We’ll be continuing to update this page as work on Cumbria’s Local Skills Improvement Plan progresses so please do keep coming back to check progress and get involved. We’re also communicating regularly through emails and other opportunities.

Check out our latest LSIP update here.

2024 Survey

We’re currently surveying employers, repeating some of last year’s questions as part of tracking and monitoring progress. Whether you participated last year or not, please take 10 minutes to fill out the survey: Cumbria LSIP (Local Skills Improvement Plan) 2024 Survey

As ever your input is greatly appreciated and as you can see makes a real difference!

Thank you!

Many thanks to the hundreds of you countywide who’ve been contributing to this year’s LSIP – and to the hundreds who contributed to the Trailblazer pilot.

Your input is absolutely fundamental to making this report something that really works for Cumbria!

LSIP Report 2023

You can download a copy of this year’s LSIP report to read and use here.

In producing this work the Chamber and a range of other employer bodies and industry specialists engaged with hundreds of employers countywide, employer bodies, providers and other stakeholders. Activity included both primary research (surveys, 1-2-1 discussions, focus groups) and secondary research. This included drawing on other studies commissioned by the DfE and others, slightly earlier or in parallel.

This is, and as always been intended as, a living document and partners have been working over the months since it was submitted to the Department for Education (DfE) to implement and continue to update actions. We’ll be keeping you posted on that progress moving forward.

If you’d like to discuss any element of the plan then please do get in touch.

Underpinning LSIP reports

Supporting the above LSIP report are a number of other reports, providing more detail on specific sectors:

Action Log

You can view the current update of our detailed action log here.

If you have any updates to this please let irene@cumbriachamber.co.uk know.

What is the Local Skills Improvement Plan?

LSIPs are employer-led and locally owned.

They set out the key priorities needed to make technical education and skills provision more responsive to the changing needs of employers and the local economy by:

  • ensuring a better match between the supply of and demand for the skills employers most need to thrive and boost productivity, as well as helping to drive greater collaboration between providers to realise the benefits of economies of scale and specialisation
  • making provision more accessible and addressing barriers to progression, especially for the adult workforce, such as driving greater join-up between skills offers, including work programmes
  • recognising that improving the supply of skills must be accompanied by demand-side measures that drive greater employer engagement and investment in skills and support potential learners through effective careers guidance.

While all post-16 technical education or training is in scope, an LSIP is not intended to be comprehensive anthology of all skills gaps in the area. It will be for employers, through us, to identify the most pressing skills issues. We’ll also be looking to complement spotlights on specific sectors by considering cross-cutting issues such as low carbon, digitalisation and transferable ‘soft’ skills affecting businesses in all sectors.

In addition to looking at existing qualifications and apprenticeships, our LSIP will identify the sort of non-accredited and quintessentially local provision that can best meet emerging skills need.

In essence it’s about ensuring we have the right provision to enable people to do their current and future jobs better.

How can you get involved?

There will be continuing opportunities to take part in 1-2-1 discussions and workshops, complete surveys and review and comment on findings as we progress with further development of the LSIP right through to at least 2025.

We’ll be highlighting them here and elsewhere.

What sectors and skills does the LSIP cover?

LSIPs focus on specific priorities and sectors, rather than seeking to cover every skill and need. That said we are also considering cross-cutting themes across Cumbrian business in general.

The sectors chosen for focus by the Steering and ERB Groups are: construction, energy, landbased, manufacturing & engineering, social care and the visitor economy. We’re also pulling food & drink out of manufacturing as a subset.

Who should be involved?

While LSIPs are employer-led, they’re certainly not about employer representative bodies (ERBs) or employers working alone. If we’re truly going to make this work in the best interests of Cumbria, then the range of stakeholders need to continue to work as actively and constructively together as for the pilot.

So we’re keen for everyone with an interest in skills to be actively involved:

  • Employers or all sizes and sectors, throughout the county (whether members of an organisation or not)
  • Employer representative bodies, local business groups and networks and professional organisations
  • Intermediaries and business support providers
  • FE Colleges, independent training providers, universities and other providers of relevant post-16 technical education and training
  • Local authorities and the LEP, including the Skills Advisory Panel
  • Jobcentre Plus and CIAG providers
  • Sector groups and centres of innovation
  • Groups and organisations who can help build understanding of the needs of employees and learners and the barriers they face, including those from disadvantaged and under-represented backgrounds as well as those with special educational needs and disabilities.

This isn’t an exhaustive list so if you don’t think you fit into the above list but have something to contribute please get in touch!

Who are our ERB partners?

As for the pilot, ERB partners working with us on the LSIP are:

  • British Energy Coast Business Cluster
  • CBI
  • CITB
  • CLA
  • Cumbria Tourism
  • Farmer Network
  • NFU

Who to contact

Contact the LSIP project team via irene@cumbriachamber.co.uk

Conflicts of interest

Openness, fairness and transparency are important to us. You can read our LSIP Conflicts of Interest Policy here and our Anti Bribery and Corruption Policy here.

You can read the Register of Interests for people working directly on the LSIP here.