Developing a lifelong career road-mapping website and app: iShine
Eluceo was set up to bring together education and employment. It consists of the Eluceo education website, which contains a wealth of career and education information and a unique lifelong career road-mapping app, iShine®.
iShine® can be found online and can also be downloaded onto smartphones. It is freely available, but registration is required to tailor a user’s experience of iShine®.
Prior to developing iShine®, the Eluceo team ran STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Maths) projects in local schools for students aged 11-16. Focusing on biotechnology and robotics, these gave students a better understanding of what STEM careers are available to them, alongside complementary careers such as business analysis, marketing and law, and a chance to meet employers in their workplace and gain some hands-on experience.
Working in schools, the team at Eluceo realised that students’ knowledge was limited to well-known careers, whereas they focused on careers that were less well known and were to set to increase in the future. At the same time, outside the workplace the team met a large number of people reevaluating their careers and wondering why they had made the decisions they had in the first place.
Furthermore, the pace of technological changes and the precariousness of some industries led the Eluceo team to believe that developing and building skills should be the focus for an individual, rather than just their career.
This led to the development of a lifelong careers app, iShine®, to help users make informed decisions at the pinch points in their career, whether they are just starting out, looking to change career or are re-entering the workplace.
How does iShine® work?
iShine® helps users take control of their future by offering a unique way to plan, track and manage their career. Using LMI for All, iShine® takes the risk out of rethinking career plans giving users confidence to work towards their passions.
Upon registration, users are asked to complete a short questionnaire about their current and previous work experience, education, hobbies and responsibilities, such as being a parent/carer. They are also asked what they want to gain from using iShine®, whether it’s finding a job, changing career, re-entering the workplace, or discovering their first career move. This knowledge means that Eluceo can tailor their iShine® experience, displaying information pertinent to each user and their stage in their career.
On completing their questionnaire, users are presented with three options:
- My Profile displays their top eight in-demand employability skills alongside their top eight O*NET knowledge and abilities, and their career interests. From the profile option, users can update their personal, education, qualification and experience information.
- Plan my Future allows users to explore careers that match their current qualifications, skills, knowledge, abilities, interests, and careers that require users to develop additional qualifications, experience, skills, or knowledge. Associated with each career is a set of information which includes vacancies, skills needed, the working environment and a career pathway.
- Improve my Skills option allows users to develop their skills by presenting them with options such as college courses, online courses and master’s courses. These are based on the user’s skills and knowledge gaps, which are derived by comparing the user’s skills and knowledge to O*NET’s knowledge and skills set for the career. This means that upon completion of the course(s) users will be closer to their ideal career role.
The iShine® ‘What If’ function, embedded in these three options, allows users to add a qualification they are thinking of acquiring to see how it will change their skills, knowledge and abilities, and in turn any careers that might be suitable for them. This is useful if people are unsure what to do next and gives them the confidence to follow a certain direction.
Users can also set and work towards career goals, such as getting together their CV and cover letter. Using actionable micro-steps, setting a goal offers users a unique way to motivate individuals to achieve their career ambitions.
To further support users, there is a comprehensive search function where users can search for careers, jobs, courses and universities. In addition, there is a print function, whereby users can print a copy of their profile and resume.
Who is iShine® aimed at?
It has a broad user base, however, focuses on career pinch points, such as returning to work after a career break, changing career, facing redundancy and finding a graduate job. It can also be used by students under the age of 16 with parental consent, and therefore suitable for use in schools.
How does iShine® use LMI for All?
iShine® uses a range of data from the LMI for All including:
- O*NET’s skills, knowledge, abilities and interests related to a career role
- The Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE) for the pay and hours associated with each career role
- The Department for Education’s Employer Skills Survey (ESS) for hard-to-fill and skills shortage vacancies
- The HESA Destination of Leavers survey for the higher education destinations
- Working Futures for occupational and sectoral forecasts
- Vacancies from the Department of Work and Pensions ‘Findajob’
Future iShine® iterations
Eluceo’s future aim is to give individuals a more personalised iShine® experience. Users will be able to select a career that they are interested in, and iShine® will hand-hold them through the steps they need to take to achieve this career. Depending on their requirements and preferences (time, money, location etc.) iShine® will be able to suggest specific courses to improve specific skills and knowledge, followed by a route into work.
Eluceo will also be focusing on technology skills, as well as knowledge. Users will be able to get a better understanding of the technology skills needed for a career, and how and where to gain these skills. The Eluceo team is also looking to incorporate the apprenticeship data into the website and iShine®.