People & Skills Projects - 28 April 2015

D2N2 and Employers Join Forces to Launch Provider Charter

Employers will be able to review and publicly endorse the colleges and education providers training their workforce, under an innovative ‘Provider Charter’ created by the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership.

A range of colleges and education providers across Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire – responsible for delivering learning programmes to thousands of students – including members of the D2N2 Provider Advisory Board, gave their views on a draft Provider Charter earlier this year (2015), which was then approved by the D2N2 Skills and Employment Commission.

The D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership promotes economic growth, jobs creation, and skills and training across Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire. Its Charter will help employers and education providers work better together; to ensure training provides the skills employers need to further develop their workforce’s skills, and to increase  trainees’ and new recruits’ employability.

D2N2ProviderCharterLaunch1

The D2N2 Provider Charter, launched with Richard Horsley, Chair of the D2N2 Skills and Employment Commission (centre left) and Paul Eeles, Chair of the D2N2 Provider Advisory Board (centre right).

It’s believed the D2N2 Provider Charter is a first for the Midlands, in the way it fosters closer collaboration between employers and education providers, and sets the agenda to make skills provision in the D2N2 area employer and sector-led.

Following the D2N2 Provider Charter’s official launch today (April 28) – at a meeting of its Provider Advisory Board at the EMFEC (East Midlands Further Education Council) headquarters in Nottingham – the Provider Advisory Board members involved in helping draft the Charter will be the first to formally sign up to it.

The voluntary charter will commit them to principles such as:

  • engaging with employers, to find out what ‘skills gaps’ they currently have in their workforce and what training courses need to be provided to fill those;
  • ensuring they know which key sectors D2N2 has identified – through its Skills for Growth Strategy and Strategic Economic Plan – as vital for economic growth in the area;
  • tracking the career development of apprentices and learners, to ensure the right skills and training are provided, and that these are updated in line with businesses’ needs.

Many more education providers are expected to sign up to the Charter, which they can do via an online form on the D2N2 website at www.d2n2lep.org/providers . The D2N2 Provider Advisory Board whose members include senior strategic educators, will ensure those signing up will adhere to the Charter’s principles.

Employers will now be able to access, from one place, simplified information provided by Charter providers – including the types of courses they run, OFSTED rating and student satisfaction ratings – to enable them to choose the college or training establishment best suited to providing the training needs for their apprentices and existing workforce. 

At the end of the training employers will be able to grade, or review, how well the provider met their skills needs, with this information also being provided online for other businesses to view in future. Providers will be able to use positive endorsements in their publicity and will have a right of reply should there be any negative comments, before any review goes public.

Richard Horsley, Chair of the D2N2 Skills and Employment Commission, said: “As far as we’re aware, our Provider Charter is the first to provide businesses with a ‘one stop shop’, to inform them of the most appropriate provider to meet their skills and training needs. Employers will go into it knowing the provider is keen to work with them, can provide training solutions they need and that their review of how beneficial they found the process will help others.

“The D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership is committed to promoting economic growth and jobs creation across its area. Making sure employers have access to a skilled workforce and that people who are unemployed can access the right training to get a job, is key to that.”

Paul Eeles – Chief Executive Officer of the EMFEC group, Chair of the D2N2 Provider Advisory Board and an advisor to its Skills and Employment Commission – added: “This Charter, shaped by the views and opinions of local stakeholders and providers, will help to realise D2N2’s ambition of creating 55,000 new jobs by 2023.

“It will create a fit-for-purpose, high quality skills and employment system which ensure our young people are ready for work, that our graduates have access to graduate level jobs, our employers can provide apprenticeship career pathways, and that our businesses can recruit and develop a skilled workforce.”

To read D2N2’s Provider Charter and, for providers, to sign up to it online see web link www.d2n2lep.org/providers

For more information on this media release or D2N2’s work contact Sean Kirby, D2N2 Communications Officer, on 0115 9578749 or email: sean.kirby@d2n2lep.org

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