The following was published by Education and Employers.
We are publishing a new report entitled ‘The Value of Volunteering – volunteering in education and productivity in work’.
The report will be launched at a webinar on the 8th January. Register now.
Education Volunteering – ‘one of the best investments employers can make’
The new research, in collaboration with CIPD, reveals the positive value that organisations can realise by supporting their staff to undertake volunteering in the UK’s schools and colleges.
The report’s findings show significant benefits of educational volunteering, including improved communication and influencing skills; an improved sense of mission and loyalty at work; and greater staff productivity. These organisational benefits sit alongside the personal benefits realised by individuals themselves, with evidence showing volunteering can improve staff well-being.
And the volunteers surveyed felt that they made a difference to young people. This tallies with research Education and Employers has done with young people over the last ten years which shows that encounters with volunteers from the world of work helps to: Improve academic attainment at GCSE, Increase young people’s earning potential; Broaden young peoples’ horizons and raise their aspirations; Excite children about subjects, increasing motivation, confidence and attitude to learning; Challenge gender and social stereotypes; and reduce the likelihood of young people becoming NEET.
The webinar will begin with the unveiling of the main findings, and will be followed by a panel Q&A session with contributions from:
Peter Cheese – Chief Executive of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development
Justin Placide – Assistant Director – Business, Investment & Growth at the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy and Co-Chair of the Civil Service Race Forum
Karen Giles – Headteacher of Barham Primary School and Education and Employers’ Trustee
Natasha Davies – National Senior Programme Lead – Volunteering at Health Education England
We hope you can join us for this special event at the start of the New Year – which has got to be better than this one!
The online libraryprovides a comprehensive repository of the different and effective approaches to employer engagement and careers education. It brings together the latest thinking with selected research published over the past 40 years.
Free to access and searchable by keyword, it features summaries of a wide range of studies with abstracts and links to the full reports. Over the last decade the library has become a valuable asset for researchers, academics and policy makers. With research articles and reports from leading figures and education bodies, visitors can examine issues such as employer-led learning, youth employment, career related learning in primary schools, and social mobility, as well as information on gender, ethnicity, and specific subject study such as STEM.
The main library is complemented by an extensive on-line video collection and a physical library. The video collection comprises over 150 videos of researchers discussing their work and its implications for policy and practice, together with conference presentations and seminars.
The physical library located in the Charity’s offices just off Fleet Street, London contains many out-of-print reports, including material from the former Centre for Education and Industry at the University of Warwick, and is accessible by appointment.
The library plays an important role in shaping future direction in the field and driving positive change, explains Dr Anthony Mann, Senior Policy Analyst (Education and Skills) at the OECD:
“To understand the impacts of employer engagement in education on young people, employers and society and the characteristics of its most effective and equitable provision, it is essential to draw on high quality research and important to understand how schools and employers have sought to work together in the past.”
“Globally, I am aware of no better resource for accessing high quality materials than the Education and Employers library. Very well catalogued, it an essential resource for anyone interested in ensuring that today’s policy and practice is undertaken in light of existing knowledge.”
Chris James, Emeritus Professor of Educational Leadership and Management at the University of Bath reflects on the value of the Research Library:
First things first, Education and Employers has a crucial role in connecting the worlds of education and employment. The links between those two worlds are very significant for society generally, and for young people in schools and colleges, the link between those two worlds is central to their future lives.
It’s easy to develop ideas and conclusions about the relationship between those two worlds on the basis of personal experience and anecdotal evidence. Important though those ideas are, insights from high quality research provide a much more secure and robust base on which to develop theory, make policy and to determine the best actions in practice. Having a secure research-based foundation on which to build thinking about the relationship between education and employment is essential. It informs and underpins high quality policymaking and practice. That’s why the Education and Employers research resources are so important. They provide that essential secure research-based foundation which serious researchers, policymakers and practitioners require. Developed over 10 years, the collection is an invaluable resource for all those who have a serious interest in employee engagement in education, youth employment, education pathways, careers education and all those places where the worlds of education and employment interact.
The library charts developments in and changing attitudes to employee engagement in education and with articles covering a very broad range of issues including employer-led learning, the involvement of the world of work in school governing, careers education in primary schools and social mobility. Very usefully, the research is ‘open access’ – those with an interest in research reports and articles are free to access, which reflects Education and Employers values and charitable status.
The Education and Employers’ research collection has three sections, all of which inform a research-based understanding.
The research library provides succinct and clear summaries of over 200 significant research articles and reports from the last 40 years. Importantly, the articles have been selected on the basis of their academic quality and relevance to careers education and matters that connect the realms and employment and education. The way the library’s structured enables those using it to search by key words – very helpful as any (serious) researcher will tell you. The library gives the abstract and the link to the full report/article. It is a comprehensive collection comprising academic papers and wider research reports from leading research and education bodies including the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD); The UCL Institute of Education; The International Labour Market; World Economic Forum; the Edge Foundation; the Sutton Trust; the Department for Education; Social Mobility Foundation, King’s College, London; the Chartered Institute of Professional Development (CIPD); Universities UK; and importantly, reports of the Education and Employers own research.
The video library is a collection of over 150 videos where leading figures in the field talk about their research. This library also contains footage of conference presentations, symposia and seminars, which are often places where new ideas under development are shared and discussed. Many of these videos are particularly valuable for the way they bring research to life, give valuable summaries and syntheses different ideas.
Education and Employers research blogs are an important source of research information. They provide insights into ongoing research and issues that are emerging in the research world about research projects, and syntheses of ideas. This part of the library contains over 50 blogs. It is a unique collection.
In addition to these e-resources, Education and Employers has a large collection of ‘hard copies’ of research reports of various kinds. They welcome visitors to peruse the collection in person. Make sure you book before you go, though. Just contact the Education and Employers via firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a visit.
All those who have an academic research interest in careers education and the relationship between the spheres of education and employment – academics and masters and doctoral students – will find the research library particularly valuable. It’s so useful to have the key articles and report gathered in one easily accessible place. The videos and the blogs will also give them valuable insights.
Policymakers (those who develop government policy) and practitioners (those at the chalk face as it were) will find the resources in the video library the blogs of particular interest. They may also find the research library resources useful and stimulating. Drawing on the high-quality research reported in the various articles/reports will enhance the authority of their work
Importantly, all those using the resources, both the e-resources and the ‘hard-copy resources’ will find them to be focused, organized and accessible.
In developing the research library, Education and Employers have put together a significant resource for researchers, policymakers and practitioners. I would urge all those who have a serious interest in the interplay between the education world and the employment world to explore the library in depth – it will enhance the quality of their work.
Ofsted has published new research looking at subcontractors in the further education and skills sector.
New research by Ofsted finds that subcontractors in the further education and skills (FES) sector often have overall control of the day-to-day quality of a learner’s education and training. However, directly-funded providers do not always exert enough influence to manage the subcontracted provision well. For example, they might not have the necessary subject or industry expertise to review provision meaningfully.
The research also found that the current approach to inspection means that some subcontractors are visited more than once, while others are not visited at all.
While Ofsted is not funded to directly inspect subcontractors, the research proposes a more comprehensive and transparent approach to improve oversight.
The report, ‘Subcontracting in further education and skills’, recognises the acute economic challenges FES providers are facing as a result of COVID-19, as well as the broader decline in subcontracted provision over recent years. It explores what makes for high-quality FES provision delivered through subcontracting and asks how inspection and regulation might need to adapt as a result of a rapidly evolving landscape.
Ofsted is responsible for inspecting the quality of education offered by directly-funded FES providers, but inspectors do not report on all subcontracted provision. However, the inspectorate has increased its focus on subcontracting over the past 2 years, in response to concerns about the quality of some subcontractors.
Currently, Ofsted inspections give a rounded judgement of a directly- funded provider by sampling activities across the provision. The choice of subcontractors to sample is made within practical constraints, such as their location. These activities then inform the leadership and management judgement of the directly- funded provider and, where appropriate, the quality of education judgement.
The report suggests there are limitations to this approach and concludes that the oversight of subcontracted education could be improved by sampling more subcontracted provision. Therefore, Ofsted is seeking to make inspecting and reporting on subcontracted provision more comprehensive and transparent by:
working with the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) to improve access to timely and accurate data on the number and size of subcontracting arrangements held by a directly-funded provider
increasing awareness among inspectors of Ofsted’s available inspection resource, in order to investigate more subcontractors
changing the way evidence is recorded to systematically and consistently include information about all subcontractors visited
where appropriate, highlighting more subcontractors in inspection reports
In particular, more accurate data from the ESFA would allow Ofsted to arrange to visit subcontracted provision that was far away, because out-of-region resources could be factored into planning.
Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, Amanda Spielman, said:
The financial stresses of the COVID-19 pandemic and ESFA’s tighter regulations around subcontracting make this an important and timely report. Over the past two years we have increased our focus on the management of subcontracted provision. However, this new research has highlighted the importance of reviewing subcontractors within our current model.
We are open to exploring how we could directly inspect subcontractors in the future, but that would need significantly more financial resource and better data. So, for now we will continue to inspect subcontractors as part of our inspections of directly-funded providers. But I’m confident that the changes set out in today’s report will make our oversight more meaningful and transparent.
The report is based on visits to 14 subcontractors in November and December last year; focus groups with 38 inspectors; and desk-based analysis of inspection reports and evidence bases, as well as other publicly available data on subcontracting.
Anna West, deputy director for apprenticeship funding and approvals, said:
“Our goal is to introduce a more transparent and evidence-based system. I would like to thank everyone for taking part in the first consultation. We have taken on board your feedback to further improve our approach.“The refined model now being consulted on would be based on independent evidence, but also offer flexibility to employers to provide further information to ensure they receive appropriate levels of funding. I would like to urge as many people as possible who care about the future of apprenticeships to take part.”
The funding band system as a whole supports employers, helping more to benefit from apprenticeship levy funding by delivering value for money in the programme.
The Institute launched the project to develop a new approach in response to feedback that the existing system, based around employers gathering quotes for how much training costs and comparisons with existing standards and qualifications, was not transparent enough.
The first consultation set out our core model and asked for views on addressing differences in costs.
We were pleased to receive over 200 consultation responses. The majority indicated that the proposed model was simpler to understand and strengthened transparency.
We used feedback from respondents to develop a single approach that provides trailblazers with an early estimate of the maximum government funding level their apprenticeship stands to receive based on an automated “rates-based” model.
If a trailblazer considers this inappropriate, they can provide information to allow us to make a bespoke estimate of likely eligible costs.
The consultation will run for 6 weeks, closing at midnight on 6 October 2020. A series of supportive virtual roadshow events will also take place during this period.
HR directors expect 70% of their workforce will have flexible working once coronavirus restrictions are lifted, a 45% increase on current levels.
More than 13 million people across the UK plan to ask their employer for changes to their long-term working pattern, according to research from Direct Line Life.
HR is therefore already preparing to receive more flexible working requests once the pandemic has eased, with over two fifths (43%) of HR directors giving the option to work from home five days a week.
Cost of travel and being at work was a key reason behind changing working styles for around a third (31%) of people, as well as commuting time at 23%.
More than a quarter (28%) of those hoping for more long-term flexible working said they have demonstrated they can do this successfully during the pandemic, a sentiment no doubt shared up and down the country.
Spending more time with family and wanting to lead a healthier lifestyle was also cited as a key reason for the change.
One in six said they were concerned over pollution levels and 5% said they plan to spend more time exercising and becoming healthier.
Chloe Couper, business manager at Direct Line Life insurance, said coronavirus has changed the mindset of millions of workers in the UK.
She said: “Many people wouldn’t have considered their employer would accept a flexible working request, despite it being legal to make one but now companies and employees have become used to home working as the ‘new norm.’
“Going through such a serious pandemic will understandably make some people want to reassess their lives and priorities going forward. Protecting health and family are vital and it is great to see so many wish to spend more time doing both.”
Working from home two days a week was the most popular option when looking to carry on flexible working arrangements.
Given office space is a large cost for most businesses, the opportunity for more staff to work remotely may reduce overheads for organisations.
Research was collected by Opinium among a nationally representative sample of 2,002 UK adults in April and by Pure Profile of 100 UK HR directors.
Youth unemployment could top one million by the end of the year – highlighting the scale of the jobs crisis facing an entire generation of young people, a new report warns.
The Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) think tank estimated that an extra 620,000 people aged between 18 and 24 will be jobless by the end of the year, on top of the 410,000 already unemployed.
This will be the highest number of young people unemployed on record, surpassing the levels seen in the 2008-9 and 1990s recessions, said the report.
This level of youth unemployment should be a major cause for concern, according to the IPPR, as being out of work at an early age can cause serious “scarring effects” on people’s life chances including lower wages, increased risk of further unemployment and worse health into later life.
A £3bn government intervention was needed to ensure everyone under the age of 25 is in education, training, apprenticeship or a job, said the report.
Harry Quilter-Pinner, IPPR senior research fellow, said: “We face an unemployment crisis in the UK. Our analysis suggests youth unemployment could more than double by the end of the year. This would be a huge waste of talent and potential. It doesn’t have to be like this.
“That’s why we are calling on the government to step in to guarantee all young people either a funded place in education, an apprenticeship or a job.
“This will require the state to support businesses to take on young people, just as it has supported them to retain adults through the furlough scheme.”
A government spokesperson said: “We are doing everything we can to protect our economy and ensure there are options for young people, with the Opportunity Guarantee announced earlier this week ensuring every young person has a chance of an apprenticeship or in-work placement.
“Alongside our package of support for business, our nationwide network of Work Coaches are already matching jobseekers to new roles as we get Britain back working again. The National Careers Service is also providing help and advice to young people who have been furloughed, made redundant or had their exams cancelled.”
In March 2020, West Yorkshire agreed an ambitious devolution deal with the Government, which will see our region have a directly-elected mayor from May 2021.
The agreement, which is the biggest ever of its kind, unlocks more than £1.8 billion in investment to drive up living standards through better transport, improved skills and stronger businesses, while tackling the climate emergency. This means that West Yorkshire will have control of the £63m annual Adult Education Budget (AEB) for the area enabling us to align spending on skills more closely with the opportunities and needs in the local economy.
The main purpose of the AEB is to provide adults with the skills needed for entering and sustaining employment, an apprenticeship, a traineeship, or other further learning. The funding pays specifically for learning programmes (predominantly qualifications) and provides an element of learner support funding for those with learning difficulties and disabilities.
The AEB Strategy has been developed in order to ensure that we are ready to deliver the Adult Education Budget by 1 August 2021. The plan builds on our existing strategies and the needs of our area, providing a clear foundation upon which we can build the skills of people and businesses within West Yorkshire. The timescales set out by the Government mean that it is necessary to develop the plan prior to the election of the West Yorkshire Mayor.
Devolution of the Adult Education Budget will only proceed if the wider devolution deal is agreed and implemented. If you are interested in knowing more about the West Yorkshire devolution consultation, please
As part of our engagement activity and transparency around devolution across West Yorkshire we would like to invite you to provide feedback on the AEB Strategy via an online survey using the link below.
This survey will be open from 25 May to midnight on 12 July 2020.
Following the consultation period, the survey results will be analysed and your feedback will be considered in the development of the final AEB Strategy. This plan will be considered by the Combined Authority to ensure that we are able to meet the required timelines for the delivery of the devolved AEB for the 2021/22 academic year.
In the article we set out a new framework for career capital based on research with 36 business leaders who have recently undertaken a role transition within a UK construction business. We cluster these aspects of career capital under three categories: Knowing Self, Knowing How and Knowing Whom. These are illustrated in the figure above.
Our argument is that these are aspects that prove to be important to people’s careers. In the article we explore a range of different strategies that people can use to effectively develop and utilise their career capital as well as compensating for the gaps that they have in their career capital.
We hope that the article will be of interest to researcher and career theorists, but also to business leaders and organisational managers who wish to build individual and organisational career mobility. It may also be of interest to careers professionals who might find it helpful as a way of thinking about the elements that people need to identify and develop as part of their careers.
Over half (55%) said their industry as a whole can operate effectively based on remote work.
The LinkedIn study, which is run fortnightly, also showed that UK confidence about jobs, finances and careers sits at +13 on a scale of -100 to +100. This is more positive than negative, but only slightly.
From the data across April, it emerged that those working in the healthcare sector felt the most confident, at +24. They were particularly optimistic about their job security.
On the other hand, education professionals were among the least confident, sitting at a score of +10. They felt particularly low levels of confidence around progressing their career in the next year.
In terms of job-seeking, survey respondents felt generally pessimistic. When asked about their confidence in their ability to get or hold onto a job, the average score was -7 on the index for the week from 27 April to 3 May, down from -2 between 13 and 19 April.
Those working in sales were the most pessimistic, with 77% expecting the number of available jobs to fall in the next two weeks.
Martyn Dicker, director of people at Unicef UK, told HR magazine that it was unsurprising to see that two-thirds of UK workers believe that they are effective when working remotely.
In addition to technology’s ability to facilitate remote work, Dicker said: “I also believe that a key ingredient of workers feeling that they are effective, is their strong desire for it to work.
“We know that greater flexible working is desired by many, with the CIPD 2019 Job Quality Index stating that 68% of UK employees would like more flexibility. It’s worth noting that this is just 2% more than the 66% believing that they are effective in the LinkedIn study.
“The UK fares particularly poorly when it comes to job demands interfering with family life, so maybe this forced home working experiment will provide UK employers the impetus to drive change and embrace more flexible working.”
LinkedIn’s study also showed that optimism about company futures was low.
The study found that only 22% of those at director level or above thought their company would be better off in the next six months, with 45% saying they thought it would be worse off.
Among those in non-management roles, 18% believed their firms would be better off and 37% thought they would be worse off.
Emma Jayne, area director of people and culture at the Dorchester Collection, said: “The future is so uncertain right now and it is at the forefront of people’s minds constantly I’m sure.
“As employers it’s important that we are offering regular, clear and honest communication on the situation our businesses are in and if we can offer reassurance then that should be the very first thing that we are doing.
“It’s a rollercoaster ride of emotions at the moment and HR’s most critical role right now is to take care of the mental wellbeing of their people.
“The results around the outlook for the next six months I think are very realistic. Despite the government encouraging a return to work to boost the economy, the reality is the economy is going to take a long time to recover from COVID-19.”
Finally, the index found that 49% of UK workers plan to increase the time they’re spending on online learning in the next two weeks, corroborating other recent studies on the upskilling trend.
Nearly half (48%) said they hoped this learning would advance their career path, while 47% wanted to learn something unrelated to work.
A third (32%) were interested in improving their emotional wellbeing through online learning, while 30% wanted to contribute to society and help others.
Jayne added: “Online learning is such a gift at the moment. We are all in our homes with some time on our hands which is very different from the fast pace of life that used to be’ normal’.
“I am certain we will see an upswing in a more joined up and kinder society when we come out of this pandemic, I wonder if people will be inspired by the amazing work of the NHS and other services and they will see an upturn in people wanting to pursue a career in those fields.”
The LinkedIn Workforce Confidence Index surveys around 1,000 UK LinkedIn members in each wave.
We’ve all been unable to escape the word ‘furlough’ over the past few weeks – a term many of us were not even familiar with before this crisis. Simply put, the government’s furlough scheme guarantees employees who have stopped working during the coronavirus pandemic 80% of their wage (with exceptions).
Fortunately, only 30% of candidates who responded to our survey said that they have been furloughed.
The Financial Times reported at the start of April that up to half of companies in the UK were furloughing their staff (https://www.ft.com/content/8e2…85-a9bf-78deeb94bc80), so the training sector appears to be more active than other industries, with most staff still working, albeit remotely.
53% of staff in the sector who have been furloughed agreed with the decision to furlough them, acknowledging that it would be impossible for them to perform their role remotely. In terms of training staff, there are of course some fields in which trainers are unable to deliver remotely, namely the more ‘hands on’ qualifications such as hairdressing and construction.
A further 14% of furloughed candidates, when asked if they felt it was necessary for them to be furloughed, selected ‘other’ and offered comments such as ‘learners [being] unavailable’ due to their own work being disrupted, ‘client demand lowered and there were many cancellations’, and delivering remotely being ‘impossible with a young child’. In addition to simply whether a qualification can be delivered remotely or not, there are a wealth of other factors that have been considered when the decision has been made to furlough or not.
Indeed, only one third of those that told us they have been furloughed described themselves as trainers, with the majority of furloughed employees identifying themselves as management or admin staff. With apprenticeships still continuing where possible, and apprentices still being able to continue with their qualification if they have been furloughed themselves, for most training staff there is still work available, and happily, for many training providers furlough is a last resort.
*The survey was conducted between 6th and 10th April 2020. The survey had 1,598 responses.*