B&M Retail staff member

The placements are open to 16 to 24-year-olds on Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment

B&M is supporting the government’s Kickstart scheme to get young people into work by offering 2,000 job placements for 16 to 24-year-olds.

The placements are in retail, distribution and support centres across the UK. Interested candidates are asked to talk to a work coach at their local job centre to find out if they are eligible.

“At B&M, we believe in giving back to our local communities and are so proud to be hosting more than 2,000 Kickstart job placements across the UK,” the business said on LinkedIn.

“These opportunities will provide quality work experience and employability skills to those at risk of long-term unemployment and, together, we can support young people back into the world of work.”

B&M provided no additional comment.

The government’s £2bn Kickstart scheme aims to get 250,000 young people into work as the country emerges from the pandemic. It’s open to 16 to 24-year-olds on Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment.

Employers of all sizes can apply for funding for each placement, covering 100% of the age-relevant national minimum wage, national insurance and pension contributions for 25 hours a week, which the business can top up. The government funding runs for six months.

Employers are also eligible for a £1,500 payment for the set-up and training costs of each placement.

B&M’s latest trading update, issued earlier in March, saw it hike full-year profit expectations after sales continued to boom during lockdown. The group expected adjusted EBITDA for the year to 27 March to be in the range of £590m to £620m, up from an earlier range of £540m to £570m.

The retailer opened at least 10 stores in March, including four last weekend.