Evaluation of Developing the Young Workforce Regional Groups


In 2015, the Scottish Government announced their intention to establish a series of Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) Regional Groups to help bridge the gap between education and employers, with the aim of improving young people's transitions from education into employment. By June 2017, 21 DYW Regional Groups had been established across Scotland. They aimed to provide leadership and a single point of contact and support to facilitate increased engagement between employers and education providers, particularly schools and colleges.

SQW was appointed by the Scottish Government to evaluate the effectiveness of the DYW Regional Groups through in-depth exploration of what was working well and where challenges remained in four regions (Ayrshire; Edinburgh, Midlothian and East Lothian; Inverness and Central Highland; and the North East). It was primarily a formative exercise designed to capture lessons to inform the next phase of development of the Regional Groups, as well as wider policy aimed at addressing youth unemployment. The work involved surveys, consultations and workshops with employers, schools and regional / national stakeholders.

The Groups were found to have been successful in creating a single point of contact for employers to engage with education, and for schools / colleges to engage with employers. They were also found to have engaged a high volume of employers in DYW activities. Whilst it was too early to make a full assessment of impact, the evaluation did find evidence of changed behaviour amongst employers, schools and colleges as a direct result of engagement with the Regional Groups, as well as some evidence of positive impacts on young people. The study identified a series of recommendations to inform the next phase of development of the Regional Groups.

The final report is available to download here.