Executive Summary: LSIP Report AUG 2023
The Cheshire & Warrington Local Skills Improvement Plan (LSIP) has been approved by the Secretary of State in line with the approval criteria set out in the Skills and Post-16 Education Act 2022, and in accordance with the LSIP Statutory Guidance. It has been developed to ensure that employers’ most pressing skills needs are reflected within the local skills system.
The Cheshire & Warrington LSIP aims to support employers in articulating their skills needs whilst brokering links with Post-16 technical education an training providers and shaping current and future provision.
Through the development of our LSIP, our engagement with employers has led to:
- Employers providing specific details of occupations relevant to their businesses.
- Employers highlighting what skills matter for their businesses.
From this, and a range of other intelligence, we have created the LSIP for the sub-region. The aim is to ensure the current and future workforce have the necessary skills and access to local opportunities, as well being able to upskill or reskill to meet changes within industry. We also want to ensure that we can be responsive to the developing needs of employers.
The Cheshire & Warrington LSIP focuses on five key themes: Technical Skills; Accessibility; Employability Competencies; Careers, Education Information Advice and Guidance; and Educational Professionals.
Theme 1 – Technical Skills
Technical skills have been split between LSIP priority sectors of Manufacturing, Life Sciences and Health & Social Care, as well as the cross-cutting themes of Digital and Low Carbon (including green skills). These key priority sectors were identified based on Cheshire & Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership’s Local Skills Report, which was published in January 2022.
Within each of the priority sectors identified, we ensured within our LSIP that we:
- Highlighted specific occupations relating to each sector;
- Considered provision that is already available in the Cheshire and Warrington region;
- Considered emerging technologies and matters that affect business;
- Identified skills gaps and future requirements.
We therefore need to ensure the supply of and demand for technical skills matches the needs of employers, to ensure vacancies are filled, productivity is amplified, and employers are able to thrive. We also need to ensure key cross-cutting themes respond to the needs of all employers.
Theme 2 – Accessibility
Accessibility relates to both employers and learners. The four threads of accessibility can be defined as: accessibility of information; accessibility of training, provision and funding; accessibility for those considered to be at a disadvantage; and accessibility of support in assessing future skills needs.
Theme 3 – Employability Competencies
This can also be defined as Employability Skills. Employers report concerns regarding job applicants not being ‘work-ready’. For example, they do not have sufficient communication ability, behavioural attitudes are not appropriate, or they have unrealistic perceptions of what happens in the workplace. We also need to consider upskilling of the existing workforce. Therefore, what we wish to consider in this LSIP is how employability competencies can be embedded further into curriculum, or further support provided.
Employability competencies can be broad ranging, however key employability competencies that were raised through our employer engagement can be highlighted as follows: Numeracy; MS Office skills; Leadership & managerial ; Personal productivity; Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Awareness; Emotional Intelligence and Resilience (self-assessment and self-regulation); Communication skills; Literacy; and Problem Solving.
Theme 4 – Careers, Education Information Advice & Guidance (CEIAG)
This theme covers many aspects and is closely linked to Themes 3 and 5. The LSIP process seeks to address concerns that careers guidance may not reflect local opportunities and progression routes available; that those delivering CEIAG, educational teaching professionals and those who can influence others (such as parents and carers) have sufficient access to information regarding local opportunities; more opportunities need to be made available to allow for experience within the workplace; and how what is taught in curriculum can be applied within the workplace.
There are a range of aims within this theme:
- Building a future talent pipeline through career exploration activities, showcasing the opportunities available within Cheshire and Warrington.
- Link with theme 5 and ensure Educational Professionals have the required knowledge of what opportunities are available so that they can better advise the future workforce.
- Facilitate careers guidance for those that wish to have a change of career.
- Acknowledge interests in certain areas among young people, such as climate change, to establish targeted careers inspiration activities.
- We consider priorities outlined within the other key themes.
- Identify inequality situations within industry and aim to address them through CEIAG.
Theme 5 – Educational Professionals
We are addressing this theme within two threads:
- Ensuring there are enough educational teaching professionals to deliver the training we need to support employers;
- Ensuring educational professionals have up to date knowledge and understanding of the priority sectors and can apply this to develop the skills of the future workforce (linking with Theme 4).
To address the priorities set out in this LSIP, we have developed a Roadmap which sets out the key actions that need to take place. Through this we have identified key partners to help take forward the key actions; methods that can be used to monitor progress; barriers to achieving the priorities; and key activities that can support achieving the priorities.
For full details, please take a look at our Cheshire & Warrington LSIP.
We are looking for local businesses to help deliver real change in post-16 education, following the priorities within our Local Skills Improvement Plan Roadmap.
We will be arranging working groups to ensure that the skill requirements of local businesses are being taught to the local workforce of the future.
The working groups will focus on the following sectors: Manufacturing (including Engineering and Supply Chain), Health & Social Care, Life Sciences, Digital, and Low Carbon (Green skills). Even if you don’t represent one of these sectors but would still like to take part, please fill out the form below.