Mayor of West Yorkshire announces statement on CEIAG

Tracy Brabin, Mayor of West Yorkshire has announced a statement on Careers Education, Information and Guidance for West Yorkshire and asks providers bidding for the Yorkshire and Humber National Careers Service contract to work strategically with the Combined Authority to ensure we can support them in improving outcomes for West Yorkshire’s diverse residents and labour market.

9 February 2022

As the Mayor of West Yorkshire, I pledged to prioritise skills and training to ensure that everyone in West Yorkshire has the skills they need to secure work.

Through its key strategies of the Strategic Economic Framework, including the Employment and Skills Framework, and the Economic Recovery Plan, the West Yorkshire Combined Authority has also prioritised a need to improve access to and the quality of careers education, information advice and guidance (CEIAG).

The Future-Ready Skills Commission also recommended that everyone should have the right to quality information and advice about jobs and careers, no matter what their stage in life.

West Yorkshire needs a gold-standard careers system, rooted in local information and careers support that contributes to individual motivation, career readiness and resilience, employability and social capital.

Quality, impartial careers advice and guidance is vital in supporting individuals of all ages, life stages and backgrounds to make informed decisions and fulfil their personal ambitions.

Despite its clear value, access to careers support is unequal. Much of the system operates on self-referral or digital access, which can adversely affect particular groups, including females, lower attainers, individuals from working class backgrounds, and those from minority ethnicities.

The National Careers service is a key service in the West Yorkshire careers landscape. The prime contractor for the Yorkshire and Humber contract has the opportunity to provide access to a joined-up, holistic and personal service that aligns with existing local services to meet a range of needs and allows residents to take advantage of the full ranges of job roles available in West Yorkshire.


The Combined Authority and its partners are seeking to form a strategic partnership as part of the Yorkshire and the Humber National Careers Service contract. 

The benefits of strategic partnership include:

  • an improved customer journey through the development of more effective referral routes and signposting through West Yorkshire services
  • a better understanding of the landscape and individual support offer, in turn leading to supporting the achievement of contract outputs. This will be informed by the West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s partnerships with:
    • The five West Yorkshire local authorities, who have a unique placemaking role which means that they are best placed to offer insight into the needs of their districts.
    • the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership, which has a unique relationship with the region’s businesses.
  • increased alignment of funded programmes across the WY geography in a complex landscape, leading to improved outcomes for residents of West Yorkshire. Examples of West Yorkshire level delivery programmes for individuals include, but are not limited to:
    • Employment Hub - Linking all age groups with training/ retraining, employment/ apprenticeship opportunities and self-employment. Also provides businesses with access to employment/ recruitment support and a talent matching service for individuals seeking employment.
    • Adult Education Budget – supporting West Yorkshire residents who are unemployed to gain sustained employment and increase skills for employed individuals to progress whilst in work.
    • Skills Connect - Courses for Adults to retrain and upskill with a focus on employment opportunities in West Yorkshire.
    • FutureGoals – inspirational all-age careers platform showcasing opportunities across West Yorkshire.

As part of this strategic partnership, the successful provider will commit to:

  • Quarterly reporting and information sharing in relation to the contract.
  • Providing Combined Authority senior officer representation at the steering group.
  • Regular engagement with Local Authority employment and skills leads to differentiate the place-based offer.
  • Proactive engagement with the West Yorkshire skills programmes summarised above and Local Authority activity, including through cross-referrals which create a joined-up, inclusive offer.

As part of this strategic partnership, West Yorkshire Combined Authority will commit to:

  • Sharing of information to inform strategic decision making and commissioning.
  • Regular attendance at steering group meetings by a nominated Combined Authority senior officer.
  • Facilitate and support regular engagement with Local Authority employment and skills leads.
  • Engaging with the successful provider to create effective cross-referral routes between the National Careers Service and the West Yorkshire skills programmes outlined above.

Providers intending to bid for the Yorkshire and Humber National Careers Service contract for delivery from June 2022 are asked to contact Catherine Lunn, Skills Funding Manager,