Of course, the nature of employability has changed, it is not what it is used to be. Is it not so much of a stand-alone business now; it cuts across sectors including health, skills and justice, for example, Prison Education (PEF) and ESFA contracts. Fortunately, this reflects my career as I have spent many years working in the private, public and third sector across elements of all of these.
Having recently joined Seetec, I have enjoyed talking to people and understanding their story, how they have landed here and have come straight into a bidding round of ESFA contracts so it has been a very busy couple of months for sure. However, my role will see me represent the employability division at board level and help the business grow in next 12 – 18 months and I’m making it my personal mission to ensure this is the case across the board.
It’s truly an honour for me to start in a role I am so passionate about working in and supporting a sector that truly makes a difference to the lives of individuals, their families and communities. As the Chair of Genius Within, a community interest company that supports people with neurodiversity and disabilities, I know from first-hand experience what it takes for individuals to share their story. The workplace can be a scary place when you’ve got a disability and I’m truly dedicated to breaking down the stigma to help employability prospects for people from all walks of life.
Seetec have a strong and respected heritage in employability and the board have been absolute in their commitment to continue to invest in this sector which is certainly not the unanimous approach amongst primes, particularly amongst those that that did not secure Work Health Programme. This was a significant part of my decision in joining Seetec – it is important to me personally that we are committed to staying in this sector.
Right now, we are collaborating with other parts of the organisation to try to win contracts for the business; we’ve bid with some fantastic regional partners for ESFA Skills Support Contracts and are preparing for further opportunities in areas where we currently have a strong local presence including London, Greater Manchester, The Midlands and the South East.
It is critical for Seetec’s ongoing success that we that we work hard to exit Work Programme and Work Choice brilliantly to ensure we finish as we started, with the aim to be a quality provider with a strong focus on customer outcomes. We will have to balance this priority whilst juggling new business to maximise opportunities and grow.
Chris Harrison is the newly appointed Director of Operations at Seetec. Based in Essex, his role ensures operations and business development across the company are joined up and ready for any upcoming and future opportunities. As well as being the chair of Genius Within, Chris is a trustee of ADD-vance, a local ADHD/Autism charity based in Hertfordshire.