive of London Youth said at its launch, Talent Match is about ‘careers and not just jobs’. We learned a great deal from the experience, which lives on in the approach we take to many of our youth projects”.
Talent Match London was designed to provide not only the skills, but the confidence, resilience, networks, and the sustained backing that young people might need as they set out to navigate fulfilling career pathways.
As a 5-year, £10m programme in London, it had the scale and investment needed to try to identify solutions to long-term and complex challenges. Talent Match was as much about testing different approaches and, learning from what already works as inventing new solutions. You can read about its legacy results here.