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Skills, Education and Training

The UK economy, as it emerges from recession, faces skills shortages which manifest in two forms:

  • A proportion of people in jobs do not have all the necessary skills/and or the right level of skills and hence are not as productive as they could be.  This impacts the productivity and value added of the firm and hence of the industry sector and the UK economy.

  • A number of industry sectors find it harder to recruit new people to fill vacancies with the right type and level of skills and hence have vacant posts for longer than should be, or recruit improfficient people into these posts   This impacts the productivity and value added of the firm and hence of the industry sector and the UK economy. 

  • Together, proficiency gaps and hard to fill skills vacancies are potentially having a significant adverse impact on the UK economy

  • Adroit Economics has developed a new approach and methodology towards estimating the lost productivity and growth resulting from skills issues for several industry skills bodies.


Skills issues are more serious in some parts of the country than in others, and for some sectors more than others (particularly IT, science, engineering and other technical skills).  Adroit Economics has been modelling the impacts of this at the local authority and LEP level.  Moreover, the age profile of employees in many of our science and engineering sectors suggests high levels of retirement in the near future and there is considerable concern in industries as to how the gaps will be filled when the pipeline of new entrants appears thin.  Adroit Economics has developed a model for Cogent (a science industry skills council), to estimate future vacancies and the need for more apprentices and graduate entrants, across the UK, in the pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, industrial biotechnology, medical technology and chemicals sectors.  This model can also be applied to other industry sectors.


A new approach to skills training, led by industry, part funded by government (via UKCES) is being piloted across the UK, at all levels and points of entry to the labour market - pre-apprenticeships, apprenticeships, graduates, post graduates, workforce skills/continuing professional development etc.  Adroit Economics is evaluating the impact of a number of these pilot programmes.  Our approach and methodologies have been applauded by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES).


Value added we bring to this policy field:

  • The Adroit team has developed industry and Government commended skills models which enable us to identify the scale of skills issues and their impact (arising from improficiency, hard to fill skills vacancies and future skills needs resulting for example from increased retirement).

  • Our models work just as well at the local level as at the national level and are therefore a powerful addition to our local economic development toolkit

  • These tools, combined with our strong programme evaluation expertise, enable us to undertake high quality evaluations of new skills pilot programmes and full scale delivery, that capture and quantify the economic benefits to employers and the industry as a whole, as well as to employees


Specialist models and research tools developed by the Adroit team:

  • The Adroit Economics, working with industry skills bodies (e-skills UK and Cogent for example), has developed models for assessing the impact of improficiency and hard to fill skills vacancies on business and industry sectors, which estimates lost productivity and value added

  • We have also developed models for estimating future vacancies in critical industries sectors, resulting from increasing retirement and shortage of new entrants

  • Using these tools, Adroit Economics is evaluating a number of industry-led UK skills pilot programmes – our approach and methodologies have been applauded by the funding agency UKCES

  • We are now in the process of applying our models to local authorities/ LEP areas to identify where the issues are most critical

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