Supported Internships for Employers

Supported internships
Supported internships

For further information on supported internships, please visit our Supported internships webpage.


Supported internships were introduced by the government in 2013 to give a greater focus on preparing young people with special educational needs and disabilities with the skills needed for adulthood and employment.

A simple model ensures that there is minimal impact on the business and the student and there is no additional cost as each supported internship is government funded.

What is a supported internship?

Supported internships enable young people aged 16-24 who hold an Education, Health and Care plan with a learning disability and/or Autism to make it easier for them to enter the job market by equipping them with the skills they need for work, through learning in the workplace.

Supported internships are unpaid and last for a minimum of six months. The main goal is for the young person to move into paid employment at the end. During their time at the employer, young people complete a personalised study programme which includes English, maths and employability skills.

Intern standing with equipment

The main goal is for the young person to move into paid employment at the end.

How does a supported internship work?

Interns work for an employer for a minimum of six months to learn the role and tackle the tasks needed to become suitable for when paid employment might arise.

Each intern and business will receive on-site training from a professional job coach who will support the intern to learn the skills required for that workplace or task and encourage them to become involved in support systems such as co-workers. Support will then be gradually faded as and when the intern achieves independence in the workplace. This is known as the learn, train and fade model.

What is a Job coach?

Job coaches support the young person and employer to ensure it is successful for everyone.

The job coach will work with local employers and Interns to ensure there is a suitable job match, depending on their interests and aspirations.

The job coach will monitor the intern’s progress throughout their internship and review/discuss opportunities with the employer.

Intern setting dinner table

The job coach will monitor the intern’s progress throughout their internship.

What are the benefits to your business?

  • Free Job matching service – interns will have learnt the role and be fully trained and ready for when a paid vacancy arises. This, therefore, reduces recruitment costs for your business.
  • Support from an experienced Job Coach – training and support will be tailored to each Intern and business throughout the duration of the Internship, while ensuring the Intern completes the job role to a high standard.
  • Extended job interview – the internship can act as an extended working interview which gives you an increased chance of getting the right person.
  • Elevated morale – supported internships can improve morale and team working, while giving existing staff the chance to lead and improve their personal performance.

Contact us

For further information please contact: