Businesses have just four months to take advantage of funding that will help train staff to move into management roles.
Firms in Norfolk and Suffolk can access Emerging Leader project support until 30 April 2018. The support, through the European Social Fund (ESF), is available for businesses based in Norfolk or Suffolk with fewer than 250 employees and supports projects to enhance leadership skills. The project will enable the dedicated support of up to 200 emerging leaders across the New Anglia LEP area.
One business which has already benefitted through the Emerging Leaders project is West Suffolk-based Smart Garden Offices, who were given support by West Suffolk College, an Emerging Leaders partner. They have closed skills gaps in their company with training funded by the ESF as part of the Emerging Leaders project.
In order to meet increasing demand for their product, they recognised that there was a need for training and development at management level. Debi Knott, Operations Director of Smart Garden Offices, said: “We take our staff development very seriously and wanted to provide a specific tailor-made training course on our own site, for those staff who we wanted to develop into future managers. The Emerging Leaders programme enabled us to do that.”
The end result of the training was that the employees of the company had grown in both confidence and ability, all taking on more responsibility and progressing within their job roles, with some being promoted to higher management positions.
The Emerging Leaders project is ESF funded and managed by The College of West Anglia, working in partnership with the five other general further education colleges in the New Anglia LEP area. The six colleges have come together to form the New Anglia Colleges Group (NACG) and will be delivering the project as a partnership. The New Anglia Colleges Group has a wide range of operational relationships already in place across the whole geography and currently works with 4,500 SMEs in the New Anglia LEP area.
To date, the project has supported 121 ‘Emerging Leaders’ from 48 SMEs.
The European Social Fund can deliver skills training to employees who are aged 19 or over, who have lived in the EU for the last 3 years and who are seen as ‘emerging leaders’ in the organisation.