The Economic Value of WorldSkills UK

The Economic Value of WorldSkills UK

Frontier’s independent assessment of WorldSkills UK’s activities has confirmed that WorldSkills UK is delivering significant economic return across all areas of their work. 

We found that WorldSkills UK’s activities deliver a return on investment for the taxpayer of £3.50 for every £1 of Department for Education investment, demonstrating high value for money. This also means that in the past two years they delivered benefits of between £53.6 million based on our investment from the Government of £15.3 million.  

The benefits to the taxpayer come from four main sources. 

The largest benefit is a direct upskilling effect of individuals participating in the skills competitions programme (national or international). The training received in combination with the competitive environment leads to improved labour market performance manifested in higher lifetime earnings. 

In addition to the direct upskilling of competitors, there are spill-over benefits, where participating learners share knowledge and inspire their peers, resulting in improved performance and earnings for the peers themselves. 

Outside of competitions based training, increased information about career prospects and career guidance translates to improved educational and job matching outcomes for learners, reducing dropout rates and enhancing employability and earnings over their lifetimes. 

Finally, through the work of the centre for excellence, higher teaching standards in Further Education (FE) and technical skills training improve learners' cognitive skills and educational outcomes, reducing the likelihood of them not being in education, employment, or training (NEET) and increasing their lifetime earnings. 

WorldSkills UK’s activities were found to have several further benefits that could not be quantified due to lack of available data. These are likely to generate additional value for the UK over and above what was included in the quantitative assessment: 

Research and insights activities promote global excellence in skills, sharing best practices, exploring trends, and benchmarking against other countries, benefiting young people, employers, and the economy. 

WorldSkills UK’s activities likely reduce skills gaps in the UK, particularly in occupations with significant gaps. 

Participation in WorldSkills UK activities enhances learners' skills and productivity, leading to increased tax revenues, improved competitiveness, and GDP growth. 

Training and development offered by the Centre of Excellence could reduce teacher turnover and recruitment costs for FE colleges.   

WorldSkills UK's membership in the WorldSkills network enhances the profile of UK skills, potentially boosting exports and attracting investment.  

Click here to read the report, ‘The Economic Value of World Skills UK’