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The Strategic Board formed to co-ordinate the activities of Scotland’s enterprise and skills agencies has published its outline plan.

Formed last year following the Enterprise and Skills Review, the board aims to align the work of Skills Development Scotland (SDS), Scottish Enterprise, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and the Scottish Funding Council.

Entitled Working Collaboratively for a Better Scotland, the plan identifies a series of early priorities:

  • Embedding cross-agency collaboration and culture-change to make the customer experience simpler, more streamlined and easier to navigate.
  • Improving the user experience for all by creating a fast, easy-to-use integrated system delivering support, funding and advice to learners, employers and businesses.
  • Working together to improve Scotland’s performance by examining in detail important factors that affect inclusive and sustainable economic growth and considering new ways in which the system could address them.

Driving growth

This third priority will be addressed through four “missions” identified in the plan, each led by a small team headed by a Board member to explore ways of driving economic growth.

They are:

  • Business creation and growth
  • Business models and workplace innovation
  • Future skills needs
  • Exporting

Nora Senior, Chair of the Enterprise and Skills Strategic Board (right), said: “Over the coming months, working with the enterprise and skills agencies and others who can make a difference, we’ll be developing plans to drive economic growth through co-ordinated improvements and enhanced interventions in these areas.

“If Scotland is to succeed in growing its economy, maximising opportunities and reducing exposure to economic shocks, we need to share smart ideas across the system and deliver them together to secure better results for all our communities.”

The Board features members with a wide range of business experience with further representation covering education, research, trade unions, local authorities.

Enhanced support

The outline plan was welcomed by SDS Chair and Strategic Board member, John F. McClelland CBE (right).

He said: “Since before the Strategic Board was formed, SDS has been working in partnership with the other enterprise and skills agencies to build on the strengths of the system and enhance the support delivered to employers and learners.

“This outline plan builds on the work done so far, and recognises the importance of future skills needs and workplace innovation.

“We welcome the opportunity it offers to develop and deliver better skills pathways for Scotland’s learners, employers and industries and to investigate with business how we can enhance productivity in a fair and inclusive manner.”

The Strategic Board will now embark on a period of engagement with a wide range of stakeholders to inform the development of a series of recommendations aimed at driving economic growth.

This will form the basis of a full Strategic Plan, which is expected to be published in October 2018.

Find out more

Visit the Enterprise and Skills Strategic Board web page to find out more.

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