‘Nestlé Needs YOUth’ initiative makes 6,000 youth employable | Page 2 | Daily News

‘Nestlé Needs YOUth’ initiative makes 6,000 youth employable

More than 6,000 young Sri Lankans have received support to build skills and enhance their employability through the ‘Nestlé Needs YOUth’ initiative. Nestlé, which has a long tradition of recruiting young people directly from universities, launched the programme in 2016 to help address the issue of youth unemployment.

Since the initiative’s launch, Nestlé has strengthened its focus on offering young people employment opportunities. Currently close to 35% of Nestlé’s workforce is under 30 and more than 60% are millennials. It is also facilitating dual education (i.e. combining on-the-job training with university-based learning), which is a key success factor in bridging the gap between school and the workplace.

Speaking on International Youth Day, Shivani Hegde, Nestlé Managing Director said: “Nestlé is committed to investing in the next generation of talented young people, to help them build skills and be better prepared to enter the professional world, so they improve their chances in a challenging job market.

It will be hard to thrive as a corporation, and help the communities we are part of to grow, unless we can hone the skills of young people who will drive the next wave of development.”

As a part of its ‘Nestlé Needs YOUth’ initiative, Nestlé has several programmes which have helped 6,000 youth become more employable over the last two years. It is facilitating dual education via internships, and a professional marketing programme taught by Nestlé Managers to students from the University of Kelaniya.

Nestlé’s Trainee Engineering Programme in its factory in Kurunegala also provides engineering graduates an all-round comprehensive training and work familiarisation, to give them solid work experience that will serve them well in their engineering careers. Good performers are offered employment within the company.

Through its NERI (Nestlé Education Responsibility Initiative) Programme, Nestlé also conducts work readiness sessions for university students on CV writing, facing interviews, career guidance, and tips to succeed at the workplace, through digital media, job fairs and workshops.

It’s WIN (Women in Nestlé) volunteer group, formed to support female employees, is now providing readiness-for-work workshops for both female and male students from rural universities, as well as differently abled young adults.

The company’s focus on developing youth extends to its own employees. Its comprehensive 18 months Management Trainee Programme, which has been successful for years, is a significant initiative in developing young people to be the company’s future leaders. Many of the company’s senior management, including its Managing Director, joined Nestlé as Management Trainees.

Nestlé’s ‘I-Tomorrow’s Leader Programme’ also offers young talent within the company accelerated training and development modeled after a mini MBA, with high performers offered assignments overseas to support them in paving long-term careers with Nestlé.

Enoca Sirimanne, Vice President - Human Resources at Nestlé says, “All of our youth employment activities are driven by our own employees on a voluntary basis, who takes the time to share their learnings and experiences and develop the next generation of leaders. Our people shape who we are as a company and I’m proud that making a difference and living our purpose starts with them.”


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