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A new grant has launched to upskill SME employees As we embark on the road to recovery following the impact of the pandemic and Brexit on the national economy, we are delighted to announce that a grant is now available to support your business to upskill new employees, or reskill employees who are returning to work following long periods of furlough.

The new £12m skills fund is aimed at Small to Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs) to help upskill/reskill your workforce and to succeed in a post-coronavirus business world. The fund will help close Britain’s productivity gap, build a more profitable, resilient business in line with the Government’s White Paper on Industrial Strategy.

Funded by the European Social Fund, the Supplier Skills Programme (SSP) is available to SME’s looking to develop the skills set of new and existing employees. The programme offers training grants of £500 to £18,000 to SMEs based in The Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership’s more developed areas of Birmingham, Bromsgrove, Redditch, Solihull and The Wyre Forest.

SSP is managed by Birmingham City Council and delivered in conjunction with several strategic partners, which include Creative Alliance, Kaplan, Skills Training UK, Birmingham Adult Education Service (BAES), Make UK (EEF), Open Study College, Midland Group Training Services (MGTS) and SMMT Industry Forum or any other suitably qualified partner of your choice. The programme is employer led and therefore provides greater scope for delivering bespoke training based on business needs at the time you need it. It offers greater flexibility as training can be delivered by a training provider operating virtually, long-distance or face to face.

Full qualifications level 1 – 7 or equivalent (including higher level management and leadership skills) are eligible, along with units/a unit of qualification at basic levels. All training must be Ofqual accredited or recognised by industry or a professional body. Full eligibility criteria, along with application documents are available on: Funding is now open, so we would encourage SME’s to apply as soon as possible.

If you would prefer to discuss your application in more detail prior to submission, our local SSP partners are available to assist (see contact details below): Birmingham City Council GBSLEP Growth Hub
0800 032 3488 Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council
0121 704 6151 Bromsgrove District Council, Redditch Borough Council and Wyre Forest Council
0156 273 2174

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