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A forward thinking local authority is using information sharing to help its young people boost their prospects in the world of work and training.

North Lanarkshire Council Education Development Officer Michael Dolan says: "By confirming the SDS data with our own baseline information, we know young people's destinations when they leave school which allows us to inform schools of specific growth sectors with key economic drivers in mind."

Because the data hub provides real time updates, it is current and pro-active, as Michael explains. "The top three occupation sectors for school leavers in North Lanarkshire are retail, sales and marketing; hospitality and catering; and construction," he says.

"It's a matter of concern that engineering, for example, is in the bottom three. By using the data hub, we get an accurate picture that allows us to evaluate and improve what we are offering young people." Crucially, the local authority then takes the information back to the schools.

"We disseminate job opportunities directly to schools and identify where there are future employment opportunities with economic development," he adds. "For example, we work with partners to gather the most up-to-date information from the hub to alert young people to the opportunities available. The data hub also has the potential to help us plan future course provision for school leavers."