29 May 2024, 17:05
By Furniture News Jul 01, 2016

Proskills UK closes

After 13 years, Proskills UK and its National Skills Academy for Materials, Production and Supply have ceased trading.

Originally set up as a Sector Skills Council in 2003, Proskills was fully funded by the Government to support the skills ambitions of employers. As part of the change in Government policy, its funding was withdrawn in 2011 and so it became a self-financing organisation.

According to Proskills, the past five years have seen an ever-changing skills environment which has made it more difficult than ever to create the desired level of sustainability.

Over the years, Proskills has secured over £260m for a range of industries to use to develop the skills of their staff. It has supported the development of over 600,500 learners from the four UK nations, via more than 450 qualifications, over 2000 qualification units and 70 apprenticeships covering 150 job roles in 10 industries. It has worked with employers and industry bodies to develop and review more than 2500 National Occupational Standards, most recently supporting the Furniture Manufacturer Apprenticeship Standard development.

Proskills’ Schools into Industry Programmes, PrintIT! for Print, Paper, Packaging and MakeTI! for Wood, Timber, Furniture and allied trades, have supported well over 150,000 students from over 2500 schools to gain an employer-focused insight and helping hand into career and apprenticeship opportunities. These programmes will continue in safe hands with new industry custodians.

Proskills has worked with a number of key stakeholders, employers and partners to ensure a smooth transfer and continuance of its key industry services and functions. Its quality assured certification and licencing services will continue under new ownership, as will its awarding organisation, Occupational Awards Ltd.

The MakeIT! Schools programme will be kept in the custodianship of the British Woodworking Federation. the Occupational Awards Limited (OAL) is currently being transferred into new parent ownership and will continue to serve the wood and furniture industry’s qualifications needs.

Trailblazers/Apprenticeships will continue to be developed with key employers and in partnership with OAL, which retains Lisa Williamson.

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