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Raising employability, education and skills are the business critical 'People' priorities in the Black Country LEP’s Strategic Economic Plan.

This is measured by 4 key indicators:

1. Skills for the supply chain

2. Skills Capital

3. Schools

4. Upskilling

Within the Black Country we have already seen considerable progress:

1. More Black Country residents educated to degree level or above than ever before – 163,000 residents.

2. The percentage of people with no qualification continues to reduce

3. The number of apprenticeships is increasing – 13000 apprenticeships starts

4. 4,900 new workforce jobs

5. The proportion of people Not in Education, Employment or Training (NEETs) is below the national averages.

Critical to the continuation of this work, is the necessity to work closer with employers across our Transformational and Enabling sectors to articulate what are the employer-led demand for skills and how we can work closer with providers to match this supply and demand.

We have already seen considerable progress with the range of funding that has been allocated to LEP areas such as Youth Employment Initiative, Talent and now Building Better Opportunities (not managed by the LEP) and through innovative approaches to Careers and Enterprise and Sector Skills Action Planning for sectors such as Sport and Physical Activity.

The strategic co-ordination, planning and evaluation of this work, is championed by the LEP’s Employment and Skills Board.

In doing so, we aim to work with employers to articulate the employer gaps and shortages.

For more information on our employment, education and skills initiatives, please visit