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Placer is an innovative platform set to diversify and increase the number of university students gaining work experience. Using the latest matchmaking technology, through employer dashboards and student screens, Placer connects employers offering quality opportunities with students. The mobile app allows students to swipe left or swipe right in search of their perfect work experience match.

Universities and Placer

Universities are signing up as trailblazers now. Contact David Barker for more info.

Students in trailblazer universities will be able to download the app and start swiping for work experience opportunities.

“Manchester Metropolitan University is committed to the success of our students. Access to high quality work experience has a key role to play and we welcome the introduction of Placer and the benefits it will bring to our students.”  Mark Diggle, Director of Careers

Employers can now sign up to Placer

Employers can now sign up to Placer and promote their work experience opportunities. 

"We recognise the many benefits to be gained through increasingly closer collaboration between employers and universities, particularly for students. Placer has the potential to break down barriers for students in accessing high-quality and impactful work experiences, while allowing employers to better meet and invest in their future workforce."  Kelwyn Looi, Special Projects, Pearson

“As we look to innovate in the area of work experience, Placer’s attractive, simple and effective mobile app will help us reach a broader set of universities and widen student participation across the UK."  
Stephanie Bishop,  Head of Graduate and Apprentice Recruitment, CAP Gemini

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What is Placer?

• A work experience app and platform, delivering new types of fresh work experiences
• Placer is flexible to enable, eg, taster days, shadowing, short projects – a day or a week, on top of current, structured, longer placements
• Students load profiles in a fresh mobile app to match with work experience opportunities 
• Employers publish work experience opportunities once to reach multiple universities and students
• Universities can co-brand and promote the app as their own
• The employer dashboard and student screens bring the right people together
• Can integrate with employer recruitment workflows, or allow direct contact
• Skills badges provide credits for key soft skills earned through work experience

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 Why Placer?

• Nationally, employers need students with the right skills – hard and soft – as well as the right attitude
• Students need work experience: research shows undergraduates with work experience are more likely to be employed, have increased confidence, attain better classifications of degree, and get a better job faster

Work experience challenges include:
Low take-up
Unrecognised value
Diversity gap (Bridge Group Report on Graduate Outcomes and Social Mobility, 2015)
• Only 3,165 work experience opportunities across 21 leading brokerage platforms for 2.3 million students in the UK (National Centre landscape research, November 2016)

Why is Placer different?

• Prototyped with universities, it is owned and driven by them
• Simple to use app and user experience driving student engagement
• Blind screening to help level the diversity playing field
• A ‘Platform as a Service’, integrated with university systems
• Not just an app, but a campaign
• Innovation in work experience: varying lengths – a day, a week, a month, a year

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What people are saying?

• 94% of students said they would use the app; “smart and appealing … straightforward and easy to sign up … clean and clear – very accessible”
• Five universities have integrated with our prototype; Placer is a key tool in graduate employability – a central tenet of the HE agenda
• Valued by employers – developed also in consultation with businesses, Placer can simplify processes and potentially recruit from non-traditional demographics

Who is behind Placer?

Placer is a partnership of the National Centre for Universities and Business; a leading provider of tech services to the HE sector, Jisc; and student accommodation leader, Unite Students.

For more information about work experience click here.

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