Apprenticeships are never far from the news at the moment as businesses continue to adapt to the introduction of the new Levy.
Cutting through a lot of noise, I was interested to hear the Skills Minister, Anne Milton, on Radio 4’s Moneybox programme earlier in the week, talking about the importance of using the Levy for existing staff, including managers. She made a very clear case for businesses investing their Levy budgets in existing talent, and not just for early careers.
She said: “On the business of upskilling existing employees, I would say one thing: if you look at productivity, one of the biggest drivers of productivity is highly trained senior executives and managers. Upskilling existing staff is actually quite important.”
That’s very much our view at Corndel, and the argument I make to a lot of businesses I’m helping. There hasn’t always been a good record of investment in management in the UK, and it is very plausible that this plays a significant part in our long-standing productivity gap compared to other G7 countries. Last year, the Deputy Governor of the Bank of England, Andy Haldane, made a very thought-provoking speech exploring exactly this issue.
Particularly for businesses and industries where there hasn’t always been an available budget or rigorous programmes for developing managers, the Levy gives a unique opportunity to right past wrongs. Good management is an answer to so many business challenges: capacity management, staff utilisation, staff turnover, performance management, morale, talent development… the list goes on. We’re proud of making a real difference in the businesses we support.