Pilot project to boost small business skills

Small businesses across the Liverpool city region get access to a pilot project to boost the skills of their workforce by creating new apprenticeships

Professionals, meeting, work, laptops
SkillsBoost will see small firms create apprenticeship or skills such as digital


Small businesses across the Liverpool city region will be able to boost the skills base of their workforce by creating new apprenticeships.

A new support service, the SkillsBoost project, will focus on supporting businesses that haven’t taken on an apprentice in the last two years. These will cover key sectors such as digital, manufacturing, social care and construction.

Small employers are already entitled to a 95% discount on the cost of an apprenticeship. However they require significant practical support to successfully navigate the apprenticeship system.

Supported by the Department for Education, the SkillsBoost pilot will be free for businesses to access. It will be delivered by the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR).

It builds on the success of its London-based apprenticeship creation project the London Progression Collaboration. 

Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram said: “For far too long, too many people in our area have been held back from fulfilling their true potential – not by a lack of talent but a lack of opportunity. Thanks to devolution, we’re putting that right.

READ MORE: Everton charity launches Digital Skills Lab

“Over the last five years, we’ve created more than 10,000 jobs and 7,000 apprenticeships through programmes like my Young Person’s Guarantee. This promises a job, apprenticeship or training opportunity to every young person in our area out of work for more than six months.

“We’ve launched Be More, my award-winning UCAS-style career and apprenticeship portal, which has recently been refreshed into a new AI-powered app. And we’ve helped dozens of businesses sign up to my Fair Employment Charter.

“I’m looking forward to seeing how the SkillsBoost programme can help us to build on the progress we’ve made so far and make an even bigger difference to young people’s lives.”

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