Ellie Yell, Fledglink founder
Fledglink app launched to help bridge the education-to-employment gap for “Gen Z” and help tackle the diversity problem in recruitment.
Mobile app Fledglink has officially launched in the UK and hopes to ruffle feathers in the online professional networking space.
Whilst the market-leading platform LinkedIn is aimed at professionals with significant industry experience, Fledglink bridges the challenging gap between the final years of student’s education and the crucial period when they look to kickstart their early careers.
The platform offers a free-to-use dedicated social network for 16-24 year olds, focussed entirely on educational and professional support. Fledglink connects students and young people from diverse backgrounds, with employment opportunities offered by leading companies.
Fledglink incorporates industry-leading technology, personality insights, digital mentors and 360-feedback through the unique way in which the social network interacts on the platform. It supports anyone from the age of 16 on topics including careers advice, business acumen, employability skills, mental wellbeing and skills; as well as integrating a highly informative and tailored job-board dedicated to early careers (work experience, apprenticeships, internships and graduate roles).
Fledglink is founded by business Psychologist Ellie Yell who has a wealth of experience in supporting organisations and educational institutions around people development, assessment and talent management. Improving diversity continues to be ranked as the top challenge for businesses, according to the Institute of Student Employers’ members. Fledglink aims to help young people of all ages, especially those from disadvantaged and minority groups to develop their abilities, increase their self-awareness, confidence and unlock their inner strengths.
Commenting on why she founded the company, Ellie Yell said: "For most young people starting out in their careers with little or no work experience, there’s not a natural entry point to employment and many barriers stand in their way. Often the ‘real’ professional networks are reserved for the privileged; fortunate young people securing jobs and work experience because of family contacts.
"Fledglink is breaking down barriers to entry because it’s an equally accessible professional network of support for young people at the start of this overwhelming journey, and because we are holding companies to account around what they are doing to support diversity in recruitment and inclusion once they are hired".
Having launched the beta version of the app in December, it’s now being officially launched in January 2019, with full functionality, right across the UK. Fledglink currently has already engaged a wide range of bluechip brands on the app, posting their job vacancies; with more being added each week.
Helen Fuge, the former assistant director of careers at Southampton University and now head of talent at one of Fledglink’s customer organisations, comments: “Careers Advice has continued to be diluted across the education sector and therefore, there are very few touchpoints for students to identify their potential career paths. Fledglink bridges this gap! It’s innovate blend of creative technology and career opportunities provide students with the chance to identify their skills and research jobs through an app.
This use of technology ensures that the careers support is accessible to everyone and encourages students to engage socially with the aim of supporting each other to reach their potential. From an organisational perspective, it provides a quick and effective way of promoting opportunities and accessing a fantastic pool of talent”.
Chris Panting co-head of The Ashcombe School said, "The connection between psychometric testing and the opportunities is the most exciting aspect, and this offers opportunities for students whose CV’s may lag behind personal potential. I cannot praise it enough and am looking to establish it as a central part of our careers curriculum and guidance programme”.
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