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Seòmar agus comataidhean

Question ref. S6W-05240
Asked by: Daniel Johnson, Edinburgh Southern, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 20 December 2021

Question

To ask the Scottish Government what steps it is taking to meet the needs of an evolving labour market by (a) promoting employer business models that commit to investing in evidence-based human resources development and (b) ensuring that employability programmes focus on developing skills and providing quality work.

Current status: Answered by Richard Lochhead on 11 January 2022


Answer

(a) The Scottish Government is taking effective steps to meet the needs of an evolving labour market by promoting employer business models that commit to investing in evidence-based human resources development.

In September 2021, the Scottish Government established a short-life Business Purpose Commission for Scotland, to promote more purposeful businesses and better corporate governance. The Commission is tasked with examining issues related to that agenda, which includes business models, improving understanding of purpose as a way of retaining and attracting talent, and developing recommendations for how more purposeful businesses can be supported in Scotland. The Commission is currently in evidence gathering stage, with hundreds of businesses having already provided evidence via the business purpose question included in the Quarterly Fraser of Allander Scottish Business Monitor (Q3) and the Commission's call for evidence, which closed on 10 December 2021. Thematic workshops are also scheduled to take place in January 2022, to gather further evidence.

(b) The Scottish Government is likewise taking effective steps to meet the needs of an evolving labour market by ensuring that employability programmes focus on developing skills and providing quality work.

Through No One Left Behind, we are working with partners to implement an approach to employability that is person-centred, flexible and responsive to local labour market needs. We are working collaboratively across sectors to ensure our services contribute to tackling poverty and inequalities, and that people who want help to find and remain in work have access to the help and support they need. Our flagship employability service, Fair Start Scotland has supported over 13,000 people into work since launching in April 2018. We continue to focus on improving our services for those further from the labour market, offering 12-18 months of pre-employment support and a further 12 months of in-work support for participants and their employers to encourage sustained employment.

Unemployed individuals can also currently access key skills provision to support their return to work which is targeted at areas of growth or labour market and skills shortages. This includes the National Transition Training Fund for those aged 25 and over and – where applicable, Individual Training Accounts.

The ambition of the Young Person’s Guarantee is that every person aged between 16 and 24 will have the opportunity to study; take up an apprenticeship, job or work experience; or participate in formal volunteering. There are now 382 employers signed up to the Young Person's Guarantee, generating in excess of 7,400 additional opportunities. In 2020-22, we have provided additional funding of up to £130m with the aim of supporting over 24,000 new and enhanced employment, training and educational opportunities for young people, with a particular focus on supporting those who face additional challenges in participating in the labour market. A further £45m will be invested in 2022-23. Local Authority Employer Recruitment Incentives (ERIs) also remain in place to support young people into employment, including apprenticeships, particularly individuals who experience difficulties accessing the labour market.