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Workforce and Skills

West Sussex County Council is leading several initiatives to meet the workforce needs of our businesses, by helping to grow the skills and aspirations of our residents.

West Sussex is home to many highly skilled residents and a wide range of exciting employment and career opportunities. We are committed to helping our businesses access the workforce they need in order to grow, to develop skills and opportunities for our residents and to ensuring West Sussex offers prosperity for all.

Despite a strong economy, there are areas of challenge within the county. Skill levels are not equal across the county and in some areas, businesses cite difficulties with recruiting enough employees with specific skills, particularly in the technical and engineering fields. This is not particular to West Sussex and is reflected across the country, so we are putting in place projects to help raise the skills and aspirations of our residents and to deliver the skills and pool of employees that our businesses need.

The Full STEaM Ahead programme is an exciting, county-wide project which aims to raise aspiration around science, technology, engineering, creative digital and mathematics. We are working with businesses, educators, STEaM specialists, adults and young people to encourage those of all ages to consider careers in STEaM and to promote the excellent opportunities available in the county.

Encouraging businesses to recruit, retain and retrain an age diverse workforce is another way in which we are supporting businesses to access the skills and workforce they need to grow their organisations. This programme helps residents who are aged 50+ to stay in fulfilling work for as long as they want to and encourages businesses to develop age-friendly employment practices.

Apprenticeships are an important way for businesses to bring new talent into their organisation as well as to offer existing employees the opportunity to develop their careers, knowledge and skills. Our support for apprenticeships includes offering a wide range of apprenticeships and apprenticeship training within WSCC. The County Council also offer payment toward the costs of apprenticeship training through the Apprenticeship Levy.   

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