DD2068 Team London SkillUp - approval for receipt of funds

Type of decision: 
Director's decision
Date signed: 
09 March 2017
Decision by: 
Jeff Jacobs, Head of Paid Service

Executive summary

In MD1526 approval was given for the establishment of the Team London Skill-Up programme. This programme provides free training and support for small charities in London on topics identified as most needed. 
Business partners provide this support and deliver two modules a year on their topic, plus an accompanying mentoring offer. They pay a cash value of £5k p.a. for a two year period plus substantial Value In Kind.
In DD1440 and DD1466 approval was requested to receive cash and in kind support from our previous module partners.  We are now developing 2 additional modules:  (i) Business strategy and planning from Elixirr and (ii) Technology from Microsoft. This DD requests approval to receive up to £20k cash value and up to £80k value-in-kind from these two new partner businesses to support the Team London SkillUp programme.


That the Executive Director of Communities and Intelligence approves:

1.    receipt of up to £10,000 cash value from Elixirr and up to £10,000 cash value from Microsoft; and

2.    receipt of value-in-kind of up to £40,000 from Elixirr and up to £40,000 from Microsoft.

Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background

Team London Skill-Up programme was previously agreed in MD1526 and then DD1440 and DD1466 covered previous receipt of funds.

Team London is committed to supporting small charities in London’s third sector, and without the services of the 22,500 small charities currently functioning in our city, millions of Londoners would lose vital support and services. Our Skill-Up programme provides training and support in the topic areas most needed by London’s small charities. The programme started in June 2015. 
We are very proud to be partnering with the business partners listed below and will provide the following training: 

CIPD                                             HR training

Twitter                                          Social Media training

Citi                                                Finance

Natixis                                          Preparing and securing Business Partnerships

Portland                                        Communications

Elixirr                                            Strategy and Business Planning

Microsoft                                      Using Technology

Objectives and expected outcomes

A general decline in funding and resources, but a growing need for those services, has resulted in many small charity staff having to multi-task across a number of functions, with little time or funds to take on the extra training so badly needed. The impact of this combination is that charities can find that they are less efficient than they would want to be, they cannot grow as quickly as they might like to, and their staff can find themselves frustrated, trying to learn by doing.
Team London wanted to address this issue, and based on research from the Foundation for Social Improvement (FSI) and focus groups with small charity staff, we were able to identify the key gaps in the training offer for this audience, and some key issues for the staff themselves around quality of training, costs and the time available to implement learning.  The Skill-UP programme was developed to address all these factors.   
The Skill-UP programme offers free high quality skill-sharing, delivered by business volunteers who are experts in their industry areas.  The unique selling point is that the programme includes both a practical toolkit with templates, tips and examples to take away, plus the most important element for this audience, post-training support, in the form of long term mentoring or post-training sessions to help implement the learning into the organisation.  The outcomes, measured by pre and post course and mentoring attendance, are increased knowledge and confidence in the topic areas covered, and the ability of the charitable organisation to manage that aspect of their work more effectively. For business delivery partners there is a development opportunity for staff both in the development of the materials and training module and the provision of mentoring afterwards, which provides opportunities to more junior staff to work with a sector they may not be familiar with and to carry out tasks that they would otherwise not be exposed to. .The Skill-UP programme now provides expert training in all of those areas that were identified as having the greatest need. 

Business support for SkillUp comes in the form of a small (£5k p.a.) cash contribution and substantial value-in-kind (“VIK”). This VIK consists of the time spent by staff on developing the training module, which includes spending time with sector focus groups, and in refining the materials post delivery of the module once feedback has been received. In addition the business often hosts the module, providing rooms and catering, as well as the staff time involved in delivery. Subsequently the business gives VIK through the time spent by staff in mentoring the charities and ensuring that implementation of learning can take place.

Partners receive marketing and promotional opportunities, for example at our International Volunteering conference on 5th December, SkillUP was prominently featured, in the form of a Blueprint for the programme which is available in both hard and soft copies and was distributed by attendees, participation from SKillUP business partners on conference panels to promote their contribution to the programme. It also features in our Impact report, which is used as a marketing and promotional asset for the team, and highlights the contribution of business partners.

Equality comments

Small charities in London support diverse communities with many different requirements. By enabling these charities to access high quality training and support we will be having a positive impact on equalities.  All training is accessible to those with access requirements and additional support needs and we are always careful to ensure that reasonable adjustments can be made.

Other considerations

The Skill-Up programme has worked with over 200 charities so far, and over the next 1-2 years will work with another 100. We have nearly 100 business mentors taking part in post course follow up.
The programme enables charities to be supported, build capacity and forge relationships with corporate partners. This strengthening of the sector and forming cross partner relationships is very much a priority for the Mayor and the Deputy Mayor for Social Integration, Social Mobility and Community Engagement, Matthew Ryder QC.

Financial comments

5.1    The total equates to £80,000 value-in-kind and £20,000 cash contribution allocated as per the table below. In return for the value-in-kind, project partners will receive marketing and publicity services; and staff development opportunities from the GLA for which the monetary value is equivalent of the deliverables that it is receiving, thus resulting in VAT charges on both sides. Consequently, the GLA and all the project partners/sponsors should supply VAT only invoices to ensure VAT is correctly accounted and paid for.

5.2    The total cash contributions and VIK detailed below:


2016-17 Income

2017-18 Income







Total cash contribution





2016-17 VIK

2017-18 VIK







Total VIK  contribution




Investment and Performance Board


Planned delivery approach and next steps



Procurement of contract [for externally delivered projects]


Announcement [if applicable]


Delivery Start Date [for project proposals]

Elixirr module in Feb/March 2017 and Microsoft module in January 2017

Delivery End Date [for project proposals] 2 modules will be delivered by each business partner, over a two year period, with exact dates to be confirmed

Likely to be December 2018

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