What is the Evidence Base?

ESB Evidence Base

With our third Essex Skills Evidence Base just around the corner, we're excited about our biggest and most informative booklet to date, but we know that not everyone will know what it's all about. This article will explain everything you need to know about the most comprehensive skills information resource for Essex - the ESB Skills Evidence Base.

In order to inform and support a skills system which is truly employer responsive, a robust Evidence Base is required to accurately describe current and future skills and employment needs for Greater Essex. Although a great deal of skills information already exists, even at a national level, this tends to be disparate and, prior to our Evidence Base, had never been gathered or interpreted at a detailed local level. This has led to a fragmented picture of local needs and a skills system which is not always responsive and does not create viable opportunities for local people; this is echoed by local businesses.

As with our previous Evidence Base summaries, we have used a combination of published data and statistics, local business feedback and information on planned future developments. Within our latest version, we are proud to include an update on the wide range of activity we are taking forward in order to respond to the skills shortages identified in previous years. Together, with a range of partners, we have continued to make excellent progress, but there is still much to do.

Through our Evidence Base we have laid an strong foundation in portraying a detailed and vivid picture of local skills needs. We continue to receive an enthusiastic response to this, with schools, colleges, Universities, businesses, partners and providers all commenting that this information is much needed and well utilised. Importantly, it gives us a holistic and clear picture of local need. Furthermore, we have also been approached by a number of organisations outside of Greater Essex, seeing this as a best practice model.

We recognise that it is important for us to keep information up to date and continue to ensure that it is accurate by including updated statistics and local business feedback, both of which are reflected in our summary.

14 Local Skills Profiles covering all district, borough, city and unitary areas in Greater Essex: Basildon, Braintree, Brentwood, Castle Point, Chelmsford, Colchester, Epping Forest, Harlow, Maldon, Rochford, Southend, Tendring, Thurrock and Uttlesford.

Updated sector skills profiles including: Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering, Care, Construction, Creative, Health, I.T and Technology, and Logistics.