Material Extension of Agreement with the CSC Academy in India

Chris Jeffries

Founder

Dev Clever’s,wholly-owned Indian subsidiary and Veative Labs Pvt Ltd (“Veative”) have agreed a material extension to their partnership with the CSC Academy in India (“CSC Academy”). 

This follows the pilot announced on 29 June 2021, when the Company stated that its immersive learning and careers platform would go live in 25 of the c. 5,930 CSC academy centres and it would assess the foundation programme of STEM-based immersive learning and careers guidance. Following the successful completion of this pilot, the CSC Academy and Dev Clever have agreed a foundation programme for phase two – with Dev Clever’s proprietary immersive career guidance and learning platform to be rolled out to all CSC academy centres across India. As a result, in phase two the foundation programme will be offered to 2.6 million students and will begin to be rolled out in Q1 2022. During this phase, Dev Clever will receive a one-off on-boarding fee and an annual SaaS-based subscription fee for each student, to be paid directly by the CSC Academy on behalf of the student.

In addition to the foundation programme, students will be given the opportunity to upgrade the service to a premium subscription and access additional learning content as well as live one-to-one career counselling sessions, delivered virtually through the launchmycareer.com platform. Dev Clever has agreed to work with the CSC Academy to offer students a Launchmycareer (“LMC”) Careers counsellor training programme that will provide a recognised qualification and, in anticipation of the demand for this premium subscription service, Dev Clever has already started onboarding career consultants. 

It is the express intention that, subject to success during phase two, there will be a further opportunity to formalise the expansion of launchmycareer.com beyond the CSC academies to the broader 350,000 CSC centres and its tens of millions of users.

Chris Jefferies, CEO Dev Clever, said:

“The Indian Government’s recognition of the importance of career development for its young people is a pivotal moment in its intention to bring positive and lasting educational change to its citizens, and particularly its youth. Our now broader remit is yet another endorsement of our ability to support India with the technological knowhow in bringing about this change. It also has extremely positive implications for Dev Clever with the fees generated during phase two expected to bring material revenues into the Company. 

“We are also extremely excited to be working with the CSC and to be able to jointly offer an initial 2.6 million students the opportunity of a recognised qualification in careers counselling that will provide employment for those students seeking a job in this area and also enable them to guide other students towards a career aligned with their ambitions.”

DevClever Launch The National Careers Challenge across the UK

Chris Jeffries

Founder

In a bid to bridge the global skills gap and enable the youth of today to develop the career skills that employers are asking for, The Inspirational Learning Group (TILG), are pleased to announce the launch of The National Enterprise Challenge under a brand-new name for 2021/22, which will now be known as The National Careers Challenge.

This change comes at a crucial time and for very exciting reasons: as the world begins to recover from the pandemic, The Inspirational Learning Group have huge plans to expand the reach of their in-school challenges with the help of new owners, Dev Clever – tech innovation specialists and owners of the career search and discovery platform, Launch Your Career (LYC).

Following the acquisition over summer, The Inspirational Learning Group hosted a launch event in early October 2022, welcoming guests to Thorpe Park to discover the new vision for The National Careers Challenge, and to test out some of the Virtual Reality experiences being developed for the future.

The collaboration between Dev Clever’s ‘Launch Your Career’ platform and The Inspirational Learning Group has resulted in the launch of The National Careers Challenge, which will deliver both virtual and physical interactions for young people in the near future.

The event saw new CEO, founder of Dev Clever and LYC, Chris Jeffries, take to the stage. He presented his dream “to build a world where young people can be inspired by possibilities, by changing the way we train and prepare young people for the world of work,” and that “The National Careers Challenge is an extension of two great companies coming together to engage young people and get them excited about their future.”

The National Careers Challenge is designed to fit into a school drop-down day, to introduce and develop crucial employer interaction that exercises and builds key employability skills in an exciting and engaging environment. Schools can choose from a number of challenges designed for year groups 7-10, all of which result in the winning teams from schools across the UK competing in our live final at the ICC in Birmingham in July 2022.

Ben Dyer, co-founder of The Inspirational Learning Group shared “to date, out flagship challenge – now known as The National Careers Challenge – has facilitated over 350,000 students to develop key employability skills such as teamwork, communication and leadership; the feedback from schools shows that students feel more confident using skills such as communication, presenting, and more. This year we pledge to build the skills of 50,000 more students.”

This year, following unprecedented interest from our corporate partners, our programme offers: a Year 7 STEM challenge, (in partnership with Air Products UK); a Year 8 Theme Park challenge in conjunction with Thorpe Park; a Social Enterprise challenge working with NatWest; and, to celebrate our 10-year anniversary, The Inspirational Learning Group are proud to set an Esports challenge for Year 10 students. All our challenges are mapped to the Gatbsy Benchmarks and support students to develop key skills required by employers in the workplace.

The challenges culminate in a LIVE, national final celebratory event at the ICC in Birmingham in July 2022, where we will see the winning teams from all participating schools battle it out in front of our judges for the top spot and to be crowned The National Careers Challenge winners for 2022. The event will also provide live interactions with real employers, as well as chances to WIN great prizes for both schools and students. Our finals have been supported, endorsed, and hosted by ambassadors such as Theo Paphitis, Nick Jenkins, Diversity, and Lord Sugar in past years – so stay tuned for more announcements about this year’s event!

Schools across the country can take part in the National Career Challenge competition NOW, with the LIVE Finals at Birmingham’s ICC on 5th July 2022. For more information click here

DevClever announce a 5 year partnership with Veative and NISA to roll out its Platform in India

Chris Jeffries

Founder

Today, Dev Clever, experts in digital innovation and immersive careers guidance, announce a 5-Year Partnership with Veative and the National Independent Schools Alliance (NISA) to implement its careers discovery platform, Launch Your Career, across 70,000 schools in India.

The platform, which has seen career engagement rates soar in young learners across two continents, will deliver high-quality guidance in line with dedicated benchmarks to ensure standards are raised. Focusing on verified testing, profiling, and custom data, Dev Clever will replicate the success it has had in the UK and USA to raise the bar across all NISA affiliated schools that onboard to the platform.

Also, as part of the new agreement, the trio will further bridge the careers gap in India by integrating a world-first direct-to-consumer subscription service. The service will offer advanced functionality and invaluable careers development content at the click of a button, on the fly, and synced to every device. Accessible anywhere, anytime, anyhow; nurturing India’s youngest minds in their own homes.

Moreover, the service aligns with Launch Your Career and is the perfect opportunity for parents and schools alike to maximise the potential of India’s student base. Giving them the tools to discover a career outside the norm, link to employers and institutions, and use resources to make informed decisions. In essence, Dev Clever’s objective is to become the CEIAG platform-of-choice across India.

Launch Your Career: The platform-of-choice in India

Pleased to conclude Phase One of its entry into the Indian marketplace, the partnership has already prepared and is ready to kickstart Phase Two in January 2021. Phase One was all about evaluation. Phase Two will see NISA recommend LaunchYourCareer.com as the platform-of-choice to its 70,000 schools, which are attended by c.13 million students. It presents opportunity for widespread impact on learners and celebrates a significant milestone in the changing of India’s current careers offering.  

In recent years, the demand for better careers standards and advisers in India is unprecedented. In 2019, it was reported that 93% of schools across India lacked trained career specialists. Up to 53% of school leavers are ill-advised to find a job. Market saturation has left many youths out of work. The repercussions of this are dangerous for schools, learners, as well as India’s economy.

The new partnership will tackle India’s crisis’s head on in schools and the home. Once schools have onboarded and are familiar with the platform, there will be opportunity to upgrade its subscription license to gain best practice tools, Veative modules, and virtual learning content. The upgrades are engineered to enhance not only student potential but advisory efficiency; effectively, it’ll ensure schools can better align and guide learners from all potential avenues.

A New B2C Subscription Model for Careers Guidance: Giving Learners What They Want

The EdTech space worldwide has been significantly growing year-on-year. In light of Covid-19, India has witnessed an even larger boom. Its EdTech market is estimated to grow by up to 4x by 2025, reaching approx. $10bn, and it’s becoming a space to engage young paid subscribers.

In fact, India has become a nation of digital subscribers and Dev Clever are ready to transform the existing landscape with its landmark B2C subscription model to enhance careers guidance. The service, set to hit the Indian market from [April 2021], delivers outstanding functionality and access to careers content at home. It will also enable parents to supplement and monitor their child’s progress from any device. It’s a sleek and modern approach to careers guidance.

The expansive service will provide skills, guidance, and experience from all angles to maximize a learner’s potential and prepare them for college and career readiness. Students will benefit from virtual work experiences, careers networking, as well as college and course recommendations. Moreover, students can also undertake valuable modules to build aspects of their character and learning, incl. modules in interactive language learning, self-development and wellbeing, and curriculum-aligned educational units, all designed and brought to life by the award-winning Veative.

Success is in student statistics: Transforming lives

Dev Clever have rocketed careers engagement in learners within the UK. It recently collected feedback from schools it works with and is proud to highlight an impressive 147% growth in student participants feeling more engaged and informed after using the Launch Your Career platform.

By readjusting their focus and empowering students to make real life choices, educators could motivate learners in or outside the classroom. Feedback was overwhelmingly positive, with 94% of learners saying the platform was helpful to finding the right career. 89% of learners felt more informed about careers. While 96% of students said they loved the Launch Your Career platform.

Chris Jeffries, CEO Dev Clever, said:

“This is a significant milestone and material opportunity to support the career development of millions of young people in India. We are delighted to be working directly in partnership with NISA, the benchmark authority and voice of the expeditiously expanding budget private education sector in India, and Veative, the market-leading provider of online and immersive curriculum-aligned learning content. Together, we are able to deliver this solution at such a scale that it has a real possibility to change the way young people learn and become prepared for the world of work in their future.

 “The Indian EdTech sector is predicted to grow from *$2.8bn in 2020 to $10bn by 2025 and this partnership enables the company to enter an exciting geography at scale with a strong proposition, a direct route to market and the opportunity to secure a sizable part of this rapidly growing sector.”

Kulbhushan Sharma, President at NISA, commented:

“NISA is committed to bringing about the best learning and growth opportunities for all students within our purview, and this commitment does not end at the gates of a school. Working with Dev Clever and Veative to drive career readiness and open up further long-term opportunities brings an added dimension to all that we do. We are delighted to explore new career aspirations with our students through the Launch Your Career platform, and then excite those minds with the cutting-edge learning technology developed by Veative. Much more than a simple solution, this new way of connecting students with learning will bring a significantly positive impact to budget private schools in India.

Ankur Aggarwal, CEO at Veative Labs, added:

“We are both excited and humbled to be working with Dev Clever, a market leader in career development, and NISA, a massively influential body working hard to affect real, lasting change in the lives of Indian youths. Our contribution to this endeavor is to add a unique immersive learning element to enable a true understanding of what some career choices entail, plus some real learning in that area of interest.

In these trying times, the ability for educators to pivot with the changing needs of both in-person and remote learners is paramount. Such a disruptive environment creates both challenges and opportunities for EdTech companies to rise to the occasion. Delivering online education at scale at significantly lower costs, coupled with increased internet and smartphone penetration and a large untapped consumer base, makes this a truly wonderful time to be involved in education in India.”

https://inc42.com/datalab/the-future-of-education-indian-startups-chase-10-bn-edtech-market/

Careers After Covid: Tackling the Future Career Fear in Secondary School Students

Chris Jeffries

Founder

Over the past fifteen months we have all experienced the devastating impact of COVID-19 across the UK, and indeed the World.

Every part of society has been impacted requiring us all to adjust to lockdown, furlough, redundancy, working from home and being together in small social groups like never before. Positively, families have formed new bonds and recognised that adversity can bring opportunity and new ways of working.

One group that has been impacted more than any other is young people. Lord Iain McNicol, Chair of their Business Advisory and Intelligence Group, commissioned this research on ‘Careers After Covid’ supported by DevClever to help promote understanding of the critical need for careers guidance and personalised career-led learning.

You can read the full report here.

DevClever’s Acquisition of Veative Labs

Chris Jeffries

Founder

Dev Clever is delighted to announce a key breakthrough towards transforming the career and learning landscape for schools and learners worldwide. The experts in careers innovation have signed a Head of Terms agreement with Veative Labs, a leader in VR STEM learning experiences, for future consolidation. The proposal will see Dev Clever acquire Veative Labs and its assets to greatly enhance the introduction of a transformational programme of career-focused learning, to be offered to the global schools market.

Combining Solid Frameworks in Careers and Learning 

This acquisition will capitalise on bringing two robust frameworks together: Dev Clever’s Launch Your Career, a platform built on personalised careers discovery, and Veative Labs’ STEM learning modules. This powerful combination will enable school leaders and career advisors across the world the mobility to enrich, support and shape the success of their learners as they prepare to enter the world of work.

The purpose of this is to help learners find careers that they are best suited to and begin on a learning path to that goal. However, to get there, they will need to know what that entails. Therefore, each student will be empowered to understand their personality type. They will learn more about who they are. They will connect with their strengths, growth potential, and delve into learning motivators to see why certain careers and how certain learning may be a good fit. These learners will also come to understand more about LMI data, study pathways and the learning elements necessary to help them achieve their goals.

All of these components can be recorded and used to a learner’s advantage. For example, they might share learning achievements with institutions of higher learning and prospective employers, tilting the scale in their favour by demonstrably displaying their journey towards that career of choice. Moreover, in today’s challenging employment environment, it helps to give learners insight and an edge over their competition.

Taking Career Experiences to Another Level

The acquisition of Veative Labs will lead to profound advancements in the virtual and online career guidance space. Co-founded by Ankur Aggarwal in 2016, Veative Labs has been delivering AR/VR experiences in 25 countries and comes with the world’s largest library of curriculum-aligned, interactive STEM modules for education. In addition to this, they offer virtual tours, industrial training, and an English Language Learning series. Merging those enrichments with Launch Your Career will help Dev Clever create a global ecosystem for education.

Through this acquisition, Ankur Aggarwal will join Dev Clever’s board of directors, alongside its founder Chris Jeffries, to optimise the delivery of careers guidance worldwide. Aside from the innovative VR content Veative Labs brings to the table, their data-driven analytics platform is complemented by 3rd party content from creative partners in the immersive learning sector. Once aligned with Dev Clever’s advanced psychometric testing, Launch Your Career will become the go-to career platform for educators, globally.

Having maintained a successful partnership with Chris Jeffries and Dev Clever, Ankur Aggarwal has supported the development of Launch Your Career’s STEM-based experiences. This will help students discover their learning motivators in relation to their career aspirations and interests. Knowing what motivates them helps students make the right choices. Likewise, Veative Labs’ virtual tours are already proving to be a huge hit with both students and educators. With this technology, colleges are taking their open days to a whole new level. 

When the merger is signed, Dev Clever will begin to incorporate Veative Labs’ interactive content into its careers platform to create an accessible experience for schools, learners, and prospective employers.

Rocketing Engagement Around the World

Led by Chris Jeffries, Launch Your Career has been raising the standards for careers guidance, bringing remarkable career discoveries to learners. In the UK alone, feedback from participating schools has shown an impressive level of engagement. One school witnessed a 147% increase in learners feeling more confident, informed, and engaged in careers, guidance, and knowing what their next steps will be. In return, more students were making better choices for the future, making it easier for schools and advisors to support them.

Moreover, feedback on the Launch Your Career platform has been overwhelmingly positive, with 94% of learners saying the platform was helpful in finding the right career for them. Likewise, 89% of young people felt more career savvy and ready to take their next steps after undertaking the LaunchYourCareer VR experience. This led to increased numbers of learners reaching out to colleges and having more meaningful encounters with employers.

With the terms of the Veative Labs agreement coming to a close, the new joint venture will aim to enhance this careers experience to ensure more learners are ready for the world of work. This will empower educators with the right tools and resources to better prepare their learners.  

Emerging as a Global EdTech Leader 

Dev Clever has recently entered a partnership with NISA, India’s largest governing body for budget private educational institutions, in December 2020. The initiative saw Dev Clever’s Launch Your Career (LYC) platform delivering quality career guidance in line with dedicated benchmarks. 

In a statement, Chris Jeffries, Dev Clever CEO, commented “This is a significant milestone and material opportunity to support the career development of millions of young people in India. We are delighted to be working directly in partnership with NISA, the benchmark authority and voice of the expeditiously expanding budget private education sector in India, and Veative, the market-leading provider of online and immersive curriculum-aligned learning content. Together, we are able to deliver this solution at such a scale that it has a real possibility to change the way young people learn and become prepared for the world of work in their future.

The Indian EdTech sector is predicted to grow from $2.8B in 2020 to $10B by 2025 and this partnership enables the company to enter an exciting geography at scale with a strong proposition, a direct route to market and the opportunity to secure a sizable part of this rapidly growing sector.”

In addition to this, Veative Labs CEO, Ankur Aggarwal, stated “We are both excited and humbled to be working with Dev Clever, a market leader in career development, and NISA, a massively influential body working hard to affect real, lasting change in the lives of Indian youths. Our contribution to this endeavour is to add a unique immersive learning element to enable a true understanding of what some career choices entail, plus some real learning in that area of interest.”

The combination of Dev Clever’s acquisition of Veative Labs, and their strategic partnership with NISA, puts the business on a clear roadmap towards becoming a global EdTech leader.

Is Gamification Revolutionising Modern Business?

Chris Jeffries

Founder

Business Leader recently sat down with Chris Jeffries, the CEO and founder of Dev Clever, a national software company that is driving the gamification revolution in business throughout the UK. Jeffries talks about how the modern workplace is changing, the growth of VR, and how tech is helping plug the skills gap.

Can you give our readers an overview of DevClever?

Dev Clever is a software innovation business established in 2013 that helps enterprises respond to rapid changes in technology by bringing the latest digital solutions to industries worldwide. Over the last six years, we have been working in collaboration with brands, retailers, educators and employers, and we have invested over £1.5m in the development of a suite of innovative platforms which we believe are transformational to the current processes they disrupt within their market sectors.

In January 2019 we joined the London Stock Exchange, with a clear strategy to drive the future growth of the business globally through new and existing strategic commercial partnerships.

How has gamification changed the workplace?

Gamification has been used with varying degrees of success for business improvement and environmental change across a variety of sectors to improve productivity or motivate employees to complete tasks they might otherwise not prioritise.

Many big companies have embraced games to make their workers better trained especially as technology continues to modify traditional roles. Others have introduced gamification to keep workers focused on their jobs, or to improve products and services – Google and Microsoft, for example, created games designed to increase worker morale, quality control and productivity.

Virtual reality when used in work or school environment is also a great empowerment tool; we are currently rolling out a platform that engages a youth audience. Millennials have adopted technology in their lifetime whereby Generation Z will be the pioneers of this technology in the future. Dev Clever believes that in order to retain information, it is important to experience, and Virtual Reality presents scenarios that are not otherwise available to users.

What latest innovations have you introduced to the industry?

Launchpad is an intuitive platform designed to revolutionise the current careers advisory programme in schools and put the user in control. The young person is the focus of the platform, allowing them to discover careers that match their interests and personality. The platform guides them through the process of discovery resulting in aligning them with a career that is right for their personal characteristics. Launchpad presents vocational and apprenticeship study options to the user, and will also highlight specific courses in locations they can study in. The user doesn’t have to leave the platform, and can apply directly to the institutions that are highlighted as a match to them.

Currently, Dev Clever are rolling Launchpad out across the UK to schools. As an investment into the future of careers, we are offering this as a free platform to underpin the careers programmes currently available in schools. The real draw for schools at present is that Launchpad has been designed to adhere to the eight Gatsby Benchmarks (there is a government requirement for all schools to focus towards attaining the eight benchmarks) and by implementing Launchpad into their careers curriculum they are already meeting the criteria.

We believe currently there is an engagement crisis surrounding the targeting and successful engagement of young people. With this in mind, we have created, via VR, the world’s first interactive virtual reality careers guidance robot VICTAR (Virtual Interactive Careers Training & Apprenticeship Robot). VICTAR is designed specifically to engage with school children and immerse them in impartial careers information as part of a school’s careers guidance programme.

VICTAR has been developed in parallel with Launchpad to engage the user and show them around the platform. VICTAR is used to narrate and guide the young person throught the personality quiz, give instructions and immerse them into Launchpad. The VR experience brings to life their animal personality, and offers more than careers guidance.

Developed in conjunction with key partners and utilising credible resources, such as government backed Labour Market Information (LMI), Launchpad and Victar take the young person through an immersive, guided virtual reality journey to discover their personality and interests. The user can then explore, through full 360-degree environments, the careers and training opportunities that suit them the most. Once they arrive at their chosen career, they can see statistics and information about the career such as how much they could earn, the predicted growth by region as well as video content of people in the role with insights into their work environments.

They can see the colleges, universities, apprenticeship providers and employers that offer the next step in their chosen career path. The personal dashboard allows the young person to keep up to date with information relating to their chosen career at the same time as allowing the school to keep a record of each individual pupil’s future choices, ensuring they remain focused on their career goal.

The step change platform is aimed at tackling the critical national issue of bridging the skills gap, which the government estimates will cost the UK taxpayer £90bn per year by 2024.

How are blue-chip companies adapting to gamification?

Gamification in business has existed for a number of years without gaining widespread adoption. However, with UK productivity having experienced a rapid drop, it is clear there is change required in the way we engage, learn, and embark upon our career paths. Recent technological development means there is more potential than ever before to create effective gamification situations using real-time analytics, VR, AR, cloud-services and social media platforms.

Essentially, humans perform better when they are enjoying themselves, so while sceptics might view gamification as the latest corporate buzzword, it does, in fact, have tangible business benefits— and the global gamification market is predicted to be worth $22.9bn by 2022. There are good opportunities for business leaders to tap into the fact that games are one of the most predominant and influential communications and entertainment mediums on the planet, and organisations can improve engagement with employees or students, and witness greater user satisfaction, as well as the improved outcome of initiatives.

How can it be improved?

Gamification has the potential to become a useful and integral part of the workplace, but it needs to be done right. It’s crucial that gamification is not being applied as a substitute to good management- leaders must ensure that there are still real work and real outcomes being seen as a result of gamification processes.

Before starting out on the gamification process, organisations need to ensure their goals using such tools are clear and a match with the company culture. Monitoring gamification results then allows leaders to see if desired outcomes are being met. Organisations must also ensure they are not ‘gaming’ workers so that employees feel their work is being enhanced but that they are not being exploited or manipulated in any way. Using money as a motivator is therefore a bad idea, since extrinsic rewards rarely work- making money would make the activity about simply that and not about the work involved.

In today’s world, where time and attention are becoming increasingly valuable, people are more likely to be attracted by activities that are fulfilling and rewarding, and with which they feel they are gleaning opportunities to learn and grow, making gamification more important than ever if implemented for the right reasons and leveraged effectively.

Can it help plug the skills gap?

VICTAR is being used to create a more immersive careers guidance experience for students, and they are able to select a career path that is best suited to them based on their personality and interests. The gamification of this tool means that students are engaged, empowered and are able to experience a journey of discovery. This means that they  tend to select choices with more honesty resulting in a high level of completion of the assessment and a more accurate picture of their career options that is personal to them.

Getting students into the right career from the outset is crucial, not only for their personal successes, but also for the economy. Research from the LGA has shown that 12 million people could be caught in a skills gap by 2024, precipitated by high numbers of low-skilled workers present the job market in an environment where there are millions of high-skilled jobs available, without people to do them. This skills crisis could result in £90bn of economic growth being lost.

It is clear, then, that there is a need for improved career instruction, and leveraging technology to bring more structure to the career-choice process is a good step in the right direction. Gamification processes that create a more immersive guide to career choices means educators can better develop students and adequately prepare the workers of the future.

Full article featured in Business Leader Here 

Top Business Tech: Spotlight on DevClever

Chris Jeffries

Founder

Revolutionising education with VR and intelligent platforms

In 2014, Dev Clever pioneered the first-ever fully-interactive prospectus, which offered a way for students to receive course information for further education.

Chris Jeffries, CEO & Founder of Dev Clever, said that the roll-out of CleverFLIPwas when the company “saw the opportunity to develop something really intuitive for a young person, to help them understand what aspirations they could have, rather than just looking at what courses are available.”

Instead of simply sending out a printed prospectus containing an overwhelming amount of information, Dev Clever’s interactive prospectus can be tailored specifically to suit the interests of the students and distributed through various social media channels, allowing educational institutions to increase their uptake in learners but, more importantly, place learners in the education stream that best suits them.

“For four and half years we’ve been developing in collaboration with colleges, employers, apprenticeship providers, schools and students, a revolutionary platform which helps young people who don’t necessarily know what they want to be in the future,” Jeffries says.

If a young person is considering working with cars, for instance, Dev Clever’s Launchpad can pinpoint particular courses of interest in the sector, providing information on career routes and course content.

Launchpad “helps [students] go on a journey of discovery which identifies what their personality type is and it highlights industries where their personality type flourishes.”

Linking prospective students and their interests, Dev Clever’s careers engine Launchpad can help them explore the areas in which they’d like to work. Whether they want to work in technology, travelling or the outdoors, the intelligent platform shows the young person the sectors relevant to their interests, aligning with their personality type, which is revealed through a series of questions.

VICTAR is a VR platform which helps young people find careers guidance / Credit: Dev Clever


Not content with stopping there, Dev Clever then integrated the LaunchPad careers engine into a virtual reality product called VICTAR (Virtual Interactive Careers Training and Apprenticeship Robot).

VICTAR breaks down the sometimes off-putting authority of traditional careers guidance by using virtual reality. Backed by credible governing bodies like the Career Development Institute and World Skills, Dev Clever are now embarking on a full-scale roll out in partnership with Lenovo, the largest supplier of IT educational equipment in the world.

When a young person puts the VR headset on they enter a space, in which VICTAR presents itself and begins the program. The user can then embark on a personality test.

“All of our personality types are matched to animals, a little bit like a star sign,” VICTAR says.

The questions eventually result in a personality type being determined. for instance, a Tawny owl carries the motto “I’ll analyse it to understand it”. VICTAR then aligns the strengths and weaknesses of that personality type to relevant sectors, like science, surveying or electronics.

Identifying one’s personality type and the sectors of best fit can only go so far, however. The true brilliance of VICTAR is that it doesn’t end there. It’s not unusual for young people to be mired in uncertainty when it comes to their future. They might have a sense of what they want, but the roadmap to achieving that is often uncertain. From finding the best location in which to study a chosen field to the precise course information, and application to interview, VICTAR, along with the LaunchPad careers engine, lays a track down for the young person to follow.

Dev Clever’s suite of platforms culminates in what is the world’s first virtual reality careers guidance experience. Melding this range of intelligent platforms, Dev Clever offers a unique, immersive experience which young people can utilise to ensure that they’re embarking on the right track to fulfil their aspirations.

Why we must Transform Careers Advice to fit the Future

Chris Jeffries

Founder

Dev Clever CEO Chris Jeffries says if the younger generation are to prepare themselves for the jobs of tomorrow, we must give them the tools to reach their goals

The argument that students must be helped to enter the correct career from the outset extends beyond personal success: 12 million people could be caught in a skills gap by 2024.

This would come as a result of millions of low-skilled workers entering a job market with numerous high-skilled jobs available and a lack of people qualified to fill them.

This skills crisis could result in £90bn of economic growth being lost, making it vital that we ensure students are entering the best possible careers in the first instance, and are aware of what skills will be required. For this, we need improved careers advice in schools.

For the vast majority, careers advice at present remains woefully inadequate. Most advice still provides little to no structure or guidance, but instead relies on students making decisions based on their own limited encounters of adult professions.

This is frequently supplemented by basic advice from a ‘career councillor’, limited careers tests, and snippets of advice from parental figures and/or teachers – none of which takes into account elements of a student’s personality or their skillsets.

In addition, careers advice at home is beset with further obstacles; over a third of parents are scared of providing the wrong advice to their child, with half worrying that their understanding of the current career environment may hinder their child’s future.

Moreover, relying on family figures to deliver careers guidance means socio-economic background continues to play a major role in impacting children’s careers; a recent report from the OECD international economics thinktank found that, by the age of seven, children are already facing limits on their future work aspirations.

Compounding the fraught issue of careers guidance, the rapid advancement of technology and the speed of change facilitated by this means that up to 85 percent of the jobs that today’s college students will have in 11 years haven’t yet been invented. This means that the skillsets required for different careers are changing rapidly, as is the job market itself.

While the Government plans to place more available resources into primary and secondary schools, giving them the means to reach the mandated criteria of achieving the GATSBY benchmarks by the end of 2020, more change is still required to improve careers advice in schools.

Today’s students have been raised surrounded by digital experiences in every area of life, from entertainment platforms like Netflix to social media such as Instagram, and music platforms like Spotify. Students – rightly – then expect better experiences of and uses of tech in all aspects of their education, so why should careers advice be exempt from this?

Gamification is everywhere too; from learning a language to brushing your teeth, gamification is known to help engage users more effectively. In 2018, for example, 85% of people said they’d spend more time on an app or software because of gamification elements.

Schools must take advantage of new technologies and bring gamification elements into careers advice, and utilise tech to create immersive careers guidance experiences for their students. It is more important than ever that parents and schools have the tools and technology to better guide and encourage children to make good decisions on next steps towards their futures.

Some success is already being seen, with a number of schools across the country now using VICTAR and Launchpad a fully immersive virtual reality experience that guides students of all ages through the career decision-making process.

Based on the Myers-Briggs indicators, it goes through different questions to understand the student’s personality traits and then matches those traits to an appropriate career choice.

From there, pupils can use Launchpad to access credible resources and learn more about the career matched to them. The platform helps them to understand salary bands, career progression and what course to take to get them into their chosen career – whether that’s an apprenticeship or a particular course at college.

Such an immersive experience also serves to remove pressures from the environment around the student, such as the fear of being incorrect in front of peers or the teacher. It permits students to be more honest about their personality and interests, thereby assisting the student in making a more accurate decision about their preferred career path.

It’s not only the students that benefit either; the data offered by Launchpad and technology solutions like it also help schools to better understand their students’ personalities and the popular career paths among them, meaning they can tailor education plans accordingly. Technology is transforming industries at speed, revolutionising the way we live our day-to-day lives.

Education is no exception, with innovation being seen through the development of recorded lessons, the introduction of laptops and tablets to schools, and the use of interactive whiteboards – but it’s time that careers advice itself embraced such innovation.

If the younger generation are to prepare themselves for the jobs of tomorrow, we must give them the tools to reach their goals.

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