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Business welcomes action on basic skills


The British Chambers of Commerce have welcomed the Government’s launch of a new employer toolkit to help businesses improve the basic skill levels of their employees. However, they urged the Education and Skills Secretary, Estelle Morris, to go the extra mile and provide real investment in developing the potential of the UK workforce.

David Lennan, Director General of the British Chambers of Commerce, which represents 135,000 small to medium sized businesses, said: "Many small firms need to be made aware of the huge costs to their companies of poor basic skills within their workforce. Identifying low levels of literacy and numeracy in a number of employees will have a positive effect. However, it would be helpful if the government took a holistic view of training needs in a company. Chambers have been at the forefront of advocating a free, Government funded, Training Needs Analysis programme, which would not only identify poor basic skills, but also enable those who are capable of progressing to supervisory roles to gain the skills needed to fulfil their potential."

"As key partners of the Basic Skills Brokerage scheme, we would recommend that this programme is extended throughout the country and provides a launch pad for not only addressing skills, but also tackles the skills problems inherent in British industry. To do this Government must invest in a targeted programme to fully develop its life-long learning strategy."

What incentives will encourage companies to invest in improving basic skills? Post your comments below.


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