Thousands of schoolchildren are to be offered help gaining the “soft skills” they need to find their first job.

The Government said Job Centre staff will work with 12 to 18-year-olds in England to help them plan a career, giving advice on writing a CV, interviews and advise on how to obtain an apprenticeship.

The announcement follows a trial started earlier this year in areas including Birmingham, Lancashire, Yorkshire and London.

Employment Minister Damian Hinds said: “When I speak to employers about taking on young people I hear the same message time and time again, that qualifications are important, but they need people who can work well as part of a team, talk confidently and adapt to new situations.

“These ‘soft skills’ are hugely important to employers and yet many young people struggle to develop them.

“I believe passionately that our young people must get the best start in life, and this is why we are putting rocket boosters under our efforts to help young people plan ahead for a successful career.”

Meanwhile, research has found that young people and recruiters are not connecting with each other, as students are only aware of only one in four graduate opportunities available to them.

Vincent Karremans of online firm, said its study showed graduates were applying for jobs without knowing anything about the role or the company involved.

Mr Karremans said: “Young people are struggling to wade through generic company messaging to find their way to the right job.

“Businesses are also wasting millions by chasing and eventually investing in high numbers of graduates who leave within the first year.”