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The Framework

The Impact Programme 2022-23

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The Skills Builder Partnership brings together educators, employers and impact organisations around a shared mission: to ensure that one day, everyone builds the essential skills to succeed.

Each partner organisation is brilliant at what it does – but together, we have the opportunity to learn from one another, to align our efforts, and to multiply our impact.

The Skills Builder Impact Programme is a gateway to joining a movement of impact-led organisations who are passionate and forward thinking about developing the essential skills through their work.  

We will provide you with the individualised training and strategic support to make the most of the Skills Builder approach, and receive recognition and promotion of your work as a result.
Join a network of organisations, employers and educators
Empower individuals to articulate and build their essential skills
Implement a strategy for skills development across your organisation
A team of colleagues training together
The Universal Framework icons

The Impact Programme is our flagship approach for impact organisations. With individualised training and access to our resources, we work together to use the Skills Builder approach to boost your participants’ essential skills further, and to demonstrate your impact.

Benefits for your organisation

  • Achieve recognition as a leading builder of essential skills with a Skills Builder Impact Level
  • Upskill your team to make the most of your opportunities to build your beneficiaries’ essential skills-
  • Demonstrate the quantitative impact of your work on your beneficiaries’ essential skills
  • Join and learn from a network of like-minded organisations in a movement to ensuring that one day everyone builds the essential skills to succeed

The Impact Programme includes:

  • At least two training sessions for your team
  • Regular planning and review meetings with your designated Skills Builder relationship manager to support implementation
  • Tools and resources which you can weave into your programmes to boost essential skills development
  • Access to the Impact Level review, after which your programme can be promoted across our networks
  • Networking and learning opportunities with peers in other partnered impact organisations

All training and support is delivered online. If you would like to discuss options for in-person training and support, please contact your Skills Builder relationship manager.

The Partnership

The Skills Builder Partnership brings together 800+ organisations, education institutions and employers  around a common approach to building eight essential skills. Central to our approach is a rigorous progression framework, a set of underlying principles and a complete suite of tools and teaching materials.

In 2021-22, the Partnership supported over 180 impact organisations from across a broad range of sectors: from sports to careers and employability, youth provision, the arts, inclusive settings and more.

Message to get in touch and speak to one of our team.

The Framework

The Skills Builder Framework is the national standard for developing essential skills. It breaks each skill into tangible steps, supporting progress for individuals of all ages and abilities to build their skills at every stage of life. The Universal Framework was developed with Skills Builder by the Careers and Enterprise Company, Gatsby Foundation, Business in the Community, EY Foundation, the Confederation of British Industry and Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.

The universal framework. Listening, Speaking, Problem Solving, Creativity, Staying Positive, Aiming High, Leadership and Teamwork
Click on each of The Impact Programme elements to learn more.
Scroll right to see the whole journey, then tap on each of the elements to learn more.
Strategic Support
Receive one to one support every step of the way. Regular video calls to support with any questions you have for your priorities and Impact Level accreditation.
Kick off meeting
Begin your journey with your Skills Builder relationship manager, plan the strategy for embedding the Skills Builder approach in your organisation. You will start to plan your Impact Level goals and the details and date(s) of your training.
Progress check-in 1
Review the Impact Level goals set and progress since your last bespoke support session. Additional Impact Levels or training support can also be discussed.
Progress check-in 2
Review progress towards the Impact Level goals set and progress since your last bespoke support session, earn accreditation for your programme. Discuss your priorities, next steps and programme renewal.
Bespoke training
The focus for your bespoke session will be agreed in the kick off meeting. You may choose from a menu of options:
Reviewing your provision and embedding the Framework
Measuring skills impact
Creating resources aligned to the Framework
Train the trainer: upskilling staff, volunteers and stakeholders to develop essential skills
Commissioning the Skills Builder team to create resources on your behalf
Group Training 1: Introduction to Skills Builder
Learn about the Skills Builder Partnership, the Framework and Impact Levels. Ask questions and network with other programme members from a range of organisations.
Group Training 2: Planning
Learn more about provision design and impact measurement systems to the Framework. Decide on your chosen Impact Level and review which skills you would like to include in your provision.
Group Training 3: Implementation and Impact Level Accreditation
Implement your aligned provision and agreed approach. Explore the resources and training required to lead a sustainable approach for skills development. Discuss any queries about your Impact Level goals and evidence before or after submitting your provision for accreditation.
Additional Bespoke Support
The focus for your bespoke session will be agreed in the kick off meeting. You may choose from a menu of options:
Reviewing your provision and embedding the Framework
Measuring skills impact
Creating resources aligned to the Framework
Train the trainer: upskilling staff, volunteers and stakeholders to develop essential skills
Commissioning the Skills Builder team to create resources on your behalf
Optional Bespoke training: Review and Mapping
Gain a clear picture of your current provision and how it already aligns with the Framework, we will signpost areas for development in line with your priorities and impact aspirations
Optional Bespoke Training: Impact Measurement
Evaluate your current impact measurement of essential skills, or implement new processes and tools.
Optional Bespoke Training: Train the Trainer
Support and build confidence in your delivery team or stakeholder network to understand and develop the essential skills of your beneficiaries
Premium elements
Skills Builder Benchmark admin licences and integration options, see Benchmark tab for more details.
Essential Skills Academy, fully resourced workshops available, see resources tab for more details.
Tools and resources
Skills Builder Benchmark
Online assessment tool for individuals to self assess their essential skills
Skills Builder Launchpad
Online learning platform for individuals to reflect on and build their essential skills
Skills Builder Hub
The home for Skills Builder Resources for teachers or facilitators, also includes a group assessment tool.
Click on tools and resources and benchmark tab to find out more
Networking and promotion
Regular forum events throughout the year on specific clusters or topics
Annual Partnership wide events including research launches
Impact Level promoted and shared across the partnership in monthly/termly newsletters

What are the Impact Levels?

  • The Skills Builder Impact Levels recognise high-quality essential skills provision at four levels of impact: awareness, reflection, practice and progression.
  • The Impact Level accreditation is awarded to individual provision / programmes / platforms which demonstrate best practice and meet the listed criteria.
  • As an active member of the Skills Builder Partnership, your accreditation will be validated in each year of your membership, you will receive an annual kitemark and will feature on our Impact Directory.

How do I achieve an Impact Level?

  • In your training sessions, you will be able to discuss your priorities and provision, and map out a plan for the year to achieve the Impact Level(s) you want to work towards.
  • You can submit your provision and programmes' evidence for review at any point during your membership.
  • As soon as your Impact Level is achieved, it will be featured on the Impact Directory and you will receive a kitemark to use in your marketing, impact reporting and resources.
  • In the summer we will finalise the numbers reached through your accredited provision, contributing towards our collective impact reporting.
The Impact Level 1 badge
Raising awareness of essential skills
  • Programmes that are successful at this level make individuals more aware of the eight essential skills and their importance for success. 
The Impact Level 2 badge
Reflecting on essential skills
  • Programmes that are successful at this level give individuals the opportunity to become more self-aware of their skill levels and next steps by reflecting on the essential skills. 
The Impact Level 3 badge
Practising essential skills
  • Programmes that are successful at this level give individuals the opportunity to reflect as well as apply and practise their essential skills and the steps.
The Impact Level 4 badge
Progressing in essential skills
  • Programmes that are successful here combine the chance for individuals to reflect on the essential skills before and after applying them. Programme content  is specifically targeted on making steps of progress and data is collected to demonstrate this. 
A screenshot of the Impact Directory
Visit the Impact Directory to see examples from partners across the country and the globe...
A screenshot of the Impact Directory
Visit the Impact Directory to see examples from partners across the country and the globe...

Tools and Resources

As part of your membership, you will have access to a range of tools and resources to support the development and evaluation of essential skills progress.


An image of a laptop displaying the Skills Builder Benchmark

What? Skills Builder Benchmark is an online self-assessment tool. Learners can reflect on their skill set, using questions aligned to the Skills Builder Framework. Admins can use it as an impact measurement tool, by setting up groups and collating data about individual learners.

Who? Individuals aged 11+ can register for free and record their reflections.

Cost? Free for individuals to use. Admin Licences can be purchased by members of the Skills Builder Partnership, see Benchmark tab above for more details


An image of a laptop and smartphone displaying the Skills Builder Launchpad

What? Skills Builder Launchpad features online learning modules that build every step of the Skills Builder Framework. It is designed for older learners to build their own essential skills independently.

Who? Individuals aged 11+ can register for free and start learning.

Cost? Free


An image of a laptop displaying the Skills Builder Hub

What? Skills Builder Hub features a huge array of resources for building essential skills - plus an easy way to track group-level progress against the Skills Builder Framework.
Who? Teachers and facilitators, working with children and young people can access free resources and the assessment tool.

Cost? Free to use. Premium elements can be purchased.

Essential Skills Academy

An image of a laptop displaying the Skills Builder Essential Skills Academy

What? Essential Skills Academy is a fully resourced training course to support individuals to make measurable progress in their essential skills. Ten 90 minute group sessions available for you to deliver or for Skills Builder staff to deliver for you.

Who? Designed to support Work Experience, Apprentices, Internships and Graduate Trainees.

Cost? Start from £4,460 with additional costs depending on the type of delivery you would prefer. Please contact us to discuss the needs of your programme.

An image of a laptop displaying the Skills Builder Benchmark

Skills Builder Benchmark for Impact Organisations

What benefits does it offer? 

A screenshot of the Skills Builder BenchmarkA screenshot of the Admin page within BenchmarkA screenshot of a group skills audit

The Skills Builder Framework breaks each essential skill into development stages, and then smaller progression steps. This forms the basis for Benchmark’s skills reflection tool, where individuals can make quick and easy reflections by independently answering some simple questions.

On the Admin dashboard, see summaries of individuals’ skills reflections so personalised follow up guidance and support can be provided. View collated data for groups of individuals, to understand skills strengths and gaps across your provision.

You can also see progress over time to understand the impact of your programmes. This can be filtered to see the data for individuals or groups. This feature is currently being developed and will launch in Summer 2022. 

Discover essential skills at an individual level

Offer targeted support

Understand your impact 

Who’s using it?

use it to reflect on their essential skills in everyday life and to become work-ready
Secondary schools & colleges
use it to facilitate targeted essential skills education
Impact organisations
use it to measure the impact of skills-building activities
Employers use
it as part of work placements or ongoing professional development

How does it work for individuals?

Choose an essential skill and answer some simple questions
Discover strengths, areas for development and practical ideas to improve
Download a personalised Skills Report to share with a mentor or facilitator

How are other organisations using it?

Subscription options 

Optional Integrations

Embed Benchmark in an iFrame

Single sign-on

Data sharing API

  • An iFrame is a piece of code (HTML) that allows you to nest one browser into another.
  • It allows you to put Benchmark on your own site. 
  • Users will feel like they are somewhere familiar because they won’t leave your site. 
  • We can provide a banner and images to give some context to how Benchmark may be used in your specific organisation.
  • Single sign-on (SSO) is an authentication method that enables users to securely authenticate with multiple applications and websites by using just one set of credentials.
  • Users only need to remember one password.
  • If they are already signed in elsewhere, they don’t need to sign in again for Benchmark.
  • Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) are often called web services or web APIs. They allow for data to be automatically shared between applications.
  • You can store, view and analyse Benchmark data in your existing data management system. 
How do I become a member and join The Impact Programme?

Just get in touch at and one of our team will arrange a call to discuss your aims and aspirations, we can then discuss the support package that will best suit your needs.

You will then be able to sign up online for your programme, using the 'Join the Partnership' link.

Can I speak to someone about joining the programme?

If you have questions about the programme offer, you can email us at and we will get back to you. Please include the name of your organisation in the email.

Who can register for The Impact Programme?

Any Impact-led and not-for-profit organisations, based in the UK or internationally, can register for Impact Programme.

This programme is also open to local authorities, local enterprise partnerships and multi-academy trusts.

Depending on your organisation’s turnover, you can find out more and register for the  Group Training Programme, which is for smaller organisations.

If you’re unsure of which programme is best for you, please do contact to discuss.

How much does The Impact Programme cost?

We are a not-for-profit social enterprise, and ask partners to make a contribution towards our costs of delivering the programme. The programme starts from £1,980 per year. Additional training and support sessions can be added to suit your priorities and these start from £660 per session.

Organisational admin access to the Benchmark skills assessment tool starts from £800.

When can I sign up?

The programme is open all year round. Your programme will be 12 months and you can liaise with your skills builder relationship manager to arrange the training dates which suit your planning and timelines best.

I am based outside of the UK, can I join?

Yes. We work with a number of partners based internationally. Contact us to discuss programme details and timings of our group training sessions.

I am at a for-profit organisation, can I join?

Our impact organisation programmes are for non-profit and community interest companies only. However, you can join the Partnership through our Employer programme here.

When do training sessions run and what is the format?

All training dates are agreed between your organisation and your Skills Builder relationship manager. Our sessions are typically delivered online but we can discuss options for in-person delivery, should you wish.

Can I add bespoke support to my Impact Programme?

If you would like additional support during your programme, this can be added. Each programme session starts from £660 and we have a menu of options. Please speak to your Skills Builder contact to discuss these options further.

What is Skills Builder Benchmark and how do I access an admin licence?

Find out everything you need to know about Skills Builder Benchmark via the tab above.