Employer Investment Fund (EIF) and Growth and Innovation Fund (GIF) Programme Level Evaluation: Final Report

Tu T, Chhatralia K, Tipping S, Shah J, Hale C, Cox A, Marvell R | Briefing Paper  | UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES) | Apr 2016

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Ipsos MORI and the Institute for Employment Studies were commissioned to undertake a programme level evaluation of the Employer Investment Fund (EIF) and Growth and Innovation Fund (GIF).

This report presents the evaluation findings which draw on two strands of research:

  • An impact analysis using two waves of longitudinal survey with c.900 employers who have engaged in EIF and GIF activities and a matched comparison sample of c.900 non-participant employers.
  • Two waves of qualitative interviews comprising high level consultations with key national stakeholders and more detailed research with nine Delivery Partners to investigate the full range of activities developed and delivered by them. Interviews were also conducted with 56 employer beneficiaries in wave 1 and 52 employer beneficiaries in wave 2 across seven types of activities: Employment Brokerage; Apprenticeship Brokerage; Skills Diagnostics; Training Brokerage; Group Training Activities; and Networks.

The overall aims of the evaluation were:

  • to learn lessons about the delivery of the two investment funds, in order to enable improvements to the process for UKCES and the investees in building sustainable skills solutions
  • to provide an assessment of the impact of the funded projects on skills investment and business activity.

These two key aims were further supplemented by four specific objectives:

  • to develop an understanding of whether the investment projects were encouraging employers to adopt innovative training infrastructure solutions that more effectively met their skills needs
  • to understand the extent to which employers directly engaged with investment projects, increased their investment in workforce skills and increased their performance over and above what they might have done anyway
  • to assess whether investment projects were sustainable and embedded over the longer term
  • to inform gaps in UKCES's evidence on outcomes and impact.