Wednesday, May 18, 2016

News: Rotherham hosts Skills Summit

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More than 200 businesses are set to attend the Sheffield City Region's first official Skills Summit, taking place this week at the New York Stadium in Rotherham.

Businesses are taking part in this free event to find out how taking on an apprentice can help their business, understand the support available to businesses and learn about some of the real skills success stories in the Sheffield City Region.

Hosted by BBC Home Editor, Mark Easton, businesses will hear from keynote speakers Nick Boles MP, Minister of State for Skills, and Sir Nigel Knowles, Chair of the Sheffield City Region LEP. A host of other notable national and local decision makers will also address attendees on how the Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) is working with employers to access the skills they need to increase their market position.

Skills minister, Nick Boles said: "Skilled people are the lifeblood of a strong economy. That's why we are working in partnership with employers to ensure young people have the skills businesses need to grow and compete.

"The Sheffield City Region's economy was built by small businesses. Events like the Skills Summit offer businesses the opportunity to work with the City Region to ensure that any investment meets the real needs of the business community."

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Sir Nigel Knowles, chair of the Sheffield City Region LEP, added: "The Sheffield City Region provides a straight-forward and reliable business environment with a sensible regulatory system that champions innovation and creativity. This business-minded culture comes from our track record of working together to grow our businesses and the local economy, and to make the region an even better place to live.

"In order to capitalise on this innovation we need to continually invest in the development of skills at all levels of the workforce, from apprentices to senior managers. The Skills Summit will enable businesses to discover how we intend to achieve this goal and ensure that the city region realises its ambitious targets."

The Skills Summit will provide businesses the opportunity to find out how local companies can influence and benefit from the Sheffield City Region's strategy of putting businesses at the heart of the decision-making process. The Summit follows last month's launch of the £17m Skills Bank which is working with local businesses to identify how new skills can help them to grow and better connect them to high quality training providers.

An expert panel has been assembled to join the event and take part in a high-level discussion around the opportunities offered and challenges posed to Sheffield City Region by devolution. The panel for the event on May 19 consists of:

- Jo Miller, chief executive of Doncaster Council
- Julie Kenny, Sheffield City Region LEP board member and chair and chief executive of Pyronix
- David Cragg CBE, deputy chairman of WorldSkills UK
- Michael Davis, managing director of Ecorys
- David Hughes, chief executive of Learning and Work Institute

Sheffield City Region Skills Bank website

Images: RUFC

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