The dismal 'work experience' and how it circumvents labour legislation

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tashkent46
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An employer will give an 'employee' work experience, apparently so they can learn how to improve their skills in the work place. In reality this 'employee' is not allowed to do very much apart from the most mundane tasks which they will have experienced in a couple of hours. The UK job market has people who are unemployed sometimes doing up to eight hours of unpaid work experience a day, now you might say this is covered by welfare but when you factor in the relative pay of benefits to wages you notice a huge discrepancy between what they're claiming and the national minimum wage.

There are entire companies built on this slave labour. If there are jobs to be done they should be paid.

Sadly these employers often state the reasons for this is to improve the prospects of the employee when the reality is that they are free labour.
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sh4z
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hence the push for internships more than ever.
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username1799249
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(Original post by tashkent46)

There are entire companies built on this slave labour. If there are jobs to be done they should be paid.
Agreed. But it isn't just ruthless companies who are doing this. Much of the Media industry and politics back offices are manned by interns working for free. The result in the political world is that only people with wealthy parents who can subsidise their living costs in central London can afford to get involved in the civil service of power.
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Notoriety
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There are companies reliant on apprentice labour, but not many on work-experience labour.

The dole expects you to do 35 hours of job searching a week, which is far below NMW -- but this is permitted because you are not doing a "job". You are being given a lifeline to help you survive, but there are conditions attached. It is similar logic for work experience opportunities, but (afaik) they're not regularly mandatory. JC+ strongly suggests that people should do them, but you can back out if it is not right for you.
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So-Sarah
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and funnily enough, it was Labour that brought all this in , so much for 'helping ' the poor, lol
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squeakysquirrel
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(Original post by tashkent46)
An employer will give an 'employee' work experience, apparently so they can learn how to improve their skills in the work place. In reality this 'employee' is not allowed to do very much apart from the most mundane tasks which they will have experienced in a couple of hours. The UK job market has people who are unemployed sometimes doing up to eight hours of unpaid work experience a day, now you might say this is covered by welfare but when you factor in the relative pay of benefits to wages you notice a huge discrepancy between what they're claiming and the national minimum wage.

There are entire companies built on this slave labour. If there are jobs to be done they should be paid.

Sadly these employers often state the reasons for this is to improve the prospects of the employee when the reality is that they are free labour.
Yep and if you want something badly enough you will do the work experience and chalk it uo to getting where you want to be. Get over yourself - nothin in life if for free for most of us - you have to work for things unless you have been handed a silver spoon ....
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L i b
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I've taken on interns - and the idea that you gain "free labour" from them in most professional environments is nonsense. While they can certainly complete some tasks, it takes up more of your time explaining things and providing them with things to do than you will save.

If you're long term unemployed in the current climate, there's clearly a need for work-based skills and development. I think people certainly do gain from work experience and internships (although you'd be daft to undertake it for more than a few months) and would be concerned if we tried to restrict that.
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tashkent46
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(Original post by L i b)
I've taken on interns - and the idea that you gain "free labour" from them in most professional environments is nonsense. While they can certainly complete some tasks, it takes up more of your time explaining things and providing them with things to do than you will save.

If you're long term unemployed in the current climate, there's clearly a need for work-based skills and development. I think people certainly do gain from work experience and internships (although you'd be daft to undertake it for more than a few months) and would be concerned if we tried to restrict that.
There isn't a single job in the world where you don't initially need to explain things to employees... I'm not against trial weeks for very competitive industries but for a supermarket to refuse to pay minimum wage?
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tashkent46
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(Original post by squeakysquirrel)
Yep and if you want something badly enough you will do the work experience and chalk it uo to getting where you want to be. Get over yourself - nothin in life if for free for most of us - you have to work for things unless you have been handed a silver spoon ....
Except as above the attitude of employers towards work experience isn't very good, they seldom consider it real experience at all!
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tashkent46
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(Original post by Notorious_B.I.G.)
There are companies reliant on apprentice labour, but not many on work-experience labour.

The dole expects you to do 35 hours of job searching a week, which is far below NMW -- but this is permitted because you are not doing a "job". You are being given a lifeline to help you survive, but there are conditions attached. It is similar logic for work experience opportunities, but (afaik) they're not regularly mandatory. JC+ strongly suggests that people should do them, but you can back out if it is not right for you.
Word salad. Everyone who does a job is being given a lifeline. Go quit yours and and see. The thing is, they are mandatory, and the workfare program of free labour is used by a large number of UK companies. True it doesn't depend on their labour to survive, but why should the tax payer pay for free labour for private companies who can afford to hire someone who is unemployed?
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Kenneth56
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I they are circumventing labour legislation why not get rid of the legislation?

Also, paying people for not working sounds nuts to me.
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uberteknik
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(Original post by Kenneth56)
I they are circumventing labour legislation why not get rid of the legislation?

Also, paying people for not working sounds nuts to me.
This was the subject of the Money Box Live programme broadcast on Radio 4 yesterday. It seems that up to 40% of apprentice schemes are pretty much worthless and a way of companies meeting current legislation but not the spirit of intent. i.e. they are using it to subsidise their own internal staff training costs across the board.

Not just the small companies either. Apparently apprenticeships are being offered for shelf stacking or cleaning from big organisations.

Another way of getting the public to subsidise companies profits along with raiding pensions to play on the stock market, tax inversion, internships, risk transfer to the state etc.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09pjgmd
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Kenneth56
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(Original post by uberteknik)
This was the subject of the Money Box Live programme broadcast on Radio 4 yesterday. It seems that up to 40% of apprentice schemes are pretty much worthless and a way of companies meeting current legislation but not the spirit of intent. i.e. they are using it to subsidise their own internal staff training costs across the board.

Not just the small companies either. Apparently apprenticeships are being offered for shelf stacking or cleaning from big organisations.

Another way of getting the public to subsidise companies profits along with raiding pensions to play on the stock market, tax inversion, internships, risk transfer to the state etc.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09pjgmd
Ah, the BBC!

No doubt they stuffed this programme with people whose solution is to get more money out of the taxpayer.

The Big State is always the BBC's solution.
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L i b
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#14
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(Original post by tashkent46)
There isn't a single job in the world where you don't initially need to explain things to employees... I'm not against trial weeks for very competitive industries but for a supermarket to refuse to pay minimum wage?
I'm talking about internships, not unpaid work trials. I'd outlaw the latter.
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