Leeds City Region supporting careers and development with skills

Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (the LEP) has helped over 200,000 people across the region gain new skills, get a better understanding of their career options and find a route into work during 2019.

Promoting skills and progression are key priorities for the LEP and Combined Authority as it continues to prioritise skills and training that improve opportunities for young people, retraining for career-changers and ensuring that apprenticeships remain accessible.

Improving people’s skills is one of the most powerful ways we can raise productivity across the City Region, which will result in a better standard of living for all.

Roger Marsh OBE DL Chair of the LEP and NP11

Roger Marsh OBE DL, chair of the LEP and NP11 group of Northern local enterprise partnerships, said: "Leeds City Region is a strong and vibrant economy that needs skilled people working in good jobs if it is to reach its potential.

"Improving people’s skills is one of the most powerful ways we can raise productivity across the City Region, which will result in a better standard of living for all. The LEP is working hard to make sure everyone has the opportunity to improve their skills so everyone can share in the region’s prosperity."

The LEP and Combined Authority are prioritising skills and development across Leeds City Region with a range of initiatives to support its goal of enabling inclusive growth and ensuring that that the benefits of economic growth lead to opportunities for all who live and work in region.

FutureGoals is an all-age careers platform providing inspiration, support and high-quality information about the Leeds City Region labour market to help people make better, more informed careers decisions and address current and future skills shortages in key industries.

Following the website’s relaunch in October, FutureGoals has reached over 35,000 local people, while briefing sessions have been delivered to 965 local influencers including educators, advisers, and partners to promote the platform and new resources that influencers can use to inspire young people and adults about the local labour market.

The LEP has also launched [re]boot, an adult re-training programme that targets career changers and graduates. It offers the opportunity to upskill, gain new qualifications and employment in sectors with acute skills shortages, particularly Digital and Creative, Construction and Engineering.

Since October, 87 individuals have completed courses concentrating on Digital skills, Hybrid Vehicle technology and Screen production. Demand for skills in the independent TV production sector is predicted to grow, as Channel 4 establishes its national headquarters in Leeds city centre. Future activity will target harder to reach groups, particularly over 50s.

The LEP’s Enterprise Adviser Network and the Combined Authority’s Enterprise Coordinators are currently engaged with 185 secondary schools and colleges, reaching over 186,000 pupils

The LEP is supporting apprenticeship starts by working to encourage apprenticeship levy-paying employers to support training opportunities across their local communities by transferring unspent levy funds. It has piloted a brokerage service between levy-paying employers and training providers for the purposes of levy transfer and has already seen successes, with Portakabin agreeing to fund 12 apprentices through their training programmes.

The LEP and West Yorkshire Combined Authority are also developing long-term plans to reform the skills system and support the City Region’s economy through the establishment of the Future-Ready Skills Commission and the creation of its Local Industrial Strategy.

The Future-Ready Skills Commission is exploring how greater devolution can create a skills system that ensures people are properly equipped for the jobs of the 21st century and will publish its final recommendations in Spring 2020.

The Local Industrial Strategy is designed to boost productivity and transform the City Region, building on our strengths, improving people’s skills and helping businesses grow while tackling the climate emergency, so everyone can benefit from a strong economy.