Tender opportunity for communications specialists supporting the Local Skills Delivery Plan

LSIP, The Current "Ask" - update 24 Sep 21

Creative and PR Marketing communications company needed

Sussex Chamber need a creative and expert PR/Marketing communications organisation to help us not only with the communications on this project but help us shape the narrative and questions we need to pose to employers, leaders and stakeholders to get the insight required to form a cohesive and clear LSIP through online means.

This will include:

  • Content management of regular communication with a range of audiences and stakeholders
  • Assist in the development of a series of online polls, surveys, statements to support the identification of the skills needs and solutions to these from key employers at CEO or MD level, HR Director in different sectors. These would be focused on the immediate, medium and long term and may be different for different sectors.
  • Marketing and communications on the range of ways employers can get involved e.g. face-to-face events/conversations, online questionnaires, phone surveys and other key insight collection ideas/methods.
  • Highlight the collaborative approach to the process with key links to other employer representative groups e.g. IoD, CBI, FSB, affiliated town and area chambers and other groups focused on skills improvement e.g. Skills East Sussex, Coastal West Sussex Skills and the B&H Learning Partnership as well as others.
  • Showcase the fact that the LSIP will be built on existing local, regional and national data and evidence on skills from key partner organisations such as Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs), Local Authorities and the Further Education college sector and wider provider network.

All of this should focus our voice around the positive collective force for change so that the different parts of the skills and employment infrastructure will work together to enact real change (countering any 'we've been here before' or 'not again' mantra) - the current Skills and Education Bill going through parliament at the moment adds a statutory requirement (and Ofsted measure) on FE colleges and providers to show how they are addressing LSIPs etc (for the first time) and the LSIP development process is really being driven by business leaders.

Overview of the LSIP

Sussex Chamber of Commerce is delighted to have been chosen by the Department for Education as one of eight Local Skills Improvement Plan (LSIPs) trailblazer chambers across the country.

The LSIP trailblazers overall purpose is to break down barriers between employers and education and skills providers by identifying the short, medium and long terms skills needs and in turn develop a more responsive local skills system.

Skills have never been a more important topic as we re-open our economy and lives in general and we start to address the post covid and post Brexit world.

Over the next few months the Sussex Chamber will work with employers and employer representative groups, to identify these local needs and solutions to address them in our key sectors:

  • Engineering and Manufacturing
  • Construction
  • Digital
  • Visitor and Cultural Industries
  • Land-based
  • Health and Care


In developing the trailblazer LSIP, Sussex Chamber will need to follow the process below:

  1. Oct & Nov 2021: Specification of skills needs - Marshall on-the-ground intelligence from employers to identify and articulate unmet and future skills needs in Sussex (priority sectors and cross cutting)
    • Data analytics from various sources
    • Marketing, communications, surveys, polls
    • Workshops
  1. Dec 2021- Mid Jan 2022: What needs to change and why - gather evidence to identify what needs to change in the local skills system and why (evidence based)
    • Optimising mix and delivery provision
    • Improving progression pathways (pipeline, in work and reallocation within and between sectors)
    • Greater employer engagement, investment and skills utilisation
  1. Mid Jan - Early Feb 2022: Roadmap for delivering change - agree with providers and other what local action can be taken to improve responsiveness and what specific interventions are needed to address barriers that are preventing the system from adapting:
    • Bringing providers and employers together to plan and deliver provision
    • Greater collaboration and specialisation in delivering provision more effectively and efficiently
    • Joining up more effectively
    • Raising demand leveraging innovation and business support
    • Targeted interventions to address barriers that are preventing the local skills system to adapt such as
      • New, emerging area where investment is high risk and returns uncertain, especially in areas with long lead times
      • Cross-cutting skills where investment in training does not reflect the wider economic benefits such as net zero carbon and digitalisation
  1. Feb 2022 onwards: Managing change - to establish:
    • Outputs, outcomes and success measures
    • Benefits realisation plan
    • Delivery, monitoring and review
    • Developing the LSIP plan

LSIP plan

Following a conversation with DfE (Department for Education), they stressed the importance of developing an LSIP which:

  • Adds value
  • Is different
  • Challenges the norm
  • Provides new insights
  • Disrupts the status quo
  • Is innovative

There is universal agreement that only through a collaborative and joined up approach will we generate a plan that truly recognises the skills needs, and almost more importantly, some of the solutions that colleges, universities and providers will need to implement in order to address these.

It is also recognised that we need to build on the intelligence and information that is already available and this project will work closely with Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) and Local Authorities and local skills groups to build on the wealth of existing evidence to develop an improvement plan that really will make a difference to Sussex's productivity and prosperity.

LSIP Plan of Activities and Engagement

We have developed an initial meeting schedule (see below), which will evolve and further insights and meetings will need to be scheduled within this.

Employer conversations will begin in earnest and these will continue until the New Year when the skills needs and potential solutions will be synthesised into the Skills Improvement Plan which will be submitted to government by the end of February 2022 with the plan signed off by government by May that year.

This plan will then be implemented by colleges, universities and the wider education provider network over the next three years, with the Chamber providing a key role in ensuring the agreed actions are implemented.

Workshops - "to develop the draft statement of unmet and future skills needs, review specification of skills needs, evidence - qualitative and quantitative, what needs to change and why".

How to apply:

Please email skills@sussexchamberofcommerce.co.uk with your proposal of £9,500 (6 months costs).

Should you wish to review a copy of our LSIP bid, please request this from Sussex Chamber by 4th October 2021.

Useful References:

Skills for Jobs: Lifelong Learning for Opportunity and Growth


Skills and Education Bill: https://bills.parliament.uk/publications/41544/documents/288



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