CMI backs Apprenticeship Levy reforms as UK managers support need to invest in skills

Posted On: 
1st June 2017

As the UK prepares to elect a new Government that will negotiate the terms of Brexit, the Chartered Management Institute has launched its Management Manifesto - a roadmap for government and business leaders, as well as public, education and professional bodies to work together to safeguard the future economic prosperity of the UK throughout the next term of Parliament.

The UK needs 1.9m new managers by 2024 so it needs to strengthen routes into management. CMI believes schools should be measured on the employability of their students.

The next government should make a long-term commitment to systemic change in the education system to ensure that young people in the UK can make a successful transition into the workplace and the next stage of their lives. The national curriculum needs a school-to-work syllabus to develop employability skills, including team leadership and communications skills, which should be accredited.

5. The Age of Apprenticeships – New Routes to Get into and Go Far in Management

A radical change in the perception of apprenticeships is a must. New trailblazer degree apprenticeships not only meet employer needs, they also offer real opportunities both to young people and to those already in work, supporting lifelong learning. Business as whole must also fully embrace the support given by the Apprenticeship Levy – this provides a much-needed answer to long-standing under-investment in critical skills, including management and leadership.

The next Government also needs to back their expansion and improve access to funding – in particular for small businesses. It also needs to work with partners to improve awareness and understanding among young people, parents, employers and existing employees about the opportunities available.

Ann Francke, CEO of the Chartered Management Institute, said: “While election debate focuses on winning a great EU trading deal post Brexit, we risk losing sight of a bigger prize. Improving management and leadership across the UK and closing the productivity gap could be a bigger financial reward for the UK than maintaining access to the EU’s single market (£84bn vs £75bn).

“Closing that gap will be impossible if so many companies remain choked by outdated management cultures. We need to radically overhaul business cultures and work in ways that blend better with people’s lives, give people more power to perform, and make flexibility a reality on both sides of the employment relationship.

“We have to make sure that our workforce remains diverse, and is equipped with the progressive and practical skills needed to keep British business competitive. It is therefore vital that any future government puts plugging the skills gap and implementing progressive and inclusive pay policies at the top of its agenda.

“Complex challenges demand collaborative answers, so our Management Manifesto is not a simplistic shopping list of actions that managers demand from the next Government. It’s a roadmap for employers and for bodies like CMI to work together for change.”