An effective skills system is critical to developing a productive workforce, which is a key driver of economic growth. For a skills system to be effective it must be genuinely demand-led, responding to the evolving needs of businesses of all types and sizes.
The government spends more than £4 billion a year on adult skills provision in England, with £550 million of this in London alone. In this time of squeezed budgets and slow economic growth, it is critical that this investment generates the best possible return. The system is, however, not working as effectively as it should. The employment rate in London lags behind the UK average, and employers attribute 24 per cent of vacancies in the capital to skills shortages, which have a negative impact on performance and growth.
London needs more influence over the skills system in order to align provision with the needs of the capital’s businesses and communities across functional economic areas. Groups of boroughs are best-placed to lead this approach, working with London’s LEP.
Read more about London's skills challenge in our report on this page.