Richard Macfarlane

Richard Macfarlane is an independent researcher and consultant with 30 years experience of local economic development and urban regeneration. He has wide experience of 'local labour in construction', 'intermediate labour market' programmes, and other initiatives to target the employment and training impact of public investment.

Richard Macfarlane
Research and Project Development Ltd.
Richard Macfarlane
149 Chamberlayne Road
London NW10 3NT

Tel & Fax: +44 [0]20-8964-2416
Mobile: 077688 93731

Targeted Recruitment & Training

Maximising social inclusion from local investment

Including TR&T requirements in contracts and agreements can:

- Maximise jobs for disadvantaged groups from public and private investment;
- Provide business opportunities for small and medium-sized enterprises;
- Maintain 'a level playing field' in competitive tendering;
- Ensure compliance with UK and EC procurement policy and rules;
- Increase value for money from public expenditure;
- Demonstrate a commitment to disadvantaged communities.

Many public bodies have a policy commitment to maximise job, training and business opportunities for the communities they serve. They may also want to ensure that their actions benefit people facing particular problems in the labour market. This can be described as a targeted recruitment and training (TR&T) policy.

Public bodies that don`t take action to implement a TR&T approach may be making one of the following assumptions:

- any local investment will generate opportunities and these will automatically trickle-down to their local community,
- providing people facing problems in the labour market with improved skills and employability is sufficient to help them obtain sustained employment;
- opportunities for the target groups will be achieved by developing good relationships with employers, possibly leading to voluntary TR&T agreements.

Despite an evidence-based policy environment there is little to suggest that the trickle-down or voluntary agreement approaches do maximise the opportunities for target communities arising from major developments, or that training/information alone will help them work their way out of poverty. Some good outcomes may be achieved from some developments for a period of time. However, the inclusion of TR&T requirements in contracts and agreements can help secure improved and measured outcomes for a sustained period of time.