Mayor unveils new skills business partnership

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has unveiled a new group of leading figures from across the capital’s businesses who will help him shape London’s skill system to better the needs of the capital’s employers.

His new Skills for Londoners Business Partnership brings together representatives from a range of industries to play an active role in informing future skills provision in London. It will work with the Mayor to help London’s employers access the skills they need today and in the future.

The Partnership will also advise the Mayor on how skills and education provision can help businesses access talent, particularly in response to a range of challenges including Brexit and increasing automation. 

The Mayor will also publish a new Skills and Employment Vision later this year, which will be closely linked to his Local Industrial Strategy (which is due to be published at the same time).

The Business Partnership will play an essential role in shaping both documents, which will set out the next steps for delivering on the Mayor’s priorities, new policies to address emerging challenges, and will make the case for more funding to be devolved to London.

The Mayor believes a city-wide skills system that is responsive to the needs of London’s economy is crucial to meeting the needs of London’s employers and residents. The need for such a system has been made particularly acute given Brexit and the government’s recent Immigration White Paper, both of which risk undermining London’s growth and access to a future pipeline of talent from Europe and around the world.

The Partnership – which met at City Hall for the first time this week – aims to: 

  • improve London’s skills system to better meet the needs of employers, businesses and the London economy
  • increase skills investment and workforce development in London’s industries to meet the demands of the global economy
  • improve information and data on skills needs from employers and ensure the most accurate/reliable data is used to inform skills provision in London

 
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said:In June 2018, my Skills for Londoners strategy laid out my ambition to create a city for all Londoners, in which everyone can access the skills they need to succeed in a thriving economy. “Involving London’s employers and businesses to meet this ambition is at the heart of this: today I’m delighted to announce my new Skills for Londoners Business Partnership, made up of leading figures from businesses of all sizes and sectors, who share my passion for supporting London’s talent. I look forward to working with them as they play a central role in our efforts to maintain London’s global position as a great place to work, invest and grow a business.”

Deputy Mayor for Business and Chair of the Business Partnership, Rajesh Agrawal, said:It is an honour to chair the Skills for Londoners Business Partnership and to be working with such exceptional business representatives. Our first meeting marks an important step in bringing London’s employers and businesses together, not just to gain a better understanding of the challenges, but also to act collectively to create a diverse and skilled workforce fit for the future.”

Film and TV Executive at Film London, Nahrein Kemp, said:I am really looking forward to working with the Mayor and his team on skills challenges facing London.  London is one of the most diverse cities in the world and the Mayor’s skills policies and programmes provide an excellent opportunity to influence change and foster collaboration across employers, skills providers and Londoners themselves.” 

Director of People Strategy, Barts Health NHS Trust, Aurea Jones, said:I welcome the establishment of the Mayor of London’s Skills for Londoners Business Partnership and am pleased to be able to bring the wealth of experience that the NHS has as a major employer to the table.  The Business Partnership will begin a collaborative exchange of knowledge and innovation between employers, particularly as we grapple with the difficult task of navigating the impact of Brexit and the pressures this will place on London’s current and future workforce.

Founder and Chief Operating Officer of MarketOrders, Sukhi Jutla, said:I am pleased to be a part of the Mayor’s Skills for Londoners Business Partnership. This is great initiative to support London’s employers, including SMEs and micro-businesses, to access the talent and skills they need.

Founder of Optimity, Anthony Impey MBE, said:I welcome the Mayor’s commitment to creating a skills offer that works for both Londoners and employers. I look forward to working with the Partnership to strengthen London’s apprenticeships offer, building skills for London’s future.

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