Our Goal

Scotland’s businesses drive productivity and inclusive growth.

Businesses need to be able to attract, develop and retain a diverse pool of talent to meet their current and future skills needs. Access to the right skills enables employers to have high performing, highly productive workplaces, and build the capacity to adapt well to change and disruption.

Our role is to support and encourage Scotland’s businesses to grow and prosper through investment in skills. We do this by advising employers on effective workforce planning, building resilience to disruption, and creating the conditions for long-term sustainability.

Collaborating with our skills and enterprise agency colleagues, we aim to deliver a full suite of easy-to-access inter-agency support for Scotland’s businesses, with SDS leading on the skills agenda.



employers have had targeted WBL engagement from our Employer Services team

Since 2015


SMEs have been supported through Skills for Growth

Looking Forward

In the next three years, with the direction of the Strategic Board, we will be working with our agency and other partners to offer clear, accessible and tailored services that deliver a better customer experience to the business community.

To increase the productivity and sustainability of Scotland’s businesses in an uncertain and challenging environment we will drive adoption of the innovative and fair work practices required to deliver on our shared ambitions for greater productivity and inclusive growth.

Over the next three years, we will:

Deliver an aligned and integrated service offer for employers

  • Develop a new agency-fluid team to
    support inward investment to Scotland and business growth
  • Jointly establish a digital portal for all enterprise & skills agency employer services, improving access to the right support
  • Improve cross-agency data sharing and analysis to inform service development and delivery.

Inspire and enable employers to take a strategic approach to workforce planning:

  • Offer tailored advice and guidance to help businesses identify and meet their current and future skills needs
  • Provide mechanisms for employers to re-skill and up-skill their existing workforce
  • Maximise the uptake of work-based learning products from employers

Promote the development of productive and innovative workplace practices

  • Raise awareness of productive business models and innovative workplace practices, through a programme of cross-agency activity
  • Use data to proactively identify and support sectors or businesses able to benefit from adopting new approaches
  • Develop approaches to improving leadership and management skills across Scotland

Drive understanding and adoption of fair work practices

  • Promote the benefits of adopting fair work practices
  • Support the development of progressive and inclusive workplace cultures

Case Study

We supported Brewdog through the introduction of a successful apprenticeship programme, which has benefited both the business and employees.

Find out more

Our Strategic Plan

If you'd like to read our Strategic Plan for 2019-22 in full you can download it here. For more information on how we're mobilising Scotland's businesses, view pages 27-31.

Download here