“Thank you so much for this amazing programme it was really helpful and has driven me to further pursue and look into this industry as well as look at apprenticeship routes."
“I learnt a lot about the different aspects of marketing, my favourite module was social media marketing.”
“I enjoyed being creative through the activities in which I was able to discover and use Canva. I also enjoyed watching the webinars which allowed me to gain a deeper understanding about certain careers.”
Berkshire LEP CIM
Industry body
Work Experience
backgroundthe problemour solutionaudienceoutput

The Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) is at the heart of developing the marketing industry, driving change through thought leadership and certified personal and professional development. Berkshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) works to unite local businesses, education providers and public sector bodies with a shared goal of promoting growth and economic development within the region.

Hands typing on a laptop keyboard, notifications are popping up indicating lots of emails, messages, followers, and mentions
The problem

The vast majority of our programmes are built for a singular client with an aim to showcase that organisation and industry alongside bolstering students’ core abilities.

On this occasion, and while there was a huge overlap, both CIM and Berkshire LEP had their own criteria for success.

A combined brief was created with the aim of using marketing as the uniting theme through the programme while using the fact CIM is based in the region to demonstrate that students can have wonderfully fulfilling careers without having to leave the area.

The virtual work experience was only for local students, an interesting twist on virtual work experiences which is often championed for its ability to allow students to access programmes regardless of location. There was also a desire for a strong representation among female students.

Raise awareness of opportunities within Berkshire LEP
Demonstrate the roles and careers within marketing
Boost students’ core skills and confidence
Teenager using her laptop in her bedroom
Our solution

How could a virtual work experience programme cover three different topics while also remaining engaging and maintaining a coherent theme?

For our Content team, this created a challenge.

Through conversations with CIM and Berkshire LEP, it became clear that the programme had to promote the area and highlight career prospects within Berkshire, there had to be development of students’ key skills and there also had to be a strong focus on marketing.

The one thing that did not concern us was the desire for the programme to only be open to students within Berkshire, or for the majority to be female. Most programmes have some form of demographic demand and with a huge database of interested students, we can accommodate most requests. 

Given the cohort, we decided the experience should start with a module on working in Berkshire, to encourage students from the off.

The core of the programme then looked at marketing, with students learning about the role marketing plays in business, creating their own social media campaign and then gaining insight into the ever-increasing role of analytics to measure campaign performance.

Students would then finish with a module on employability skills, ensuring it would be a great benefit to all participants, regardless of their future career choices, while local businesses would benefit too from the upskilling of potential new recruits.

no. of students
age range
% free school meals
% minority ethnic students
% female students

All students were to be in Years 10 to 12 and at Berkshire schools or colleges.

Of the 876 enrolments on the first running of the programme, 78% were female, while white students accounted for 75% by ethnicity.

Male/female (%) - 22/78

Ethnicity (%) - White 75/BAME 22/ Prefer not to say 3%

Students rated the programme 8.5/10.

Post-programme, 46% said they had ‘excellent’ awareness of careers in marketing, which increased from only 3% at the start, and 87% were at least ‘likely’ to pursue a career in marketing – up from an initial 33%.

By completion, those ‘very confident’ of career prospects in general had jumped from 15% to 32%, and 92% were now at least ‘somewhat confident’.

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