“Get it while you can”: £6m EU-funded skills training launched for Lincolnshire SMEs

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Almost £6 million of skills funding has been released for small to medium sized businesses in the Greater Lincolnshire area, but the deadline to apply is notably short due to its European origin.

The Skills Support for the Workforce project offers fully-funded training to SMEs in order to full skills gaps, as well as boost growth and productivity.

Professionally-delivered training is offered at no cost to the business and has previously been taken up by a number of firms in the area.

The project is co-financed by the European Union’s European Social Fund and the Skills Funding Agency and is available for SMEs seeking non-compulsory work-based training to support their business growth plan.

It was launched on March 29, the day PM Theresa May triggered the start of negotiations for the UK to leave the EU.

Ebrahim Dockrat, Director of Calderdale College, the prime contractor for the project, said: “By training your staff you can improve your ability to adapt to a rapidly changing business environment, nurture a leadership team for the future and make you an employer of choice for emerging talent.

“As this training is funded with European money this is the last project of its kind. This funding is only available until July 2018 and so it’s a case of get it whilst you still can.”

Greater Lincolnshire’s economy contributes over £16 billion to the national economy; it has the busiest ports in the UK and the largest UK port by tonnage; it has a manufacturing sector worth £1.8 billion and a low carbon sector worth £1.2 billion. The region also has 41,000 SMEs.

However, businesses face challenges finding the right skills within the local labour market, with business leaders stating that their businesses would grow if they could access the right skills and training, with skills programmes tailored to their needs.

For more information on businesses’ eligibility for fully-funded training, visit the website here.