Employment and Skills – looking forward

 In Employment, News

When ELBA’s Employment and Skills programme was established in 2005, its mandate was simple; to engage our business partners in the local unemployment agenda and help disadvantaged people from East London into work. Since then, we have supported over 6,000 people into work, and thousands more have benefitted from work experience placements, internships, mentors and employability skills training.

Our approach to skills and employment embraces the many dimensions of people’s lives and recognises the critical junctures (illustrated below) disadvantaged communities face when considering aspirations, careers and employment. Our employment programme takes account of these challenges, creating a tailored approach to employability skills that truly meets the needs of our beneficiaries.

1. In-Work Poverty
As in-work benefit claims have continued to climb in recent years, our response has been to take employability into the workplace; supporting low income workers to improve their skills and in turn, their earning potential. By supporting corporate partners to better understand the crucial role they can play in improving the life chances of their employees, our key skills projects Enable and Future Fit sit within a framework of professional development focused on; ‘up-skilling’ through communication skills (Enable) and ‘new skilling’ related to automation and technology (Future Fit) – ensuring employees are best positioned to meet the needs of our current and future job market.

2. Diversity & Inclusion
ELBA has always played a crucial role in helping employers move the needle on Diversity & Inclusion. The ELBA Eagles graduate internships programme has been tackling social mobility for 15 years and is now supported by Parity and Moving on Up which are specifically focused on improving employment outcomes for young black men, and Everyone’s Business, working with those affected by youth violence. Employability training is at the heart of these projects, which provide bright, talented and enthusiastic beneficiaries with the soft skills needed to access and thrive in roles that may previously have proved inaccessible.

3. Recruitment and Progression
Access to sustainable work for the unemployed and underemployed remains an ELBA priority and will be of greater significance as the full labour market impact of Covid-19 is unveiled. Without the key employability skills needed to navigate the recruitment and selection process, many local people will struggle to bounce back. Our job brokerage projects, Broadgate Connect and THHRIVE, create opportunities for people to achieve and practice these skills whilst providing access to sustainable roles across east London and the City. The work of our social mobility recruitment agency London Works forms an essential element of our offer to graduates and highly skilled professionals.


To find out more about ELBA’s Employment and Skills work, please contact siobhan.scantlebury@elba-1.org.uk.

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