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    Employer Ownership of Skills Prospectus February 2012

    Ministerial foreword

    This Government is determined to do all it can to support growth across the economy. Skilled people are essential to securing that growth. It is vital we create the best environment for businesses to develop and train their workforce and to strive for success. There is no doubt that times are tough for businesses seeking to develop and grow and for young people seeking the best possible start to their career. I believe that we can work together behind a common goal of using our greatest asset – our people – to secure real competitive advantage.

    Government investment in workforce skills has most impact when employers have true ownership. That means employers being empowered, and supported, to develop their staff in the way that most closely responds to business need. It means employers stepping up and working together to address skills issues that hold back their sector. And it means Government providing a clear framework to support business investment.

    That is why we have freed up colleges and training providers to be better able to respond to employers’ needs; put in place a range of measures to strengthen and extend our Apprenticeship programme; and are investing significantly through the Growth and Innovation Fund to support employer-led collective action to overcome skills barriers, through modern Guilds or other innovative networks for example.

    But we are not complacent. We must go further and be prepared to try inventive new ways to tackle age-old problems. The Employer Ownership of Skills pilot is exactly that. It is a substantial commitment, backed with public investment, to step back and give space to employers to take ownership of the skills agenda.

    This prospectus opens up the first phase of the pilot. It invites employers to put forward proposals that set out how they would use direct public investment, alongside their own, to improve the skills of their current and future workforce and to drive enterprise, jobs and growth within a sector, supply chain or locality. I encourage you to use this opportunit

    European Regional Development Fund Northern Powerhouse
    Partners Department for Business Innovation and Skills Finance Birmingham