Nestlé Jamaica continues to tackle youth unemployment


Employability skills lacking in the workforce
Hundreds of students from all university campuses across the Corporate Area flocked to the Alfred Sangster Auditorium at the University of Technology Jamaica campus for the second staging of the 'Nestlé Needs YOUth' event aimed at facilitating youth development in Jamaica.
Nestlé Needs YOUth is a three-year programme which lends support to young people in their transition from university to work. Through this programme, Nestlé is aiming to contribute to the reduction in the youth skills and employability gap, in addition to reinforcing young people's social integration into the workforce. The aim of this initiative is to identify and attract talent at an early stage, equipping them with the requisite employability skills training that they will need in the world of work.

According to David Heath, Nestlé Jamaica's human resources business partner, "The objective of this job fair is not to only to support Jamaica's youth in identifying the opportunities or pathways to achieve their career goals, but to also equip them with the necessary skills to perform with distinction in their chosen paths." He continued, "Nestlé recognises the importance of investing in Jamaica's youth and, for this reason, we will continue this tradition for years to come - supporting Jamaicans in their efforts to make Jamaica the place of choice to live, work and raise families, while achieving their own mark in the work place," he ended.
Country Manager for Nestlé Jamaica Daniel Caron echoed the sentiments of Heath in his address, stating, "There is a growing issue of companies not being able to secure good talent because, at the recruitment stage, the employability skills are not at expected levels. Poorly written résumés, poor interviews and insufficient communications skills contribute to a delay in the time it takes to hire. These are some of the factors that Nestlé wants to influence in order to reduce the levels of youth unemployment in Jamaica." He continued, "At Nestlé Jamaica, we want to develop young people by providing the necessary tools that they need to successfully transition into the labour force within a shorter period of time."

The well-attended event took the form of a career journey where students were engaged in activities related to preparing for the world of work. Students were given the opportunity to participate in live, on-the-spot interviews for the chance to intern, complete summer jobs and participate in monthly career coaching workshops with Nesté and other corporate partners as early as June.

Member of Parliament for South East St Ann Lisa Hanna was the keynote speaker at the event.
Nestlé is the world's largest food and beverage company. It is present in 189 countries around the world, and its 328,000 employees are committed to Nestlé's purpose of enhancing quality of life and contributing to a healthier future. Nestlé offers a wide portfolio of products and services for people and their pets throughout their lives. Its more than 2,000 brands range from global icons like Nescafé or Nespresso to local favourites like Ninho. Company performance is driven by its Nutrition, Health and Wellness strategy. Nestlé is based in the Swiss town of Vevey where it was founded more than 150 years ago. 

Kim Isava, regional sales manager (centre) for, shares lens with David Heath, human resources business partner (left), and Ockino Petrie, consumer marketing manager - beverage, at the Nestlé Needs YOUth initiative, held at the University of Technology campus recently. 
UTech Jamaica President Professor Stephen Vasciannie speaking to Patrice Pusey-Martin, category sales development specialist at Nestlé Jamaica. : A student filling out her registration form before heading off to do her self assessment in order to start her career journey. 
Keynote speaker at the Nestlé Needs YOUth opening ceremony, South Eastern St Ann Member of Parliament Lisa Hanna, engaging a UTech student, explaining to her the do's and don'ts in the workplace. A student filling out her registration form before heading off to do her self-assessment in order to start her career journey.