Local Skills Improvement Plan

What is a Local Skills Improvement Plan (LSIP)? 

A local skills improvement plan (LSIP) tries to align post-16 education and training with the most urgent needs of the local job market. The goal is to stimulate local economic growth by making the local workforce more employable, giving people the skills they need to get the available jobs. More information: Local skills improvement plans (LSIPs) and local skills improvement fund (LSIF) - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk) 

Why do we need them? 

Education and training provisions vary enormously across different regions of the country (see here Education in England: Annual Report 2020 - Education Policy Institute (epi.org.uk)), as do labour markets and the skills they demand. Because of this, deciding the most effective strategies to improve skills and meet labour demands is a complex task. An LSIP tackles this problem by focusing on a specific region, rather than the entire country. It aims to establish which jobs are available, and how to better provide people with the skills to get those jobs. This can be achieved in several ways: by aligning with existing skills strategies, dialogue with local employers, and, most importantly, evidence-based decisions. 

How does it work? 

An LSIP is broken down into 3 stages: 

  1. Find out where the skills gaps are.  
  2. Increase the provision of those skills. 
  3. Increase the demand for those skills to match the supply.  


An LSIP runs for three years in each area and is regularly reviewed and updated to ensure the improvement plans remain relevant to the skills needs. Another key component is consideration of the skills needed for jobs that help reach net zero and climate change targets. It is funded by the UK Government.  

The Chambers Role  

West & North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce is leading two Local Skills Improvement Plan (LSIP) programmes, one for West Yorkshire and the other for York and North Yorkshire. It is delivering the West Yorkshire programme in conjunction with Mid Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce.  

We are clear on the changes we want to see for our business community and will be building on work already underway in many of these areas. To deliver on all the changes we will emphasise facilitating the discussions to set out how we will get there by proactively and positively engaging with education providers to stimulate transformational and real change. 

Other key partners 

The LSIP has significant support from key stakeholders including further education colleges, universities, independent training providers, local and combined authorities, business groups, employer representative bodies and trade associations. 

How is the plan created?  

The plans draw on a range of evidence, from in-depth conversations with the business community through one-to-one meetings, focus groups, roundtables, workshops, surveys, and large-scale events. The plans set out an understanding of local circumstances, needs and aspirations across various aspects of business: large to small, sector to clusters, cross-theming to geographies. The LSIPs address each aspect and what we will measure to demonstrate real and sustainable progress. The development of the two LSIPs, and their implementation, is underpinned by continuous engagement with partners, stakeholders, and businesses. 

How do they benefit business? 

The work facilitated by the Local Skills Improvement Plan helps to close gaps to ensure all people have the right skills to build successful long-term careers and to help businesses fill vacancies and get more local residents into high quality jobs. The LSIP helps to make skills more accessible and address barriers to progression. It will also help to increase productivity, reduce unemployment and boost Yorkshire’s growth and business performance. 

How investing in skills can benefit your business 

Investing in skill development creates a pipeline of future leaders, ensuring continuity within the company and promoting a positive work culture. Empowering employees through skill development enhances their performance, decision-making abilities, and overall contribution to organizational success. 

Support for skills in your area  

There is lots of support available in the local area to access apprenticeships, accredited learning, short courses and succession planning. Useful contacts include Colleges, Universities and other training providers.  

If you require any further skills support for your business, whether that be short course, accredited training or apprenticeship provision, we will be happy to try to signpost you to the right provision, please contact us at skills@wnychamber.co.uk 

Read the West Yorkshire Local Skills Improvement Plan Report

Read the York & North Yorkshire Local Skills Improvement Plan Report


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