Auckland businesses honoured for commitment to youthful talent

Published: 27 November 2015
Filed under: Awards, General news

Leading Auckland employers have been recognised for their commitment to employing and developing Auckland youth at the inaugural ‘Young at Heart’ Youth Employer Pledge Awards.

The awards, which were presented last night at Crowne Plaza Hotel in central Auckland, recognise the efforts of businesses that have signed Youth Employer Pledges, making the commitment to employ Auckland’s young talent to grow their future workforce and business.

Rainbow’s End was named as Auckland Youth Employer of the Year, with its youth friendly approach to recruitment, track record of employing young people and successful training and development programmes helping secure the top award.

Leanne Laloli, Team Development Manager at Rainbow’s End (pictured second from left with Mayor Len Brown, Nosheen Sahib of Rainbow’s End, and Sir Stephen Tindall) says her organisation is thrilled to be recognised for taking part in what she describes as “a great initiative.” 

“We are particularly proud of our training and development programmes which reinforce the value we place on the personal and professional growth of our young employees.

“We recognise that for the majority of youth we employ, working at Rainbow’s End will most likely be their first working experience and therefore it is necessary for us to spend time to develop workplace skills, knowledge and behaviours that will allow them to be successful in the workplace.”

The following businesses were honoured at the Young at Heart event:

  • Auckland Youth Employer of the Year - Rainbow’s End
  • JobFEST Exhibitor 2015 - The Just Group
  • Industry Leadership - Intercontinental Hotels Group
  • School Engagement and Work Experience - McDonalds Restaurants NZ
  • Youth In-Work Mentoring - Downer NZ
  • Maori and Pacifica Diversity - Aurecon
  • Local Youth Employer - The Warehouse
  • Youth Induction and Development - Xero
  • Youth Employment Programme Award  -  Domino’s Pizza New Zealand Ltd
  • Innovative Youth Employer – SKYCITY

The Youth Employer Pledge is delivered by Auckland Tourism, Events & Economic Development (ATEED) as part of the Auckland Council Youth Connections programme, and is generously supported by The Tindall Foundation. The pledge is a key initiative in Auckland’s Youth Employment Plan, which exists to get more of Auckland’s young talent into work and career pathways.

More than thirty Auckland businesses have joined the Youth Employer Pledge programme to date, pledging 365 youth employment opportunities. Six businesses have also received support to recruit an additional 173 youth for local roles.

An example of a successful initiative associated with the Youth Employment Pledge is the bi-annual JobFest youth employment events held across Auckland. The two 2015 JobFEST events held in Manukau and Albany delivered 270 jobs and gave approximately 1,000 young people a chance of employment.

Patrick McVeigh, ATEED’s General Manager Business, Innovation & Skills, says: “Auckland’s businesses are growing, and at the same time one in five young Aucklanders aren’t in employment, education or training.

“Getting Auckland’s youthful talent into entry-level roles with career prospects is important to help fuel this growth, and the businesses acknowledged at the Young at Heart awards are doing just that. We look forward to many more businesses signing up to the Youth Employer Pledge in 2016.”

Mayor Len Brown commends businesses that have made the commitment to youth by signing up to a pledge: “I am thrilled to see such great progress through Youth Employer Pledge partnerships, which have led to opportunities for young Aucklanders.”

“Congratulations to all the award winners, and to all the businesses that have shown their commitment to Auckland’s youthful talent.”

 You can watch a video of pledge partners speaking about the Youth Employer Pledge below:

The awards: 

Auckland Youth Employer of the Year (Rainbow's End):  Recognising the top pledge partner for 2015.

JobFEST Exhibitor 2015 (The Just Group): To be eligible for the JobFEST Exhibitor 2015 Award, pledge partners need to have participated in at least one JobFEST, and have an ongoing commitment to attending further JobFEST events.  Their JobFEST presence and follow up is characterised by a high quality of engagement with young people, and youth employment outcomes as a result of JobFEST.

Industry Leadership Award (Intercontinental Hotels Group): Recognising pledge partners that are not only ‘Young at Heart’ themselves, but that are active in encouraging and supporting other Auckland businesses to increase their support for youth employment.  

School Engagement and Work Experience Award (McDonalds Restaurants NZ): Recognising pledge partners that have demonstrated real commitment to connecting with their local schools and offering training and/or work experience opportunities. 

Youth In-Work Mentoring Award (Downer NZ): Recognising pledge partners that are supporting young people to join their business with training, mentoring and coaching.   

Māori and Pacifica Pasifika Diversity Award (Aurecon): Recognising pledge partners that celebrate our Maori and Pasifika cultures, create specific opportunities for Māori and Pasifika youth, and work with whanau and wider Māori and Pasifika communities locally.

Local Youth Employer Award (The Warehouse): Recognising pledge partners that are outstanding in engaging with local communities to grow employability and support local youth into work, and are growing the community youth pipeline. 

Youth Induction and Development Award (Xero): Recognising pledge partners that have developed and implemented induction and development strategies that support young people entering their employment to stay and grow.

Youth Employment Programme Award (Domino’s Pizza New Zealand Ltd): Recognising pledge partners that have employed young people through a dedicated apprenticeship, intern, cadet, graduate or other structured on-the-job training and development programme.

Innovative Youth Employer Award (SKYCITY): Recognising pledge partners for their willingness to try new and different approaches to youth recruitment and development.

For further information or to arrange interviews please contact:

  • Duncan Croft
  • Senior Communications Advisor (ATEED)
  • Tel:  021 827 046