Leeds City Region: towards a NEET-free city

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1 urbact ii capitalisation, april 2015 case study Leeds City Region: towards a NEET-free city urbact ii

2 Leeds City Region: towards a NEET-free city, URBACT II Capitalisation, April 2015 Published by URBACT 5, Rue Pleyel, Saint Denis, France Author Mike Campbell Graphic design and layout Christos Tsoleridis (Oxhouse design studio), Thessaloniki, Greece 2015 URBACT II programme

3 urbact ii capitalisation, april 2015 case study Leeds City Region: towards a NEET-free city

4 Foreword This case study is part of a bigger capitalisation initiative set by the URBACT programme for with the objective to present to cities local good practices about: New urban economies Jobs for young people in cities Social innovation in cities Sustainable regeneration in urban areas These four topics have been explored by four URBACT working groups (workstreams), composed of multidisciplinary stakeholders across Europe such as urban practitioners and experts from URBACT, representatives from European universities, European programmes and international organisations working on these issues. The case study on Leeds City Region (UK) is one of the concrete results of the URBACT workstream Job generation for a jobless generation, after collection of data, a study visit, and interviews with local stakeholders. It explores the practice the city put in place to boost its local economy, actions implemented, achievements and challenges, success factors, and conditions for transfer to other cities. The first part of the case study summarises the key points of the practice, while the second part (analytical template) provides more details for those interested in transferring the practice to their local context. We hope this shall be an inspiration for you and your city! The URBACT Secretariat

5 CONTENTS Article on the case study of Leeds Analytical template of the case study Annex

6 job generation for a jobless generation Leeds City Region: Towards a NEET-Free City By Professor Mike Campbell* Leeds City Region (LCR) is in Yorkshire, England and has a population of 3 million people 1.9 million of working age and 1.4 million people in employment. The economy is worth 56 bn or 5% of the whole UK economy. It is the largest city region in the UK outside London. Youth unemployment (16 24 year olds) stands at 47,500 on the International Labour Organisation (ILO) measure, accounting for around 40% of all unemployment and a rate of 19.6%. Figure 1. Leeds City Region economy and map Leeds City Region Economy UK s largest city region economy outside London 55 bn economy 5% out of England s total economic output; bigger than 9 EU countries Population of 3 million; workforce of 1.4 m largest and fastest growing in the North 106,000 businesses UK s largest manufacturing centre with 139,000 jobs Largest regional financial and professional services sector 8 HELs; 14 FE colleges Source: Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership * Professor Mike Campbell is an independent labour market expert 04 urbact ii capitalisation

7 case study Population of 3 milion DEMOGRAPHICS & WORKFORCE SKILLS & EDUCATION 8 Higher education institutions and 14 further education colleges Figure 2. Leeds economical assets 1.9 MILLION Working age population growing faster than the national average 36% of research is world-class / 10% world-leading 1.4 milion employees Largest city region economy outside London ECONOMY Source: Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership All jobs lost during the recession recovered 55 BILLION Economic output 5% of England s total L eeds City Region enterprise partnership (LEP1) has developed an integrated suite of measures to increase youth employment. Based on an evidencebased approach and with high levels of employer engagement, this is a pretty unique package and one that other cities can learn from. The measures are designed to complement and add value to national programmes. They provide an interesting set of practices, and lessons, which should be of interest to other cities across the European Union. The ambition is outstanding to secure a NEET2 free city region, with more and better jobs, and the skilled and flexible workforce to sustain them. No young people without a job, education or training, better quality jobs and the skills needed to acquire them. This clear, exciting message is used to galvanise employers and other stakeholders in pursuit of the ambition. The more specific short term objective is to provide a range of opportunities to young people, 1 Local Enterprise Partnerships are voluntary partnerships between local authorities, businesses and other stakeholders set up in 2011 by the UK Government to help determine local economic priorities and lead economic growth and job creation within the local area. 2 NEET = Not in Employment, Education or Training BUSINESS 106,000 business 139,000 manufacturing jobs, more than anywhere else in the country CONNECTIVITY Well-located at the centre of the UK strategic road & rail network within an hour s drive of 7 milion people Largest UK financial centre outside London 1/6 At the heart of the nation s electricity network, generating 1/6 of UK power so as to reduce youth unemployment and help secure economic growth. An overarching employer engagement campaign ( five three one ) and a complementary suite of linked activities are embedded within an overall strategic plan: Five three one The foundation stone of action is the five three one campaign. This overarching employer engagement campaign aims to act as a net to catch employers who subsequently can be engaged in the other activities. The emphasis is on engaging SMEs (which comprise over 99% of the city region s firms and which are usually disengaged from public programmes) and providing opportunities to young people. The basic premise is that there are 5 things employers can do (invest in skills, mentor a budding entrepreneur, build links with education providers, offer work placements to unemployed young people, and provide apprenticeships), 3 reasons to do it (help someone reach their potential, their business will benefit, the local economy in which they do business will grow) and 1 positive outcome (our economy will grow). It is an outward facing campaign which, unlike some public support programmes, makes the case for action, seeks to deepen relationships on a one by one basis, with the offer of hassle-free support for businesses. A campaign, partly a conversation and a brokerage service, it asks employers to get involved. The overall aim is to win the hearts and minds of employers, recognising that changes to behaviour are more sustainable through building relationships rather than on-off transactional links. Over 380 companies are now involved, with an ultimate target of 1,000. Sitting within this overarching campaign, the measures which enable young people to be available to employers are: urbact ii capitalisation 05

8 job generation for a jobless generation Figure 3. Leeds City Region Plan on a page Source: Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership Headstart Headstart aims to support 3,000 young people who have been unemployed for more than 6 months and has a budget of around 5 million. It has a number of innovative elements. It provides wrap around support for 6 months, to both individuals and employers, including interview guarantees, in-work mentoring and a wage incentive for employers. Businesses were involved in the design of the employer-based training element. The reassurance provided by mentors, to both young people and employers, is key to the programme s success. Two youth ambassadors from the target group have been employed as apprentices to work with employers to sell the benefits of Headstart, in part through the use of social media (including a YouTube Video, a twitter account KirkleesBiz] and a Facebook page [EmployThe Future]). The youth ambassadors, as part of their work, have also produced a range of marketing materials to be made available to employers. An employment agency pilot, engaging private agencies, has been established to influence opinion amongst private recruitment agencies who are very active in the youth recruitment market and to promote young people as a positive contribution to business. These agencies are particularly active in high labour turnover sectors with strong jobs demand even in weak labour market conditions. Many operate in sectors employing large numbers of young people such as hospitality. From a young person perspective, engagement with these agencies can have a more positive vibe than with the public employment service which is often associated with benefit sanctions and other punitive action. Apprenticeship Hub and Training Agency The creation of an Apprenticeship Hub provides a central point of contact offering free independent and co-ordinated apprenticeship advice and support specifically for SMEs. It aims to nearly double the proportion of employers offering apprenticeships from 12% to 20% which would mean 7,500 new employers and 15,000 new apprenticeships being created within 4 years. For those SMEs who are not yet apprentice ready, an Apprentice Training Agency (ATA) has been established to create 2,500 apprenticeships over 3 years and to provide incentives to SMEs to directly employ apprentices leaving the ATA. A Devolved Youth Contract This element builds on the national youth contract (a national scheme to help unemployed people aged 18 to 24 find work) by focusing on hidden NEETs aged 16/17. The aim is early intervention to prevent those at risk from exclusion. They are especially difficult to identify, track and access. Consequently, they are accessed via local community groups which are grant aided to identify and engage them with the labour market. Talent Match Leeds This is also part of a national initiative that aims to provide additional support to long term unemployed (more than 12 months) young people who face multiple barriers to work. It uses specialist voluntary and community sector partners to provide bespoke quality services and has used an element of co-design with young people, involving a youth ambassador in their design. 06 urbact ii capitalisation

9 case study Better Informed Choices Reliable information is crucial to assist young people in their choice of careers. This work is designed to use labour market intelligence and employer knowledge to make available to teachers up to date material on growing sectors and occupations. A series of colourful factsheets have been produced to a common format, and presentations to schools and colleges undertaken. Even lesson plans have been developed (see www. lcrjobsintel.co.uk for the resources available). Management and resources The youth employment work is managed by a dedicated staff member of the Leeds City Region LEP, who reports to its Head of We have seen the impact of Apprentices on our business. They could account for half our new employees over the next 3 years. Vital Tech Group local technology services company So what makes it work? Enterprise, Jobs and Skills. Each of the activity strands has a project officer who initiates, develops, delivers (through a range of partners/contractors) and monitors progress of the activity. Reports are given to, and discussed at, a LEP Employment and Skills sub group on a quarterly basis. There are 4 staff engaged in the youth employment work (including the manager) working full time on it. What is a bit different about all this compared to the many other approaches to tackling youth unemployment and growing employment in other EU cities? D The strategic positioning of action on youth employment as part of the Leeds City Region LEP growth and jobs agenda means that demand and supply issues are seen in tandem and the links between them made. D The LEP strategy and agenda are strongly pro growth with a focus on job generation. They are necessarily therefore demand-driven and employer-focused in terms of requirements. This does not mean that supply-side issues are secondary, rather that they are viewed in terms of what is required by the economy and labour market, thus driving linkages between creating prosperity and people s needs. Hence, increasing employability is connected to job growth and employer needs, to the benefit of both. This should enhance the responsiveness of public agencies to labour market needs. D The activities developed on the demand side (within the themes of business growth, resource efficiency and infrastructure) are in consequence seen not only as drivers of growth but also as solutions to (youth) unemployment. This connection between both sides of the labour market means that there is regular, ongoing interaction between the activities, to secure effective outcomes. D The agenda and governance arrangements put employers centre stage, in terms of their needs and responsibilities. Employer engagement means participating in strategy, programme design and oversight of effective delivery. They bring insight from the demand side to LEP deliberations. They are able to access their business networks. They offer opportunities and a route to market. They become partners rather than recipients of the outputs from public programmes in which they were not involved. It raises awareness and improves mutual understanding across sectors. D The use of evidence has been integral to the development and design of the plans, activities and monitoring progress. For example, substantial commitment to securing the evidence base, understanding the problem and making the case to Government at the outset, was key to success. Calculation of the value of the 3 benefits in the five three one campaign to make the business case for action, focused the minds of the LEP and employers on the benefits of employer engagement. Much is also known about the jobs sought by young people. Moreover, the strategic economic plan conducted and commissioned an extensive array of research to ensure that the plan, pillars and activities were strongly evidence based and thus persuasive to Government e.g. on employment on skills issues. But it is not easy Developing and implementing the measures has not always been straightforward for a number of reasons: D The sequencing of the activities has not been entirely coherent, with them coming on stream at times determined by successful funding bids from evolving Government policies and plans. The urbact ii capitalisation 07

10 job generation for a jobless generation strategic economic plan, which should have come first, has only recently been produced and agreed. D The City Deal3 and Growth Deal4 from which several activities emerged, were only partial in the coverage of the target group. D There is considerable and time consuming negotiation involved in agreeing with Government what is possible and what resources will be made available. D The activities are also usually time limited though the five three one campaign itself is not. D Whilst the overall approach has been strongly evidence-led, the characteristics of the unemployed/neets could be better known and the nature of evolving job opportunities ever better identified. D Most employer relationships are based on direct LEP relations, which is very positive but time consuming, rather than Business to Business relationships, for example through supply chains and business networks, which could be more highly developed. What does this mean for other EU cities? What can be learnt from this experience? What does it tell us about what is likely to be successful? How can effective action be taken to tackle youth unemployment and create job opportunities? There is much that cities like Leeds can do to help young people get jobs, if they think creatively about how best to do so and add value to existing national initiatives. Leeds City Region has set itself a powerful ambition to be NEET-free and developed an interesting package of measures embedded within both a campaign and a strategic economic plan. It is driven by a coalition of committed stakeholders, led by business with a focus on local economic growth and job creation. Some of its distinctive characteristics are that youth employment is seen as integral to the wider growth and jobs agenda; employer engagement (and youth engagement) is taken seriously; and evidence is central to developing effective plans for action. The lessons that we can learn from this experience that may be transferable to other cities are: D There is value in bringing public agencies and employers together as in the LEP model to devise strategy and priorities as well as to build commitment, common purpose and sustainability. D Employer leadership has been a priority and provides a strong demand side orientation where growth and jobs are closely linked. Demand and supply sides actions can then be more closely connected. D A particular focus on smaller firms such as the emphasis on SMEs in the five three one campaign maybe resource intensive but reaps a range of benefits. D A focus on attitudes, information, relationships and behaviour may be as important as precise policies and actions. The strategic, long term approach to governance, engagement and mutual understanding adopted here matters as much as resources. D There is no substitute for a strong evidence base, to inform diagnosis of the problem and potential solutions, but also in monitoring progress. Evidence has been an integral part of the design, delivery and monitoring of the Leeds work. D Making the business case for action to the business community (as well as to Government and other stakeholders) is vital, as it is they who ultimately employ young people and it is their decisions which collectively determine whether more and better jobs are available to young people. In conclusion Many of the practices highlighted in this case study are actually, or potentially, transferable to other cities elsewhere in the UK and across the EU. The precise design and delivery of activities will of course differ according to local conditions, priorities and resources but the innovative features, success factors and lessons learnt will be useful to all cities who wish to tackle youth unemployment more effectively. They can be used as a check list, or a mirror, against which current or planned practices and developments can be compared. g 3 City Deals are agreements between government and a city that give the city control to: take charge and responsibility of decisions that affect their area, do what they think is best to help businesses grow, create economic growth. 4 Growth Deals provide funds to local enterprise partnerships or LEPs (partnerships between local authorities and businesses) for projects that benefit the local area and economy. 08 urbact ii capitalisation

11 Analytical template of the case study

12 job generation for a jobless generation BACKGROUND INFORMATION Name of city Region and country Geographic size Leeds City Region(LCR). Leeds City Region (UK). Located in Yorkshire in the United Kingdom. A population of 3 million with 1.9 million of working age and 1.4 million people in employment. The economy (total Gross Value Added) is worth 54 billion or 4% of the UK economy. It is the largest city region in the UK outside London. 1. PRACTICE DESCRIPTION One-liner description of the practice Main reason for highlighting this case An integrated package of measures to increase youth employment focusing on an evidence-based approach and high levels of employer engagement. The focus of the case study is youth employment. Youth unemployment (16-24 year olds) is now (mid 2014) 53,000 as measured by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) standard or 17,000 as measured by numbers in receipt of Job Seekers Allowance. They account for around a quarter of the unemployed. The ILO youth unemployment rate is currently 22%(the overall rate is 8.8%) and the JSA rate 5.7% (3.5% overall). Leeds City Region is ranked 31st of the 39 Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) in terms of youth unemployment. Leeds City Region focuses on youth employment, in particular through seeking to secure strong employer engagement and be based on a strong evidence base. In particular, the Campaign at its heart aims to secure significant employer involvement. The case of Leeds City Region provides an interesting set of practices, and lessons from them, which should be of interest to other cities across the European Union. Overall objective The aim is to secure a NEET-free city region, where there are no young people without a job, education or training. The more specific objective is to provide a range of opportunities to young people so as to reduce youth unemployment. 10 urbact ii capitalisation

13 case study 1. PRACTICE DESCRIPTION (CONT D) Description of activities The activities set out below have all been developed by the Leeds City Region Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP). There are 5 related strands of the tackling youth unemployment agenda: 1. Five-Three-One This is a campaign to stimulate employer engagement in a range of activities to provide opportunities to young people. It is seen as the net to catch employers who subsequently can be engaged in activities. There are: 5 things they can do (invest in skills; mentor a budding entrepreneur, build links with education providers, offer work placements to unemployed young people, and provide apprenticeships) 3 reasons for doing it (help someone reach their potential; their business will benefit; the local economy in which they do business will grow)and 1 positive outcome (our economy will grow) 2. Headstart This aims to, over a 18-month programme period starting March 2014, support 3,000 young people who have been unemployed for more than 6 months, to provide wrap around support to both individuals and employers, to include interview guarantees, in work mentoring (to both the young person and employer for 6 months) together with a wage incentive. Businesses were involved in the design of the employer-based training element. It aims to deliver 1,000 job opportunities. 2 youth ambassadors are being appointed from the target group to work with employers to sell the benefits and to exploit social media. They will be employed as Apprentices. In addition, an employment agency pilot has been established to influence opinion amongst private recruitment agencies who are very active in this market and to promote young people as a positive contribution to business. 3. Devolved Youth Contract This aims to take preventative action at a younger age for those young people at greatest risk of labour market exclusion (national action under the Youth Contract focuses on year olds). The focus here is on hidden NEETs aged 16/17, who are especially difficult to identify, track, access and engage. They are accessed and engaged via grant funded local community groups in a more flexible way than other similar initiatives. 4. Talent Match This aims to provide additional support to long-term unemployed (more than 12 months) young people who face multiple barriers to work. It uses specialist voluntary and community sector partners to provide bespoke quality services and has used a co-design approach with young people. 5. Apprenticeship Hub and Training Agency The creation of Apprenticeship Hubs in, initially, Leeds and Bradford, is designed to focus on SMEs. It provides a central point of contact for free independent and co-ordinated apprenticeship advice and report for SMEs. Using and other means, it aims to increase the proportion of employers offering apprenticeships from 12% to 20%: 7,500 new employers, with 15,000 new apprenticeships being created, within 4 years. For those SMEs who are not yet apprentice ready there is a Apprentice Training Agency which will create 2,500 apprenticeships over 3 years and will provide incentives to SMEs to directly employ apprentices leaving the ATA. These activities will draw on national programmes(e.g. Apprenticeships) and local actions (e.g. the employer ownership pilot, which focuses on skills development in SMEs through establishing a Skills Hub, and the more jobs, better jobs action research with Joseph Rowntree Foundation, which inter alia is establishing the business case for sustainable employment) to assist in reaching its objectives as appropriate. urbact ii capitalisation 11

14 job generation for a jobless generation 1. PRACTICE DESCRIPTION (CONT D) The youth employment agenda and practices are treated in LCR as both an economic and social issue. There is a social imperative to reduce unemployment per se as a desirable policy objective so as to reduce social exclusion and detachment from job opportunities. There is also a desire to reduce dependence on benefits and public support and increase autonomy and participation in society. Integrated approach The economic imperative is equally strong: increasing youth employment, increases local income and output, help grow the economy and provides the talent pipeline that employers need to meet their labour/skill requirements as the economy grows. It also reduces the strain on public finances and public services. Without policy actions to get young people into work, talent is wasted, opportunities missed and the risk of long term disengagement from the labour market and society grows. More broadly, action on youth employment is an integral component of the local strategic economic plan. Developing the workforce (within which the action area of creating a NEET-free city and reducing youth unemployment is located) is one of the four strategic pillars of the plan, along with: supporting growing businesses; building a resource smart city (including developing low carbon energy); and developing the growth infrastructure (including transport, housing and broadband). Target audience Mainstreaming of gender equality and nondiscrimination Timeframe of the practice implemented There is a twin focus on: young people who are unemployed or NEET (primarily aged in the former case and in the latter) and employers, particularly small and medium size enterprises. The dual focus is essential in order to ensure a focus on jobs(those needing them and those that can offer them) with further targeting on: 1. the unemployed most at risk from loosing out on job opportunities and those needing additional support beyond/additional to national mainstream programmes; 2. firms who whilst offering the main source of jobs growth (smaller companies)and constituting over 90% of firms, are usually hard to engage in public programmes. All elements of the programme are gender neutral. There are no specific objectives in respect to gender, nor measures of success. Targets are articulated solely in terms of numbers of beneficiaries (youth or firms) in the relevant target group. Gender mainstreaming is not relevant in the latter case. In the former, the targeting relates to ALL potential beneficiaries as defined e.g. by unemployment duration. Similarly, there are no specific objectives, targeting or measures of success in respect of ethnicity or disability. Note: Male youth unemployment is significantly higher than female youth unemployment in LCR. The first actions were identified and articulated in 2011 as part of the City Deal (see section 2), and several were incorporated in the Skills Plan established to deliver key components of the Deal, and they have been progressively developed and widened over the last 3 years, under the Growth Deal and Strategic Plan. Duration varies between 18 months and 5 years (depending on funding stream and whether it is a pilot programme), though the core Campaign is not time limited. 12 urbact ii capitalisation

15 case study 2. POLITICAL AND STRATEGIC CONTEXT The LCR Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) was formed in 2011, as part of the first wave of the new UK Coalition Government establishing a network of 39 LEPs designed to devolve powers and resources for local growth and development, in England. The 8 UK core cities, including LCR, negotiated and agreed City Deals with Government in 2012, with a further wave of 20 in 2013, giving them more powers and freedoms over skills, tackling worklessness and transport inter alia. 2.1 National, regional and city framework In July 2014, the LEPs signed up to wider and better-resourced Growth Deals with all LEPs. Each LEP has to produce a strategic plan for their area, within which the Deals are located. Such plans have to be consistent with national priorities. Funds are brought together in a single pot and allocated to LEPs to spend the way they know best on transport, infrastructure, housing, skills and employment. LEPs are also now responsible for establishing EU Structural Investment Funds (ESIF) frameworks/ strategies for the allocation and delivery of EU funding in England The youth employment activities are components of the city deal and growth deal, both embedded now in the Strategic Economic Plan (2014). This has 4 long term ambitions, under which there are a series of action areas proposed, or agreed, to be funded. These are: 1. Support business growth based on innovation and exports; 2. Create more and better jobs and the skilled workforce to sustain them; 2.2 The planning context 3. Develop a lean, resource efficient economy; 4. Build a physical and digital infrastructure enabling LCR to reach its growth potential. The connected and integrated nature of the plan is crucial to the success of meeting the youth employment challenge, creating the jobs needed to enable young people to move into work. The actions to tackle youth unemployment are primarily located within the second of these ambitions. The freedoms and flexibilities needed to secure these objectives are as important as the resources to be made available. urbact ii capitalisation 13

16 job generation for a jobless generation 3. DESIGN & MPLEMENTATION The early ideas were developed by the former Employment and Skills Board (ESB) existing under the previous Labour Government in 2010/11. The formation of the LEP and the prospect of City Deals accelerated the process. Under the LEP the former ESB was (re) established to focus on skills and jobs. The ESB, consisting of local authority representatives, business people, education/training providers and the public employment service together with an advisor, were supported by seconded staff from the constituent local authorities. 3.1 PRACTICE DESIGN AND PLANNING A series of Board meetings, a conference, and a series of task groups defined the key issues and possible practices, notably the campaign, which was defined as the means through which employers could be encouraged and energised to be engaged in providing opportunities for young people. Discussions were based on local intelligence from a range of sources on the extent and nature of youth employment/unemployment issues, including analysis of local official data from the Public Employment Service and Office for National Statistics and the experiences of businesses represented on the Board. The focus of the campaign on employer engagement was seen as key to success, without which enhancing youth employability would be unlikely to lead to jobs. The specifics of actions such as Headstart, Talent Match, the Youth Contract and so on (as well as other related actions on information, advice and guidance and skills development) were developed by staff as and when the opportunities arose, and presented to the Board for development and approval. Report backs at the regular (quarterly) Board meetings from the Task Groups assigned to each activity ensure oversight. 3.2 MANAGEMENT The youth employment work is managed by a dedicated staff member of the LEP, reporting to the Head of Enterprise, Jobs and Skills. Each of the activity strands has a project officer who initiates, develops, delivers (through a range of partners/contractors) and monitors progress of the activity. Reports are given to, and discussed at, the ESB on a quarterly basis. Problems are addressed initially by the project officer and, if required, escalated to the project manager and then the Head. There are 4 staff engaged in the youth employment work (including the manager) working full time on it. 14 urbact ii capitalisation

17 case study 3. DESIGN & IMPLEMENTATION (CONT D) The overall long term ambition is a NEET-free city and, shorter term, reduced youth unemployment. This strategic objective is monitored at programme and strategy levels, i.e. by the ESB (now renamed the Employment and Skills Panel) and by the LEP Board. Government also holds the LEP to account for achieving the commitments it has made, in the context of the resources delivered and freedoms and flexibilities secured. Moreover, the Skills Plan (see section 2) has been updated to align with delivery of the Growth Deal and contains a range of 7 targets(measures) and 15 indicators which are reviewed annually using official and survey data.3 of the targets/measures and 7 of the indicators directly assess progress on the youth employment agenda (they relate to at measure/target level: work readiness; youth unemployment; and apprenticeships). In addition, all activities have targets in respect of the objectives for that activity and progress towards these are reported quarterly to the ESP (as it now is) and more frequently to line managers internally within the LEP. The approach is strongly results-oriented, with divergences identified, explained and, if required and possible, corrective action taken. 3.3 MONITORING AND EVALUATION SYSTEM In terms of 5-3-1, for example, the progress is measured by: The number of companies signing up The number of employees in the companies The number of Apprenticeships The number of employer mentors offered New businesses launched Work placements offered Volunteering hours pledged by employers Value added to the local city economy Headstart, for example, has the objective of reaching/assisting 3,000 young people and delivering 1,000 job opportunities. The Devolved Youth Contract, aims to outperform the national programme in its NEET to EET success rate i.e. progress into employment, education or training. The Apprenticeship offer also has clear, stretching numerical targets(on which see above). In terms of evaluation, the Headstart programme has initiated a formative evaluation programme to inform the development of the programme as labour market conditions change. The Regional Economic Intelligence Unit has been commissioned by the LCR Enterprise Partnership to evaluate the project in real time. This means the evaluation is taking place during the implementation of the project. It has the benefit of helping to address short comings and learn lessons even before the project is completed. (See also section 3.2 above on management). urbact ii capitalisation 15

18 job generation for a jobless generation 3. DESIGN & IMPLEMENTATION (CONT D) Tackling youth unemployment is a key concern across the LCR and nationally. It was necessary and desirable to ensure that the LCR value proposition was to add value to existing national programmes, confront specific issues in the locality and secure buy in from all the relevant partners who had a role to play in tackling it. It was important to take action as an integral part of the wider economic plans for the area. Consequently, the actions to tackle youth unemployment are designed and managed by the LEP as part of its strategic economic plan. 3.4 GOVERNANCE: PARTNERSHIP, PARTICIPATION, MOBILISATION AND EMPOWERMENT The LEP Board, as the title implies, is a formal partnership recognised by Government as the body responsible for driving growth, jobs and prosperity in LCR. Its top level strategic goals are to secure an additional 62,000 jobs by 2021 and to add 5billion to the local economy. It is in this growth and jobs context that action on young people and jobs is framed. The Board brings together the public, private and third sectors together, working to a shared vision of economic growth. It consists of 17 members, chaired by the private sector and being mainly local authorities and senior leaders from private companies. Under the board sit 3 panels focusing on the main areas of LEP activity: Business, Innovation and Growth; Employment and Skills; and Green Growth. The chairs of each panel become Board members. Membership is by open competition and selection. The youth employment work is overseen by the Employment and Skills panel, which meets quarterly. Its membership has a majority of private sector members together with a number of senior local authority representatives and advisory members (including the Public Employment Service and VET provider). It is supported by a small secretariat organised along similar lines which also includes a research and intelligence team which informs strategies, policies and plans. The actual delivery of the activities is usually commissioned from local providers following a tendering process, though is delivered in house. 16 urbact ii capitalisation

19 case study 4. INNOVATIVE ELEMENTS AND NOVEL APPROACHES The key innovations of interest are as follows: The strategic positioning, interface and integration between the growth and jobs agenda and tackling youth unemployment. This means that demand and supply issues are seen in tandem and the links between them made. For example, discussion of employment and unemployment co-exist and actions on each are in the frame of actions on the other. This is the case at secretariat, panel and board levels. It also means that the strategic plan and it s delivery are connected across the pillars of the plan. The terms of reference and focus of the LEP mean that the strategy and agenda are strongly pro-growth with a focus on job generation. They are necessarily therefore demand-driven and employer-focused in terms of requirements. This does not mean that supply side issues (unemployment and skills for example) are secondary, but that they are viewed in terms of what is required by the economy and labour market, thus driving linkages between creating prosperity and people s needs, for example the young unemployed, in order to access/benefit from the prosperity. Hence, increasing employability for example is connected to job growth and employer needs, to the benefit of both. This should enhance the responsiveness of public agencies to labour market needs. The activities themselves which are developed on the demand side, in respect of business growth, resource efficiency and infrastructure, as well as more jobs and better jobs are in consequence seen as drivers of growth but also as the solutions to unemployment, including youth unemployment. This ongoing connection between both sides of the labour market mean that there is regular, on going understanding and interaction between the activities, teams and panels to secure effective outcomes. The agenda and governance arrangements put employers centre stage. Not only in terms of their needs but also in terms of their responsibilities. Employer engagement means participating in strategy, programme design and oversight of effective delivery. They are able to bring insight and experience from the demand side to LEP deliberations. They are able to access their business networks. They offer opportunities and a route to market. They become partners rather than recipients of the outputs from public programmes in which they were not involved. It raises awareness and improves mutual understanding across sectors. The use of evidence has been integral to the development and design of the plans and activities as well as to monitoring progress. For example, substantial commitment to securing the evidence base, understanding the problem and making the case to Government in the initial City Deal, was key to success in sealing the Deal with Government. Calculation of the value of the 3 benefits in the campaign to make the business case for action, focused the minds of the ESP and employers on the benefits of employer engagement. And, demonstration that the Devolved Youth Contract is delivering better outcomes than the comparable national programme (in terms of NEET to EET achievements) is crucial. Moreover, the strategic economic plan conducted and commissioned an extensive array of research to ensure that the plan, pillars and activities were strongly evidence based and thus persuasive to Government. urbact ii capitalisation 17

20 job generation for a jobless generation 4. INNOVATIVE ELEMENTS AND NOVEL APPROACHES (CONT D) There are a range of innovative practices within the activities themselves: is an outward facing campaign, which seeks to sell the benefits of action on employment and skills to employers. Only a small fraction of employers, especially smaller ones, are aware of, let alone utilise, public programmes of assistance and support. This campaign seeks to widen and deepen relations with the business community on a one by one basis, with the offer of hassle-free support to do the 5 things envisioned, for 3 good reasons(benefits) with one bigger outcome. Partly a campaign, partly a conversation and partly a brokerage service, it asks (via the use of leaflets, sign up cards, website, events, campaign stalls, badges and other colateral) if employers are willing to become involved in the activity/ies. Referrals are received by a caseload manager who then makes contact with the company to explore their requirements and recommend appropriate action. Formal referral is then made to the relevant delivery partner. A relationship is established through which commitment and support can be provided, on both sides. The overall aim is to win the hearts and minds of employers, recognising that changes to their behaviour are more sustainable through building relationships rather than one-off transactional links. Many employers are keen to help, but small ones especially don t know where to start and also fear bureaucracy. Making the initial link is vital. 2. The connection to private Employment Agencies. This enables access to a key source of employment opportunities for young people, seeking to influence employer and recruiter opinion of young people and promote them as a key business opportunity. Such agencies are especially active in high labour turnover sectors with strong jobs demand even in weak labour market conditions. Many operate especially in sectors employing large numbers of young people, e.g. hospitality. From a young person s perspective, engagement with such agencies has a more positive vibe than with the Public Employment Service, which can be associated with benefit sanctions and other punitive action. The type of jobs on offer often also differ between the public and private agencies. 3. Youth engagement (see also section 4). The appointment of two Youth Ambassadors as part of the Headstart programme. They are employed as Apprentices and their role is to sell the talents and benefits of engaging young people to local employers. They have produced a video, available on YouTube, to assist this as well as designed a series of personalised leaflets, set up a twitter account and face book page, to take advantage of social media opportunities. 4. Youth co-design in the development of Talent Match 5. In work mentoring, youth and employers See also section 7 on success factors and lessons learnt of relevance to other cities 18 urbact ii capitalisation

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