The Essential Skills Academy is suitable for employers or organisations offering employability training or work placement programmes (such as Kickstart, an apprenticeship or an internship), who want to ensure that participants make measurable progress through their programme and leave better equipped to thrive in their role or to secure their next job.
The content is focused on the eight essential skills of the Skills Builder Framework; speaking, listening, staying positive, aiming high, problem solving, creativity, leadership and teamwork. These skills are transferrable across sectors, and so the programme is applicable for participants working within any industry.
The training sessions of the Essential Skills Academy have been designed to complement all types of work experience opportunities.
We recommend sessions are delivered on a fortnightly basis, but the programme can also be scheduled flexibly to best fit the structure of your placement.
Each training session lasts up to 90-minutes, and after each session there is the opportunity to set participants some light ‘homework’ to support them in actively practising the skills discussed within their placement. Throughout the course, there will be an opportunity for participants to reflect on how they have used their essential skills in different work activities, what strategies worked and what they might like to try next time. Participants are also supported to articulate the skills they have developed to equip them for future job interviews or appraisals.
The Essential Skills Academy was designed to answer the question ‘how can individuals meaningfully develop their essential skills in the workplace?’ Kickstart is a great opportunity for individuals to gain the experience they need to move into sustained employment and the Essential Skills Academy ensures that they can identify how they have developed their skills and understand how to articulate this in a professional context.
We worked with Business in the Community, CIPD, and the CBI to consider how best to support Kickstart participants with our resulting guidance and advice published in the Employer’s Guide to Kickstart.
The Essential Skills Academy has been developed as a one-stop solution for all types of work placement, helping employers and gateway organisations to ensure that every participant leaves the scheme better equipped to succeed.
The Essential Skills Academy has been optimised for group teaching. We recommend delivering each workshop to a cohort size of between 5-20 participants with the opportunity for multiple cohorts to enlist on the course.
The Essential Skills Academy can be delivered directly by our expert team or we can provide your team with the course resources and train-the-trainer training so you can deliver it to participants yourself.
Direct delivery: This will take place via web-conference. Full delivery and facilitation would be provided by a Skills Builder Education Associate; qualified teachers with outstanding teaching and training practice. We would work with you to create a timetable for the delivery of the 10 sessions for each cohort.
Train-the-trainer: Alternatively, you may find it more useful to purchase the Essential Skills Academy as a stand-alone resource, which your team can deliver yourselves, after an initial ‘train-the –trainer’ session from Skills Builder. This flexible and cost-efficient option will mean you can use the resources to support as many cohorts of work placement candidates as you like, following a structure that best suits your participants’ needs.
The Essential Skills Academy starts from £5,200 with additional costs depending on the type of delivery you would prefer. Please contact us to discuss the needs of your programme.
After completing the Essential Skills Academy, participants will receive a certificate of excellence within essential skills.
Skills Builder works with a range of organisations, including Youth Employment UK, Upskill Me and Ark (Professional Pathways), who are already doing their own amazing work to build employability skills. We support these organisations to enhance their programmes by building in the consistent language of the Skills Builder Framework in their existing programme of activities. Alongside, we provide tools and training to support organisations to further refine their employability programmes, measure their impact, upskill their team and grow the reach of their programmes.
The Essential Skills Academy can work as an additional resource to complement the existing timetable of employability support you offer to your trainees, or we can provide tailored modules to your specifications to ensure the best fit with your existing provision.
If you already provide employability programmes, we’d love to have a conversation about how our organisations can work together towards our shared goal of boosting participants’ employability skills, so please do get in touch to discuss.