Three Key Steps to NCS Success

Ready-to-launch-220914Across the UK and various social media there is a great deal of chat about National Citizen Service (NCS) – you only have to look at the growth numbers over the last four years to know what a tremendous success the programme is.


Three key factors will determine whether NCS is a success, and each stage is as critical as the next. According to Dave Todd, Contract Manager for NCS in NW3, it doesn’t do us any good to have record recruitment numbers if when the bus pulls out it’s half empty because the young people haven’t turned up.

The mantra to the teams in the field is simple: Sign up doesn’t mean turn up.

Dave says the teams must remain focused through the entire journey from sign up to turn up.

The journey covers three steps:

  1. recruitment
  2. keeping warm
  3. follow up

As we move through April, the focus is on warm up events.  Red flags can pop up and the first is when a recruit fails to show up for a warm up event.  When a recruit is a ‘no show’ it’s usually due to one of three reasons.

  1. they don’t see what’s in it for them
  2. something legitimate came up and they had a scheduling conflict
  3. they forgot

What we do in the first 24 hours after a ‘no-show’ is critical.  We must follow up immediately, so that we can find out the reason and re-engage that young person.  We must reach out to them across multiple platforms until we get an answer.

If it’s reason #1: They don’t see what’s in it for them.  It’s another opportunity for us to reinforce that warm ups are a taste of what NCS is all about.  It’s an opportunity to meet potential future team mates, meet members of staff and talk with NCS graduates one on one about their experiences in the programme.

If it’s reason #2: Then simply re-cap on what happened and what information was shared, how they can get a copy and push the next warm up session.

If it’s reason #3: There is no excuse a person should forget about the warm up event.  All the teams have access to email, text and social media campaigns to push out reminders about upcoming warm up sessions.

NCS is on target to meet its goal for the summer and Cumbrian young people are the real winners.  They walk away from the programme with greater confidence, self awareness and responsibility.


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