Skip to main

Career Review background and timeline

SDS is carrying out a holistic review of careers services in Scotland, including mapping of the current service provision across Public Sector service delivery and Government funded initiatives.

This review will also incorporate user views on how a future service should look for each identified user persona. 

Recommendations will then be developed in conjunction with partners and users.  

The following table outlines the key activity and intended outputs - dates are indicative and subject to change.


Delivered by 

'As is' Review: complete review of existing policy, funding, service offers, user perception and performance for current provision.  

End of May 2021

Identify any gaps: gaps in provision informed by 'as is' review.

End of July 2021

Design and development: design and develop prototypes for new services, changes to existing services and a target operating model to support these.

End of October 2021

Recommendations: informed by all activity and input from stakeholders, develop recommendations for submission to Scottish Government.

End of December 2021  


The devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economy has made it more important than ever that the people of Scotland are offered comprehensive, joined-up careers information, advice and guidance.

The only way this can be achieved is by local and national partners working with employers and the public sector to engage with individuals at every stage of their career journey, from primary school and beyond. 

We must work collaboratively across the private sector, third sector and public sector to ensure no one is left behind and give them every opportunity in life.

Fiona Hyslop

Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Fair Work & Culture, September, 2020 

In response, the Scottish government has created the Young Person’s Guarantee to ensure everyone between 16 and 24 in Scotland will have the opportunity to access support that will help them into fair employment including work experience, further or higher education, apprenticeships or other training programmes, formal volunteering or a supported activity programme.   

SDS has continued to adapt and scale our delivery since the beginning of the pandemic and is committed to working collaboratively with local and national partners to ensure that young people get access to the right support to help them succeed. 

Building on this work, SDS was asked in Sandy Begbie’s Initial YPG Report in September to take forward the recommendations of last year’s Scotland’s Careers Strategy: Moving Forward report.

In addition, SDS was asked to lead a review of how best a career advice service could operate from early years right through until a young person enters employment. This would address the long-term issue of how best to give young people the insight to what the economy of Scotland is likely to need in the future and how that might influence their decision around career paths.  

The third sector already plays a vital role in helping young people in school and their options for when they are leaving school. In considering how best to develop that end to end career service SDS has been asked to collaborate and work with the third sector so their services are an integral part of the model. This would also allow the development of the service to be based on what our young people would look for from such a service, in other words a codesign approach.  

SDS was charged with starting work within three to six months of the report’s September publication.