Katerina Rüdiger, skills policy adviser at the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, comments on the government's embattled workfare scheme:
"With youth unemployment in the UK at an all time high, we should be doing all we can to encourage employers to help young people, not deter them. In the current labour market, experience of the working world is the single most important aspect employers look for when recruiting, so without it young people struggle to get a job.
"Work experience is a proven way of giving young people a first step on the employment ladder; it enhances their employability by giving them insight and experience of the working world.
"Employers have responsibilities to provide good quality schemes that boost employability and young people need to commit to placements and attend regularly if they are to get any value out of them."