Improving Employability Skills, Enriching Our Economy: Case Study Report

National Foundation for Educational Research, London Councils, South East Strategic Leaders, The London Enterprise Panel

16 March 2015

Also see: Summary report | 'Connect card' for schools, colleges and SMEs

This report has been produced by four organisations – the National Foundation for Educational Research, South East Strategic Leaders, London Councils and the London Enterprise Panel. It is based on research into how secondary schools, colleges, SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) and micro-businesses in London and the South East work together to improve young people's employability skills and successful transition into work. This report contains the case studies from the research, and should be read alongside the summary report which contains the research findings. NFER has also produced a 'connect card' designed to help education organisations and businesses to engage with each other more effectively and stimulate discussion.

Key Findings

  • Schools and colleges cannot produce 'work-ready' employees alone without input from employers such as SMEs
  • Having a single line of communication (face-to-face where possible) helps SMEs to understand the importance of the role of a school or and break down barriers. A dedicated careers coordinator is invaluable for brokering long-term connections
  • SMEs should be involved with the content of careers information
  • Schools and colleges need to show that employers can get involved and can offer flexible methods of engagement such as providing apprenticeships or work placements
  • Relationships between education organisations and businesses need to be driven by schools and colleges who need to learn how to 'sell' themselves.
Read the report Read the article