From education to employment

Staff Development Agreement with Museums, Libraries and Archives Council (MLA)

Lifelong Learning UK (LLUK) and the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council (MLA) have agreed to a collaboration that aims to attract and develop staff for libraries and archives.

The partnership brings together the LLUK, which is responsible for the career development of over one million UK employees, with the national development agency which advises the Government and acts on behalf of the museum, library and archive sector. These two organisations will work together for three years in order to widen and enhance staff career progression and development.

A Knowledge Driven Economy

Using the LLUK’s experience of working within community and work-based learning, and the agency’s expertise within the Further Education sector, the partnership aims to develop routes into careers in libraries, archives and museums, and offer wider access to training and career planning. This will be enhanced by extensive workforce data, and it is also hoped that the collaboration will increase diversity among the sector’s staff, and foster individual leadership skills.

David Ruse, Director of Libraries at the Westminster City Council, acknowledged that, in a knowledge-driven economy, the challenges facing libraries and archives have changed in recent years. In “an increasingly IT-based environment,” he said, “communities look to libraries for support and guidance in accessing information.” This has changed the service provided by libraries, and heightened the need for responsive staff. “We are pleased that through this partnership a new framework of staff competencies and qualifications can be developed which will assist us in redefining and developing the skills of our people,” he said.

Working Together in Developing Potential

Both organisations have welcomed the chance to work together to develop the workforce. Chris Batt, MLA Chief Executive, described the two organisations” shared “vision to empower learning and change in the libraries and archives sector. “MLA has supported LLUK since its creation and cementing our partnership through signing up to the three year work plan is the next natural step for both of us,” he said. “We”re very much looking forward to working together to achieve the ultimate goals of improving public access to collections and resources in our libraries and archives, and developing a diverse and knowledgeable workforce.”

LLUK Chief Executive David Hunter also hailed the partnership as a chance to make a positive change in the sector, both in the immediate and distant future. He described the plan as “an opportunity both to foster the career development of existing staff but also to create opportunities that will attract growing numbers of high calibre new entrants. We will work with our employers across the four countries of the UK in developing a top quality workforce, meeting both their needs and those of the wider economy.”

Jessica Brammar

Will this consign poor training opportunity in the sector to a dusty archive? Tell us in the FE Blog

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