Employer Ownership of Skills

The Skills Funding Agency, Department for Business, Innovation & Skills and UK Commission for Employment and Skills provided funding to the Greater Manchester area, through the Employer Ownership of Skills (EOS) programme and the Growth Innovation Fund (GIF).

The EOS programme was designed to test a more employer-centric view of the design and provision of training and the development of workforce skills, while the GIF funding focused on both the stimulation and maintenance of employers pursuing innovative skills development strategies.

A total of £11m was invested in testing a new employer-led skills system in Greater Manchester, designed to aid employers by investing in the skills that they needed, rather than simply relying on what the market provided.

The pilot agreed to deliver 1,843 training outputs, with the following composition: 

  • 410 16- to 18-year-old apprenticeships

  • 763 19+ apprenticeships

  • 670 19+ other qualifications

This activity was delivered through the Chamber, aggregating employer demand via the route of new sector-specific Employer Skills Groups. These supported the development of a system that opened new markets for work-based learning and encouraged training providers and further education colleges to work more closely with employers in new sectors. Overall, more than 350 companies benefited from participation in the programme in terms of training and skills development.

Find out more about the EOS project here.