How CASCAID Products Meet and Exceed the Eight Benchmarks in the Gatsby Report

There is no single ‘magic bullet’ in career guidance.


The government is referring to the Gatsby report on ‘Good Career Guidance’ when discussing its intentions towards careers advice and guidance in schools.  This article highlights how using a combination of our products can help meet and exceed the eight benchmarks recommended in the report.

Gatsby Benchmark 1: A Stable Careers Programme

Outstanding Directions helps create a stable careers programme by highlighting the need to:

  • delegate responsibility to a single governor,
  • have careers guidance as a fixed agenda point at governor’s meetings,
  • create a ‘ring-fenced’ careers budget,
  • employ a careers co-ordinator to co-ordinate careers activities and events, and to ensure the robustness of students careers aspiration data,
  • ensure relevant staff have regular careers guidance training and are kept up to date on local labour market information
  • involve parents / guardians in career guidance activities and events

Outstanding Directions also includes survey tools to allow you to see how well the programme is understood by students, parents and teachers.


Gatsby Benchmark 2: Learning from Career and Labour Market Information

New Kudos contains career information on over 750 careers and has been designed to be easily understood by young people.   It also helps students understand the sheer breadth of careers available to them; as it states in the Gatsby report, “good career guidance is important for social mobility as it opens students’ eyes to careers they may not have considered.”  However, too much choice can lead to anxiety and this is why CASCAID has developed tools to help students ‘discover’ careers.  New Kudos also contains the latest government-collected labour market information that matters most to students, such as projected opportunities, i.e. not the job situation as it is today, but what will it look like when they are ready to enter the world of work.

Launchpad, our program aimed at Key Stage 3 students meets this benchmark in a similar fashion.

Adult Directions our program aimed at adults, meets this benchmark in a similar fashion.

Paws in Jobland aimed at primary school pupils, meets this benchmark in a similar fashion.

Outstanding Directions meets this benchmark by directing the user to create links with local employers to facilitate events / talks / workplace visits for the students to gain local labour market information.


Gatsby Benchmark 3: Addressing the Needs of Each Pupil

We agree that “advice and support should be tailored to the needs of each pupil.”

New Kudos, New Kudos Pathways: HE and Adult Directions all collect the users’ career aspirations and related data, such as intended destinations and future subjects.

CASCAID Manager has been designed to deliver the data that helps achieve exactly that.  Both online and through printable reports, it provides the data that helps focus interventions, activities and events and make them as effective as possible.

Outstanding Directions is very clear on how important this benchmark is and helps organisations improve by:

  • employing a careers co-ordinator to check on data quality, collate impact reports for the SLT, and the continuing use of relevant reports aimed at guiding the planning of career activities and events
  • using a software system to collect and distribute data on students career aspirations
  • using students intended destination data to guide interventions, activities and events
  • involving parents / guardians in careers activities and events
  • involving local authorities to best support SEN students and those at risk of becoming NEET
  • using age-appropriate guidance to ensure the message is properly understood
  • using properly informed face-to-face guidance activities that are focused on those students that would benefit the most


Gatsby Benchmark 4: Linking Curriculum Learning to Careers

Outstanding Directions leads the user to produce ‘a systematic and thorough process’ which highlights the need to:

  • train staff in career guidance
  • update staff regularly on local labour market information
  • include all teaching staff
  • regularly update teaching materials

New Kudos includes the ability to investigate careers starting from a subject, so a STEAM teacher can start at their subject and show students the wide variety of careers the subject leads to.

New Kudos Pathways: HE allows users to see the HE courses that lead to each relevant career.

Launchpad meets this benchmark in a similar fashion to New Kudos but is aimed at Key Stage 3 students.


Gatsby Benchmark 5: Encounters with Employers and Employees

Outstanding Directions directs the user to create a program of visits by Employers, using students’ data to ensure attendance by students who will benefit the most.  A follow-up program should also be developed to ensure that learning and motivation are maintained.


Gatsby Benchmark 6: Experiences of Workplaces

Outstanding Directions directs the user to create a program of visits to employers’ workplaces, again using students’ data to ensure attendance by students who will benefit the most and with an emphasis on a follow-up program to ensure that learning and motivation are maintained.


Gatsby Benchmark 7: Encounters with Further and Higher Education

New Kudos Pathways: HE includes a weekly update UCAS HE Courses.  These are linked to careers so each student can discover careers they are interested in and easily see which HE courses are relevant and where they can be studied.

New Kudos contains a similar benefit for student’s interested in FE courses as these are also linked to careers.

Outstanding Directions advises schools on the need to arrange student visits to and from HE and FE organisations, along with the need to use data to ensure the right students attend these events, share information between the relevant teaching staff to ensure the information is up-to-date and to help with student transitions.


Gatsby Benchmark 8: Personal Guidance

New Kudos supports personal guidance by providing a printable report detailing each student’s career and qualification aspirations.

New Kudos Pathways: HE adds the students HE course aspirations and skills to the report.

Adult Directions provides the same benefit for its users.

CASCAID Manager allows advisers to access these reports.

Outstanding Directions helps schools create a career guidance system where guidance is ‘face-to-face’, age-appropriate and impartial.



About our programs….

New Kudos is the UK’s most popular impartial careers guidance and information program that helps young people plan their future and make informed decisions.

New Kudos Pathways: HE is an optional upgrade (to New Kudos). Designed to help young people make informed decisions, Pathways: HE allows users to assess whether their A-level choices are a good fit, as well as helping them to analyse their skills and see what they could achieve if they aimed higher.

Launchpad provides students with a Functional Skills and PLTS profiling quiz which identifies personal skills and compares them to the skills they need to study GCSE subjects at Key Stage 4.

Students can discover more about their subject options and identify how each subject supports career choice. Launchpad introduces almost 500 careers, with essential information on each career along with engaging case studies, photographs and videos illustrating real-life work activities.

Adult Directions offers adults of all ages and abilities an outstanding online career and skills matching program that supports their career and employment decisions.

CASCAID Manager is a free tool provided with every product license.  It is designed to help advisers and teachers manage and track users of CASCAID programs, including New Kudos, New Kudos Pathways: HE, Adult Directions and Launchpad. The latest version allows you to easily create and manage user accounts and to view reports on user activity.

Outstanding Directions is a free online tool to help schools evaluate and improve their careers guidance provision. This powerful tool was developed by experienced career guidance experts and designed for Senior Leadership Team staff.


If you are interested in these or any other CASCAID products then we’d love to show what they can do for you.  Simply register for a free webinar at


CASCAID.  Our purpose?  Your purpose.

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