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Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) across Scotland can access training up to the value of £5,000 provided by the OU to support staff development. This fund was first announced by the Scottish Government as part of the 2021-22: Phase 2 of the Flexible Workforce Development Fund (FWDF), to help SMEs address key skills gaps and develop the skills your business needs.
Get in touch
Develop training plan
Register your employees
Get in touch today to arrange a meeting to discuss utilising the Flexible Workforce Development Fund in your organisation.
Organisations should apply to the FWDF through the OU.
An OU business advisor will support you to develop a training plan to support your organisation’s identified skills needs. Organisations will then be supported to complete an application, informed by the skills needs analysis and training plan, and submit this to the OU along with evidence of eligibility, for consideration. Upon approval, your employees will be supported to register with the OU upon the courses outlined in your organisation’s training plan.
To find out more about eligibility criteria and how to apply, please download our Flexible Workforce Development Fund Employer Guide for SMEs.
To learn more about upskilling your employees through FWDF with the OU, find out more below:
Watch our webinar to explore how the OU can support your organisation to develop your staff and volunteers via the Flexible Workforce Development Fund, which is supported by the Scottish Government via the Scottish Funding Council.
The OU offers SMEs a tailored suite of training for their employees, delivered online through our innovative platforms. It is a highly flexible way to access the training your business needs – in the workplace or from home – whilst accommodating operational requirements and optimising business efficiency, and your employees’ personal commitments.
The flexible learning suits our staff. The support and resources are excellent, allowing study in any location.Fraser Ferguson, Director of KubeNet Ltd
As Scotland’s largest provider of flexible part-time higher education, with over 50 years’ experience of providing innovative distance learning, we are uniquely equipped to help industry address national skills gaps and support employers to develop a futureproof talent pipeline in an ever-changing world of work.
How the Flexible Workforce Development Fund could benefit your business:
Want to know more about how upskilling your employees through the FWDF with the OU works? Read Euan’s story from Hogganfield Care & Skye Care and how he has utilised it to secure fully-funded, high quality training for his teams.
The training provided by the OU will position SMEs to respond to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, adapt to new ways of working and maximise the opportunities to restart, recover and renew.
We will support SMEs through training at Scottish Credit & Qualifications Framework (SCQF) Level 10 - undergraduate - or SCQF Level 11 - postgraduate - and through industry recognised or accredited provision.
Our training options focus on areas reflecting Scotland’s skills priorities:
The format of the training available will include:
Additionally, SMEs – and their communities – are readily able to access our extensive range of free informal learning resources available via our OpenLearn platform to support lifelong learning, with individuals able to gain statements of participation and digital badges.
In recent years, sustainability has moved up the political agenda and is now central to many organisations’ future plans. Government targets will change the way organisations deliver their products and services. Specialist skills and knowledge will be vital to this transition.
The immense challenges of COVID-19 have shined a new light on health and social care.
Developing new talent and creating flexible career pathways is vital to ensure a bright future and deliver the services which have been so crucial in helping the country through recent challenges.
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