In my first Message I mentioned that the one key area that the LEP could do even more to stimulate is the skill base of the people who live in our county. It will become increasingly critical that businesses in Hertfordshire are able to secure the employees they want locally and that in turn local people see working in the county as a highly attractive option.
It is therefore heartening to share with you the success of The Careers & Enterprise Company which is being delivered locally by Hertfordshire LEP in partnership with Youth Connexions.
The Government-funded programme is based on a simple premise: to match schools to local employers. This will enable young people to make informed career choices and, crucially, develop work-ready skills that meet employers’ needs.
At its heart are local employers, from large corporates to SMEs, who act as Enterprise Advisers to schools/colleges by working with senior leadership teams to:
• help connect the curriculum to future work opportunities;
• provide access to workplaces;
• act as relatable role models to young people.
I’m delighted to tell you that just six months into operation a total of 65 schools have already signed up to the Hertfordshire programme, with more expressing an interest each week. Thanks to its popularity I encourage more employers to come forward and get involved.
The benefits for businesses are both the opportunity to form lasting connections with schools, giving access to a diverse, entry-level recruitment pool as well as becoming part of a wider network committed to resolving skills issues.
Hertfordshire LEP’s Skills Strategy for 2015-2017 identified that nearly half of surveyed employers in Hertfordshire had identified skills gaps in their existing workforce, and 45 per cent of local businesses considered skills gaps to be significantly detrimental to their competitiveness. By plugging these skills gaps together we are not only enhancing the opportunities available for young people, but strengthening our businesses and bolstering the local economy. A win-win situation all round.
Chair of Hertfordshire LEP
For more information contact Senior Enterprise Co-ordinator Daniel Gendle.
email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Mobile: 07464 678767.