Recent findings from the Office for National Statistics show that the UK’s unemployment rate is at its lowest level since 1974 – at just 3.8%. The figures suggest that a booming higher-skilled jobs market is the driving force behind the country’s continued record employment rates.
Almost 15 million people are now in skilled roles – from professional tradespeople to scientists, nurses and accountants. This is a boost of 2.6 million over the past nine years, making up over 75% of the growth in employment. There are also less and less women out of work, with female unemployment falling to a record low of 3.7%.
At the Growth Company, we play an integral part in supporting people into work – including those who have been out of work for a while due to complex physical and mental health needs. In the past year alone, we’ve placed 11,320 clients into work and facilitated almost 60,000 career management progressions. Those figures really are something to be proud of!
Our newly launched Skills Support programmes will strengthen our employment offer, and allow us to expand our employment services across the North. Back in February, we were delighted to announce that we had won a £56.5 million contract package to strengthen our existing employment provision – and on April 1st, we began delivering the three programmes across Greater Manchester, Lancashire and Sheffield City Region.
Skills Support for Employment will help unemployed individuals to improve their skills and knowledge, whilst giving them access to a wide range of free qualifications and exclusive job opportunities that will put them in a better position when it comes to finding work. Our clients will receive one-to-one support tailored around their needs and career goals.
Meanwhile, Skills Support for Growth is designed for 15-24 year olds who aren’t in education, employment or training. The programme provides young people with vocational skills, confidence and work experience opportunities to help them prepare for the world of work. Like Skills Support for Employment, clients will also be able to gain free qualifications and benefit from tailored support.
Finally, Skills Support for the Workforce helps businesses to upskill their staff through bespoke training. Not only does this reduce skills gaps and help employees to climb the career ladder, it also increases productivity, morale and loyalty amongst staff.
I’m looking forward to hearing of the many success stories we will have as a result of these contracts, and I’m proud to work for an organisation that plays such a crucial part in reducing unemployment rates across Greater Manchester and beyond.
If you’d like more information on any of our Skills Support programmes, or would like to check if you’re eligible, visit our website.