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The Young People In-Company Innovation Programme

2 What was it all about ?

Funded by Walsall Council/ Working Neighbourhoods Fund and in partnership with Walsall College, the Young People In-Company Innovation Programme looked to help young people access unique work placement opportunities whilst supporting local businesses to innovate and grow. Young people spent approximately 8-10 weeks working with a company to present a range of fresh ideas and real solutions with the aim of improving efficiency, increasing sales, developing new markets and ultimately growing profits.

Young Person



Mentoring Local Company Team Each project was fully supported by an innovation mentor who would help the young people develop their ideas whilst meeting the specific needs of the companies involved.

Companies needed to be based in Walsall and be able to support a young person to develop their ideas.

Aged 17-24 years old the young person might have been unemployed, a graduate or student and resident in Walsall.


+ George Clarke-Smith

“I’m a 23 year old graduate and wanted an opportunity to prove that I have the skills and attitude to be a real asset to a local company”

+ J&J Engineering “We are an engineering company based in Walsall and we needed someone to help us develop new markets and product ideas”

Carolyn Chapman-Lees

“I saw real potential in George; he had the right attitude from the start. My role was to support George with innovation training and facilitate the relationship between him and J&J Engineering”.



New Ideas Fresh = Approaches INNOVATION


Product Design Process & System Design Research Website Evaluation Corporate Identity CRM & Database Development Promotional Strategy Review

... and that’s just to name a few!

As a result of this project J&J Engineering offered George full-time employment. Carol, George’s Mum said “George is really enjoying his new job, he’s always talking about it. It makes me so proud.”

George and the J&J Engineering team with mentor Carolyn and Andrew Rumble from Walsall Council

George and his Mum, Carol

4 We are...

Creative, motivated,inspired

pleted his innovation Richard Stanley com n Ltd. project with Bernstei d; he has got the “We are very impresse k and we’re delighted right attitude to wor vest in his future”. to take him on and in

“ The Idea behind the proje

ct is fantastic! ” – Mid lands Mars

Jenny, Guru, Callum, Darr en, Joshua, J and Nasra he ulie, Michelle lped Sally Ha res develop Kit range. “ T her DIY Curr he young m y en and wom been workin en that we’v g with have e been extrem hard workin ely eager an g – it’s great d to have their and feedbac points of vie k” said Sally. w

ndeep, Laura Lizzie, Hannah, Gagan, Iram, Ma High School and Aaya from Queen Mary’s develop a helped Walsall Black Sisters to em to adapt to business strategy to enable th the current economic climate.

IT students Alan, Alex, Brandon and Max conducted a website evaluation for Tyretraders and are looking foward to working on future projects with them. A number of young people have worked on research projects for The Crossing @ St. Paul’s . Mike Mannix and Michelle Mitchell said of the project, “It’s enabled us to get external expertise and helped us see where we can improve areas of our business. It’s also shown the young people the diversity of the business world.”

rry IT students Alex, Dan, Gerald, Ke bsite and and Mike developed a Beta we siness business directory for Walsall Bu Parks.

Harriet McD evitt-Smith d esigned a ne corporate lo w go for Steph en’s Roofing Directors Jo . anne and Da ve said,“ The Harriett has logo designed fo r us is fantas good to work tic! It’s with studen ts and give th the opportu em nity to use th eir skills in th world. She p e real ut a lot of ha rd work into project and the the outcome was brilliant ”.


Amy Wells directed and produced a video for the project and is considering setting up her own business. Amy said “The project gives a real opportunity to actually do something significant, not just for our local businesses but for young people within Walsall.”

Highgate Hayley Ashcroft worked with clip design Brewery developing a pump ld. Hayley for their new beer, Walsall Go e opportunity said “This project gave me th It made me to work with a real company. more push myself and now I’ve got ve”. confidence and am more posti

Sanya, Niluma, Hena, Fatima and Javairia from Queen Mary’s High School conducted research for Walsall Mind & Body Centre. Andrea Bradley, Managing Director stated, “This programme has been of tremendous value to our business and has real potential to develop the business skills of young people. It’s an empowering process with great results, we are happy to support this programme and hope it will continue.”

6 What people said... Young people and companies have had an extremely positive experience taking part in the Young People In-Company Innovation Programme. Here’s what some more of them had to say…

IIt’s an excellent project and it effectively engages young people in the community


Maureen Lewis - Walsall Black Sisters Collective

“ “

The two young people involved inT our database development project have been, at all times, professional, flexible and prepared to accommodate our requests. Davina Lytton-Age UK (Walsall)

It has encouraged us to provide more specific and structured information for our clients

Peter Mitchell - Breathing Space Walsall

This is atwo truly greatpeople project, involved something that project a lot more The young in our havepeople been, at all should get involved in. I hope you continue providing this great experience. Thank you Shiv Parekh - Queen Mary’s Grammar School

This two project has made realise in myour potential The young peopleme involved project and havecapabilities been, at alland I enoyed every minute of it. Thank you for giving me the chance to take part. All the experience and skills gained will stay with me for a very long time. Harriet McDevitt-Smith - Walsall College


The students have helped us to recognise the value of innovative social media solutions, which keep our costs down and sustain our connection with the community. Their presentation to our Board was very well received and their recommendations are now being implemented. Jan Davies - Brownhills Community Association

Want to see it continue? The funding for this project has now finished however there maybe similar projects available in the future

As a young person is this suitable for you? - Are you highly motivated? - Are you creative and full of ideas? - Do you want to develop your employability and communication skills? - Do you want to work on real projects with real companies?

As a business is this suitable for you? - Are you looking for fresh ideas and new approaches to help improve your business? - Would you like to improve your business efficiency, increase sales and ultimately grow profits? - Are you able to support a young person to work in your business?

Can you invest in a project like this? - Do you like what you have seen and heard from companies and young people? - Are you looking to invest in a project that offers real social and economic benefits? - Does your company want to engage in activities which can demonstrate genuine local impact?

If you would like more information about involvement in future projects like this please contact: Walsall College Business Development Team Telephone: 01922 688859/98 Email: OR The Think Walsall Business Support Team Telephone: 01922 653620 Email:


Success! Over the last 18 months this project has : supported 70 local companies and over 200 young people saved significant amounts of money for many of the companies involved developed vital employability skills such as creative thinking, postive attitude and confidence

Thank you to... The Think Walsall Team at

Walsall Council

llege who have ies The staff at WalsallpCo ple and compan o e g n u yo d rte o p p su on this project

The Innovati

on Team at

Black Country Chambers of Commerce & Industry


ites In W n u rt o p p O g Winnin

Designed by


All of the comp have been inv anies and young people who olved in the pro ject

The Best of Walsall

Trade Walsall

Walsall Colle

Walsall Educa

tion Business P


Profile for Scott Wright

Young People In-Company Innovation Programme  

A project funded by Walsall Council in partnership with Walsall College that offered young people a unique opportunity to help local compani...

Young People In-Company Innovation Programme  

A project funded by Walsall Council in partnership with Walsall College that offered young people a unique opportunity to help local compani...


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