The third year of the third decade of the 21st century promises to be a skills journey unlike any other. The economic recovery, the fourth industrial revolution and the race to zero all represent major opportunities as well as significant challenges. If we ‘get it right’ from a skills perspective, then the future for our region will be founded on a resilient and agile workforce, a wider and deeper talent pool, higher performing organisations, better jobs closer to home and greater prosperity in every community.
The Venture Skills & Talent Hub was created to help build and nurture that future across the CCR. We’re here to help employers attract and develop the talent they need, to support people in achieving their vocational ambitions – and to collaborate with the wider skills community in delivering the very best talent development for our region. 2022 is just the start of that journey – and these are the Big Five factors that will shape our progress over the next 12 months ….
It’s about Skilling & Reskilling & Upskilling & ….
We’re rightly proud of the Venture Graduate Programme. It’s already helped a multitude of employers in many different sectors successfully identify and hire the graduate talent that’s right for them; and with the first graduate programme of 2022 already being planned, it looks like we’ll be posting a record number of employers and graduates being matched in the next cohort. But this year’s emerging graduate, apprentice and trainee talent will account for less than 5% of our employee base – and we know that the reskilling and upskilling of current employees will be a critical part of CCR’s future human capital pipeline.
According to the OECD, we’re in an economic cycle where 20% of all current jobs in the UK will have disappeared forever by the end of 2025; and where 40% of those roles remaining will have been ‘significantly impacted’ by Artificial Intelligence or Automation. So the next 12-16 business quarters will see one of the biggest periods of reskilling and upskilling ever witnessed. Venture will be working with employers, schools, colleges, universities and skills partners to develop and deliver the programmes and refine the framework required for a world of lifelong learning and continual reskilling.
One Size Doesn’t Fit Anyone
And perhaps it never did. Today’s skills shortages, workplace disengagement and even the so-called ‘Great Resignation’ are symptomatic of a disconnect between the opportunities available and the core motivations of people. It’s up to us as skills providers and employers to engage with the talent and potential that resides in everyone. Being inclusive and being inspirational – connecting with hearts and minds in all talent communities – is the first step to building the skills we need for our region.
Venture will be supporting an inclusive range of training programmes throughout 2022 and beyond, reflecting the different learning experiences needed by different people. Right now, we offer game-changers such as the Young Innovators Programme, which is designed to give young inventors and entrepreneurs from all backgrounds the chance to realise their hopes, dreams and ambitions – overcoming the perception that being young can be an obstacle to success. This more personalised approach, tailored to the needs of the individual, is a central pillar of skilling for the future.
Collaborations are Key
Collaborations are critical to optimising every skills opportunity in our region. That spirit of co-production has seen four colleges in our region (Bridgend College, Cardiff High School, Cardiff & Vale College and Coleg Gwent) win ‘Gold’ awards as leading practitioners of the UK’s national NCSC CyberFirst programmes – and that belief in win-win collaboration is a key thread in the Venture philosophy.
Venture’s funding of the unique Cyber Masters Programme is a reflection of our approach: supporting the pioneering partnership between Cardiff University and PwC that’s producing expert, employment-ready cyber security professionals for one of our most valuable scarce-skill sectors. Likewise, our Women in Innovation programme (together with the Young Innovatorsprogramme) is a co-funded partnership with Innovate UK. The Venture vision? To create ‘best-in-class’ skills programmes by bringing together the experience and knowledge of true experts – giving our region the competitive edge in a world where even small margins in knowledge can make a critical difference.
Training & Skills are now part of ‘The Deal’
In this age of skill shortages, any employer that offers the ‘right’ Learning & Development will have the edge in being able to attract and retain the best talent – and continually develop those employees for the challenges of a changing world. At Venture, we view part of our role as working with employers to help them achieve that ‘employer brand’ – developing their employee loyalty as well as their employee expertise. 2022 will see us talking to employers in our region about the knowledge and competencies they need in their organisation – helping them develop their ‘employer promise’ as well as their talent pipelines.
That employment promise is two-way, of course – and we’re here to help potential employees to improve their own personals brands too: by giving them the skills and confidence to ‘sell’ themselves to the employers who are right for them.
It’s In Our Hands
We can’t predict the future. But we can create it. Investing in the innovative and the brave will distinguish the skills programmes Venture carries to our region – our involvement in the INFUSE public sector programmes being a prime example of creating something special using our unique CCR DNA. The INFUSE programme is a collaboration between CCR, Cardiff University, Y Lab and Monmouthshire County Council – empowering all 10 local authorities who make up our region to access fresh skills, novel methodologies and new tools, enabling them to continually improve their capacity and capability to innovate.
We’re building on strong foundations. Our region has already established the CCR Regional Skills Partnership and worked with Nesta to create the Future Ready Skills framework. Venture is here to complement these programmes and initiatives – adding momentum and bringing further focus to meet the needs of employers and learners throughout Southeast Wales.
2022 is already being viewed by many as a landmark year for skilling and training the talent in our region – and the team here at Venture will be playing our part in both delivering to the need and informing the wider debate.
Week by week, we’ll be bringing you the latest news and expert insights for employers, people looking to learn new skills – and the wider skills community.
We’re here for you, wherever you are on the journey …