1. Collaboration and Technical Expertise:

Testimonials demonstrating CareerChat UK’s expertise in developing innovative and inclusive technology for career development through collaborative practice:

We are impressed with CareerChat UK’s innovative work on AI and career exploration. We have begun working with them on a pilot project to increase young people’s access to high-quality BBC Bitesize Careers videos.”

– Andrew Swanson, Executive Producer, BBC Bitesize Careers

“The team at CareerChat (UK) Ltd., made the process of building a customised careers chatbot very straightforward. They shared their technical and careers expertise with insights into the types of questions to be embedded within the bot and what the user experience should be. They worked closely with us to smoothly integrate high-quality user-friendly careers resources now available 24:7.”

– Caroline Tolond, Head of Careers and Employability, Arden University

“We are a small HEI that has to invest smartly in our provision. Naturally, CiCi was of great interest to us and provides a vital service in bridging the gap between our student services and the curriculum teams. Catering to a diverse group of students, many with caring or parenting responsibilities, the 24/7 access to careers and progression support is amazing! Although we don’t encourage it, we have even had students on CiCi at 2am. Everyone is really impressed with the technology and the support from Careers Chat UK has been phenomenal with access to cutting edge seminars growing my understanding of AI.”

– Adam Stowe HE Welfare and Progression Officer University Centre Leeds

“CiCi has allowed our students to use AI in a structured and safe way and find out about their progression options. We are a large multi-site college with over 8,500 14 to 18, CiCi means they have 24-hour access to ask questions and get some help. We know that young people will ask adults they trust about their careers ideas, it would be great for our students if CiCi would be part of this trusted network. Many of our students have English as a second language so the translation facilities are great.” 

– Lisa Cooper, Careers Learning Manager, Leeds City College, Luminate Education Group.

We are very proud and excited at The Bemrose School to have developed a great partnership with CareerChat UK. Their dedication to quality, easy to access careers advice and information is evident in all aspects of what they do. The team made it so simple for us to pilot CiCi across our school by promoting it personally to our students and we have seen how CiCi’s personalised and friendly careers support will help our student to explore their future career possibilities, raise aspirations and become aware of labour market information. CiCi is a fantastic and easy resource that can be used by students of all abilities.

– Claire Amos, Lead in Careers Delivery and HR Business at The Bemrose School and Sixth Form

CiCi is a terrific way to support students to sift through careers information and advice with the option of speaking to a human adviser. It breaks content down into manageable chunks so that young people are not overwhelmed with information. It is a valuable tool in helping students to prepare for face-to-face careers guidance and helps teachers to understand the types of careers information students are searching for.”

– Baron Miles, Central Strategic Careers Lead, Aspirations Academy Trust, Dorchester

We recently worked with Dr Deidre Hughes as a keyspeaker as part of the Eastern Education Group – Festival of Learning – Making Tech Relevant. Deidre illuminated the future of career education through her innovative approach sharing AI supported tool CiCi. Her professionalism, passion and insightful knowledge in career guidance showcased a vision where technology becomes a relevant ally in shaping and evolving landscape of skills, pedagogy, and workforce dynamics. Under the expertise of Deidre’s guidance, CiCi emrged as pioneering tool, demonstrating the intersection of technology and education. We look forward to working further to explore the transformative advancements that will help navigate careers and learning in the future.”

– Ness Bally, Projects and Bidding Lead Facilitator, West Suffolk College, part of the Eastern Education Group

“The CDI supports innovation in career development and CiCi Chatbot is a great example of bringing new thinking to the way we provide careers information, advice and guidance. Digital has a key role to play in preparing clients for career guidance interviews, providing easy access to valuable information and linking people with qualified practitioners where they need more support to meet their needs. The CDI believes expert, well-designed technology solutions like CiCi complement the interaction with careers advisers, counsellors and coaches to provide an enhanced service to those looking to start and progress their careers.” David Morgan, CEO, UK Career Development Institute”

– David Morgan, CEO of the Career Development Institute

“The CareerChat team offers new insights to the innovative use of artificial intelligence and chatbots. For employability professionals this is new tool and approach holds significant promise in supporting adults with their employability skills and subsequent transitions into fast changing learning and work environments.”

– Scott Parkin, CEO, Institute of Employability Professionals

CareerChat UK is a small company making a big impact. I have been impressed by the team’s energy, enthusiasm, and expertise in using AI and large language models effectively to support schools, colleges, universities, and charities in their endeavours to inform and guide young people and adults’ career decision-making.”

– David Solomides, Business Growth Coach & Non-Executive Director at ZENEN Business and Education Services, Exeter

2. Social Impact and Community Support:

Testimonials showcasing CiCi’s role in supporting communities, including Ukrainian families and vulnerable adults through partnerships and programmes:

City & Guilds and CiCi supported the London Communities Programme, working with vulnerable adults and university students who have completed their studies and were searching for employment.”

– Patrick Craven

“CiCi is supporting Ukrainian families as part of the FaceWork Group, London, a social enterprise that equips people to face the changing world of work through skills training and by developing affordable workspaces.

– Stephen Carrick-Davies, CEO of FaceWork

3. Practical Application and User Feedback:

Selected testimonials highlighting the practical application of CiCi, its ease of use, and positive user feedback from practitioners and individuals. Please note, these testimonials below are a small sample from feedback gathered from CiCi users and as such are anonymised.

“Info at their fingertips (for those using smartphone technology and apps), able to prepare them ahead of a 1:1 meeting. Challenge: access to I.T., may not use apps, some people prefer human contact but obviously this is just about providing another option to access careers advice.”

– Careers Practitioner, Newcastle

“CiCi will support and complement careers guidance sessions. Clients have an opportunity to start building their own fundamental knowledge on these areas before they meet us in person.”

– Careers Practitioner, Bristol

“I liked the speedy reaction to my inputs, it’s fast and I like the features which reflect many of the enquiries we receive from adults using our service.”

– Manager, Derby

“I liked the speedy responses and the personalisation of CiCi. I would use CiCi again. CiCi provided the information I hoped for.”

– Adult, Derby

“I thought it was easy to have one place for all the information and not have to scroll many different sites.”

– Adult, Bristol

“I really liked the CV function and jobs function. I think it is an absolutely brilliant function and very clever and would save someone so much time. Sometimes looking for jobs can be daunting and time-consuming, but the fact it filters it is great.”

– Careers Practitioner, Newcastle

“CV help was amazing and very simple to understand and many options on how to help with CVs for example links for layout, how to write 1 and what to put in…I could talk on what I thought I was lacking in skills rather than read a boring lengthy web page, very helpful on how to do unpaid work and help the local area. How to find and provided a link for me to go see what is available in the area and would suit me.”

– Adult, London

“The fact that it provides videos and information on salary is really good and useful.”

– Practitioner and Trainer, West Suffolk

“The skill pictures for jobs were fab! Links to extra help were readily available which is good.”

– Adult, Bristol

4. Educational Impact and Student Feedback:

Testimonials demonstrating CiCi’s impact on students’ career exploration and feedback from young people, parents and teachers:

“It asked me what I could see myself doing in the future and asked me to rate certain job activities. I found it useful because it told me the types of jobs I might like rather than just suggesting specific jobs for me corresponding to my answers.”

– Year 7 student, The Bemrose School

“It helped me think of different jobs\career I wanna do and made my knowledge of different jobs more wide.”

– Year 8 student, The Aspirations Trust

“Gives you multiple sources on different things about the job (skills, pay, etc).”

– Year 9 student, The Bemrose School

“I can use this to link my teaching in the classroom more easily to careers. Thankyou!

Careers Leader, The Aspirations Trust

“I watched Lauren show parents how easy it was to use the QR code on their mobile phones at a parents evening and it was great to see their aces light up with excitement.”

Careers Leader, The Bemrose School

Publications in Academic and Professional Outlets:

oeb.global: in 2023 Deirdre Hughes was  published in oeb.global Insights, September 2023:  ‘Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Career Guidance: Transformation or Extinction? The Coming Age of the Robo-Careers Advisers’ https://oeb.global/oeb-insights/artificial-intelligence-ai-and-career-guidance-transformation-or-extinction-the-coming-age-of-the-robo-careers-advisers/

OEB Conference, Berlin with the OECD and expert colleagues from Norway, 2023. Deirdre Hughes and Chris Percy contributed to an expert panel discussion ‘Navigating the Robo-Revolution: AI and the Future of Career Guidance’  exploring  the opportunities and risks of AI being applied in a career development context https://oeb.global/programme/agenda/oeb-23/sessions/33510  

The European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (Cedefop) is the European Union’s reference centre for vocational education and training, skills and qualifications. They provide information, research, analyses and evidence on vocational education and training, skills and qualifications for policymaking in the EU Member States.

In 2021, Deirdre Hughes co-wrote a chapter in the online book ‘Digitalisation Transitions in Lifelong Guidance:  Rethinking Careers Practitioner Professionalism, A CareersNet expert collection’. with Füsun Akkök entitled ‘Career chat: the art of AI and the human interface in career development’ https://www.cedefop.europa.eu/en/publications/6202#group-downloads   

CDI Briefing Paper. In June 2023, Deirdre Hughes wrote ‘The AI and Chatbot Revolution’ (Page 1 below for reference) https://www.thecdi.net/CDI/media/Write/Documents/CDI_Use_of_AI_and_chatbots_Briefing_paper_June_2023_FINAL.pdf?ext=.pdf

OECD Disrupted Futures Conference 2023 – Deirdre Hughes and Chris Percy delivered ‘Navigating Career Paths in the Age of AI’https://www.slideshare.net/OECDEDU/disrupted-futures-2023-navigating-career-paths-in-the-age-of-ai