Fewer teenagers are applying for part-time jobs, new research finds

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6th December 2017 16:04 - Business Support

Fewer teenagers are applying for part-time jobs, new research finds

Fewer teenagers are applying for part-time jobs, new research finds: Over 140 local authorities recently gave details on the amount of child employment permits authorised in response to a Freedom of Information appeal.

By law employers must have a license to hire staff under the age of 16 and can receive a fine of up to £1,000 if they do not obtain a permit for a child employee.

In comparison to recent reports regarding Generation Z’s spending habits, latest figures show that the number of permits issued by local councils has declined by 2,722 from 2015 to 2016.

Further figures also show the number of permits issued by local councils in 2012 – 2016:

·       2012 – 29,498

·       2013 – 28,759

·       2014 – 27,503

·       2015 – 25,793

·       2016 – 23,071

Cross referenced with the Office of National Statistics’ child population figures, the BBC identified Norfolk as the county most likely to hire teenagers looking for work; with 1,376 permits issued by Norfolk County Council. That’s an average of 5.2% of all teens (13-15 year olds) currently employed in the UK.  

Although there is no exact reason why child employment has declined, theories point towards a change in consumer habits, such as fewer people want newspapers delivered to their door. Also, employers are seemingly less inclined to employ people who are new to their market and more inclined to employ staff with relevant work experience.

However, the demand for children to do well in exams is one that can make applying for part-time work off-putting, as children are consistently told that good grades will get them a good job. Additionally, recent changes to the GCSE grading scheme have also put more pressure on young people to do well, as the brightest of pupils can now be identified through the introduction of the grade 8 and grade 9 boundary.

Supporting the theory, Dr Angus Holford from the Institute for Social and Economic Research at the University of Essex, said: "Teens are being told evermore that you need to get good GCSEs and A-levels to get a good job in the long term.”

He adds: "Passing the exams you need now is looming larger in people's concerns."

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