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North West Regional College has joined forces with the five other further education colleges in Northern Ireland to officially launch the ‘Let’s Do Business’ initiative.

Let’s Do Business, supported by the Department for the Economy, can help local businesses boost their competitiveness and unlock their full potential by linking with their nearest Further Education (FE) college to help recruit talented people, reskill and upskill their existing staff or to access expertise in innovation and research.

During a launch event held at Allstate NI in Belfast, Permanent Secretary at the Department for the Economy Noel Lavery also announced that NWRC has been designated as a curriculum hub for Health and Social care.

Leo Murphy, Principal and Chief Executive of NWRC said:

“The FE sector is committed to creating a globally competitive economy. On a day-to-day basis we are working with businesses right across NI – from the large multi-nationals such as AE Global and E&I Engineering, to the SMEs and micro businesses which are the very heart of our local economy.  Through collaboration with the FE sector, businesses can improve productivity, innovation, and creativity to help support a more competitive local economy.

“We have a long history of delivering for business in the local area. With Let’s Do Business and the Curriculum Hubs, we take this capability a step further. We are working with local companies every day to improve productivity, innovation and creativity. Our clear message is, we are ready to deliver for local SMEs and micro-businesses right up to multi-nationals – Let’s Do Business.”

Permanent Secretary at the Department for the Economy Noel Lavery highlighted the benefits available for local business:

He said: “The network of Further Education colleges in Northern Ireland contains a deep well of talent that can be a hugely valuable resource for local businesses.

“With the support of the Department, the FE colleges offer an opportunity for direct collaboration that can result in companies recruiting and training the skilled people they need in order to compete and grow.

“Whether it be in IT, hospitality, engineering, retail, a start-up or a well-established venture, every type of business can benefit and gain a competitive edge by boosting their skills base or accessing the knowledge, research and innovation capability that exists in abundance in our colleges.

“I am very pleased that the Department has designated each of the six local colleges as hubs for a different business sector. Each hub will act as a focus of knowledge and expertise for a priority occupational area while also working collaboratively with the other five colleges.

“This approach will enable employers to direct their queries to the lead college hub that is best suited to their business sector and with the assurance that their local college will be able to deliver the training and education they need for their business.”

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