Milestone for employers’ network

27 June, 2023 4:37 pm

More than 100 businesses have signed up to Harrogate College Employers’ Network.

The group has just welcomed its 103rd member – representing a four-fold increase since its first meeting in 2021.

The network was set up to create a direct link between the district’s businesses and the college so that training and work opportunities could be tailored accordingly.

That has resulted in closer collaboration which has brought a range of benefits to both parties.

Building something special

Principal Danny Wild said: “It’s fantastic to see the network growing so fast. To have gained more than 100 members in under two years is a real achievement – and a sign that we’re building something special here.

“The feedback we gain from businesses is invaluable and helps us identify and address any gaps in our courses, so we can keep ahead of the curve in terms of meeting emerging training needs.

“Our students also benefit from meeting employers when they come along to support our events, like recruitment fairs, or give guest talks – and this in turn helps them secure work placements or apprenticeships.

“Our business partners, meanwhile, get the opportunity to directly influence our curriculum to ensure it’s delivering the training, and future workforce, they need. They also get some great networking and free advertising opportunities, so it’s a win-win.”

A network that sets the college apart

One of the network’s many businesses is Boroughbridge-based ATM Ltd – contractors in vegetation management, fencing, landscaping and ecology. HR administrator, Kelly Thomas, said: “We appreciate and support the working relationship we have with the college and its employers’ network.

“We have worked out that the best way to grow our workforce is by identifying someone who has an interest in our industry, investing in their development, and nurturing their progression.

“We aim to do this through apprenticeships and encouraging those leaving college to consider a career at ATM – and that’s where the network comes into its own, and sets Harrogate College apart from others we work with.”

Other local employers can find out more when the network holds its next meeting – which includes lunch – on Thursday 6 July. Places can be reserved at .