Centralised Work & Skills Hub to boost Economic Recovery

The Challenge

Acting quickly at the outset of the Coronavirus pandemic, Stockport Council recognised the potential impact that business closures, redundancies and furlough could have on their thriving local economy.

They wanted to explore the possibility of a proactive solution that could help to minimise job losses and ensure full employment for essential services during regional and national restrictions, whilst also providing a platform for a speedy recovery as the borough emerged from lockdown.

Their immediate priority was for a ‘crisis response’ technology solution that could be implemented quickly and effectively.

Their longer-term objective was to develop a centralised resource that could link education and training provision to economic priorities and deliver wider partnership outcomes that would support their ambitious growth agenda.

The Solution

stockport jobsmatch logo gr consulting

GR Consulting designed and launched an initial solution within 3 days. A functional job board and recruitment website to advertise local job vacancies, combined with a managed consultancy solution to match jobseekers with local employers.

Having supported the Council’s Work & Skills Commission over the past 2 years and as a member of the Board, GR Consulting was then able to work closely with the Council’s Economic Resilience team to develop an agile and responsive solution based on data-driven labour market insights.

Over a 6-month period, GR’s strategic objective was to build partnerships between enterprise and education to ensure opportunities for employment were accessible and identify links between skills investment and workforce demands.

The GR Team delivered a range of solutions – from targeted hiring events for large local employers to virtual careers fairs with the borough’s secondary schools, FE and training providers. Strong collaborations between local partners were essential to deliver an all-encompassing and responsive approach.

This included supporting national job creation schemes from Kickstart to Traineeships, whilst responding to local priorities (from retail and manufacturing redundancies to growing demand within the health and social care sector).

Following additional GMCA funding, GR also re-developed the initial recruitment website to create a centralised self-serve technology platform for education and training providers, employers and jobseekers.

Stockport Jobs Match’ combines the functionality of a job board, training directory and careers hub, whilst gathering data insights to inform future employment and economic investment.

The Outcome

Combining a data-driven, strategic approach, advanced stakeholder engagement and an agile technology solution, the GR team worked with Stockport Council to deliver a targeted and highly effective response during a period of great uncertainty.

GR’s solution helped Stockport Council in bridging the gap between education, skills and employment to support and drive business and economic opportunities for growth – during COVID-19 and beyond.