Helping to bridge the skills gap

Building Our Skills (BOS) the industry driven campaign to create a wider awareness of Fenestration and help towards bridging the industry’s skills gap, has developed partnerships with two government supported programmes, which will help employers communicate with schools, colleges and ex-armed forces personnel.

For the education sector, Inspiring the Future, run by the Education and Employers charity, has agreed a partnership with BOS to help industry individuals to volunteer and share their work experience with students at local schools and colleges.

The national organisation uses an online matchmaking service that allows schools to find volunteers to support their students, and allows volunteers to scope out their own depth of involvement. Volunteering can be done by an individual or as a business and all types of experiences are valuable to the scheme, from apprentice to CEO.

Once chosen, a company or individual can get involved in a range of activities, from classroom talks or assemblies, to inviting students to visit their business premises. The organisation also supports students, teachers and parents to increase their understanding and awareness of apprenticeships and, through Inspiring Governance, they connect skilled volunteers interested in becoming school governors and trustees with local schools in need of such roles.

The second partnership, Career Transition Programme (CTP), is an MoD initiative that supports individuals leaving military positions. CTP gives advice and guidance to the Royal Navy, Royal Airforce, Army and Royal Marines, and assists with the first three years of their transition period into employment.

“These new partnerships with the two organisations provided a fantastic opportunity for employers in the fenestration industry to engage with newcomers,” Stephanie Tague, head of BOS, said.

“Education and Employers has already seen that 74% of students who have engaged with their volunteers from the work place have an increased motivation to study harder.

“Involvement from the industry will give youngsters a wider understanding of our industry, and with 14,000 individuals leaving the armed forces annually the two partnership will go a long way to supporting our mission.”