Talent Match Evaluation: A Final Assessment

In 2013 The Big Lottery Fund (now known as The National Lottery Community Fund) launched Talent Match, an innovative employment programme that supported young people aged 18 – 24 who found it challenging to get into the job market.

A final evaluation of the Talent Match programme hase been produced by the Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research (CRESR) at Sheffield Hallam University, the University of Birmingham, the University of Warwick and Cambridge Economic Associates. The report can be accessed via the following link: https://blogs.shu.ac.uk/talentmatch/reports/   

Greater Manchester was chosen as one of 21 areas in which the Talent Match programme would operate. GMCVO was the lead partner in Greater Manchester Talent Match. The programme, which ran between 2013 and 2018, built from the premise that young people had talent which could be developed to the point of employment.

GM Talent Match's personalised package of support enabled 2,000 participants to progress along a pathway towards work lasting up to 24 months.

Some of the key findings include: 

  • Young people, especially those facing multiple barriers (including low skills, limited employment experience, homelessness and low levels of wellbeing) will continue to need support regardless of the state of the national economy and the level of unemployment. 

  • Talent Match participants moving into work reported high levels of job satisfaction and  helped support participants to improve their wellbeing: 70 per cent of those who gained a job reported improved life satisfaction; and 60 per cent for those who did not gain a job.  

  • At least £3.08 of public value has been generated for every £1 spent on Talent Match programme delivery. This means that there is a positive social benefit associated with Talent Match.

  • Talent Match demonstrated the benefits of taking a holistic and personcentred approach to supporting young people and this recognised that the model of progression, for those furthest from the labour market, varied in time, support and the nature of outcomes (both employment and wellbeing).

  • The use of labour market data combined with local intelligence from young people and employers needs to be brought together more systematically to design and then refine labour market interventions.


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