Kickstart overview

Kickstart is a 6-month paid work placement with a local employer. It provides a fully funded opportunity for young people aged 16 -24 to gain work experience in a Harrow business. There are a range of roles across a wide variety of sectors, including; marketing, leisure, construction and more!

Harrow Council’s employment team, Xcite will be working closely with local businesses and Job Centre Plus to recruit for these roles – and will support the young person with:

  • Career advice and setting goals for long-term work
  • CV and interview preparations
  • Understanding the importance of attendance, timekeeping and teamwork
  • E-learning and well-being courses

Criteria and eligibility


How to apply

If you see an opportunity you would like to apply for, please apply through your work coach at Job Centre Plus.


Support for employers

Employers of all sizes will be funded to offer the job placements.

Central government will provide:

  • 100% of National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week for 6 months
  • Employer National Insurance contributions
  • Harrow Council’s employment team, Xcite will provide employability support for the young people and will coordinate the employer applications

To take part in the Kickstart Scheme, organisations need to:

  • Create a one-page job description for the young person
  • State the duration of the advert and potential start date
  • Provide a company or charity registration number, and postcode
  • Send details to xcite@harrow.gov.uk

Full details of Government support to employers.


Useful links


Contact us

Email xcite@harrow.gov.ukor visit harrow.gov.uk/Xcite for additional information.

Follow Xcite:

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This will be my first job. Will I get help with interview practice?

A. Yes, an employment adviser will work with you to prepare. We will also provide weekly virtual workshops on interview practice, preparing CVs, and applying for jobs.

Will I be guaranteed a job after my placement ends?

A. Some people will be lucky enough to find a great placement that leads to a job. We can’t guarantee that will happen, but we will help you negotiate that where possible. Either way, you will learn valuable skills and have a work reference to move on with.

Am I paid Universal credit on work placement?

A. You will be paid National minimum wage, so most people would not continue to receive Universal credit. There will be people who receive housing benefit contributions and that would continue

What if the placement isn’t a good match for me?

You will need to speak to your Xcite employment adviser to assess why this isn’t right for you, and we can try to find a better match

Do I get travel expenses?

You would usually pay your travel expenses yourself

Do I get any help at the end of the placement?

You will be getting help throughout the placement to build your work-related skills. At the 4-month stage we will step up the support to help you find a job or apprenticeship

I’ve seen a placement can I approach the company myself.

You can certainly speak to the company to see if its right for you. We would then have to apply through Job Centre Plus to make sure the funding is attached to you and the company

Can I work more than 25 hours per week?

You can work more than 25 hours a week, the company will need to cover your wages from their own resources for the additional hours over the government sponsored 25

How does this work with Covid distancing? – Do I work from home?

We will all strictly adhere to government guidance on social distancing, and this will mean you may need to work from home. We will hold workshops on how this can work for you, how communication will work and the people we have in place to help. We will be setting up virtual peer groups, so you get to speak to other young people on the scheme and get their views and insight on how to get organised and get the best out of opportunities on offer. Good news – you never miss the bus to work

Frequently Asked Questions for managers (Xcite)

Q1. How do I offer a placement to a young person?

A1. Begin by creating a 1-page job description, remembering the young person is unlikely to have work experience and you will need to train them. Send this to Xcite@harrow.gov.uk and we can explain the next steps.

Q2. How does the government funding work?

A2. Funding is given when the young person appears on your payroll and is verified by HMRC. You will receive additional payments at 2, 4 and 6 months in arrears. You also need to pay the young person weekly or monthly from your own resources.

Q3. How do I find the young person?

A3. Your job description will appear on the Job Centre Plus website. Applicants are then matched by JCP advisers and will then send you the CVs. You then interview and select as usual.

Q4. Can I interview virtually?

A4. Yes

Q5. What happens at the end of the 6 months?

A5. The Xcite employment advisers will be working on their employability skills throughout the 6 months and will help them find an apprenticeship or job to progress to.

Q6. What if the work placement isn’t a good match for my young person?

A6. We can try and find them a new placement and find you a new young person.