A skills plan to increase job opportunities for people across the Tay Cities Region has been launched.
The Skills Investment Plan for the Tay Cities Region focuses on the skills needs of people and businesses across Angus, Dundee, Perth and Kinross and north east Fife.
Developed by Skills Development Scotland (SDS) alongside a range of partners including local authorities, colleges and universities, the plan will inform delivery of the Tay Cities Region Deal, which includes funding of up to £20million from Scottish Government towards skills and employability.
The plan focuses on ensuring more people have the skills to access high-quality jobs in the key and growth sectors that drive the region’s economy and features a broad range of measures including:
- enhancing the of careers information, advice and guidance available to young people and the existing workforce to promote careers in key sectors across the region
- mounting an effective regional effort around Foundation Apprenticeships to ensure year-on-year growth across each part of the region, with opportunities in all schools and with employers involved at every stage
- creating an integrated regional approach to reducing gender inequality in specific occupations, targeting young people and people at all stages of their working lives
- creating a regional workforce development fund, open to employers in the key and growth sectors.
- enhancing mentoring and e-learning support for owner-managers in micro-businesses and third sector organisations, focusing on key and growth sectors and their supply chains
The plan was welcomed by Business, Fair Work and Skills Minister Jamie Hepburn during a visit to the Carnoustie Golf Hotel and Spa in Angus where he met with apprentices and staff members.
He said: “The Scottish Government has committed up to £20million towards developing skills and employability through the Tay Cities Deal, and this plan is fundamental to ensuring that investment boosts fair work, inclusive growth and productivity.
“It’s good news for the people of the region who will benefit from greater opportunities for training and learning throughout their working lives, and for businesses needing a pipeline of talent to meet their growth ambitions.
“It’s part of an investment in the region that totals £200million over the next 10-15 years which will have a transformative effect on the region and on Scotland as a whole.”
The region has a strong heritage and a bright future in key industries and sectors including engineering, food and drink, life sciences, healthcare, tourism, energy, creative industries, financial services, and digital and multimedia technologies.
This November, that future will be in the spotlight when Dundee’s Caird Hall hosts the Scottish Apprenticeship Awards 2019, bringing together apprentices and their employers from across Scotland.
Eugene Gallanagh, Senior Director of Enabling Services at SDS, said: “Increasing opportunities for people across the Tay Cities Region means helping them develop the skills to access high-quality jobs in the key and growth sectors that drive the regional economy.
“That involves enhancing careers information, advice and guidance for people of all ages, accelerating the development of work based learning, including Foundation Apprenticeships, and increasing training and learning provision for people at all stages of their career.
“The region already has a global reputation in sectors ranging from life sciences to tourism to creative and digital, and this plan will help ensure that more people have the in-demand skills needed to share in that success.”
Ellis Watson, Chair of the Tay Cities Enterprise Forum, offered his backing to the plan.
He said: “We’re excited by this plan. The good thing about this region is that private and public sectors can work very effectively together as ‘team Tayside’ and deliver effective, common sense initiatives like this one.”
Publication of the plan was also welcomed by Gordon Mackintosh, General Manager of the Carnoustie Golf Hotel and Spa.
He said: “People are at the heart of the hospitality industry, and in common with every other industry, we are competing to attract and retain the very best people to help us achieve our business goals.
“In what is a very competitive marketplace, investing in skills, training and workforce development is essential to ensure our team is ready and prepared to deliver consistent and correct levels of product and service to our customers.”
The plan is available for download at sds.co.uk/publications-statistics
The Tay Cities Deal is a partnership between local, Scottish and UK governments and the private, academic and voluntary sectors which seeks to create a smarter and fairer Angus, Dundee, Fife and Perth & Kinross under the headings Inclusive Tay; Innovative Tay; International Tay; Connected Tay and An Empowered Tay.
In total, the 25 projects and programmes submitted require investment of £700 million of which £300 million over 10 to 15 years is being put in by the UK Government, Scottish Government and their agencies, subject to final approval of robust business cases.
If every project and programme set out in the submission is funded and delivered, up to 6,000 job opportunities could be created across the tourism, food and drink, creative industries, eco innovation, digital, decommissioning, engineering, biomedical and health and care sectors.