What is the Workforce Development Fund?
The Workforce Development Fund provides employers with the opportunity to invest in their employees’ personal development and career progression. You can claim up to £2,000 per learner each funding year to support their learning needs – from listed qualifications, to training programs and digital modules.
Your claim covers all associated costs, such as employee salaries whilst they are training, coaching/mentoring costs, venue costs and wage replacements. Investing in your workforce is not only beneficial for your people but also for your business – make sure you take advantage of this great opportunity!
There are two routes, depending on your location. Sign up before 28 February 2023 and claims must be submitted to Skills for Care by 31 May 2023 in order to access the fund. Make sure you’re well-informed and act quickly, so you don’t miss out on this opportunity to upskill yourself or your team. Take action today and start making progress towards a better future!
How to claim the Workforce Development Fund
If you’re in one of the listed local authority areas, Skills for Care makes it easy to apply directly. With a view of the list of eligible areas, you can quickly determine if you’re eligible. Making informed decisions can be easier when you know all the facts and applying with us is an obvious choice – so look and see if you qualify today.
While the WDF is only open to certain local authorities, this doesn’t mean that employers in other areas have to miss out – instead, they can join and take part in employer-led partnerships.
Care partnerships bring together employers from a variety of backgrounds and locations to discuss and address their individual development needs, enabling them to collectively access the resources and funding available through the WDF. With programme applications set to close on 28 February 2023, now is the perfect time for organisations to come together and create a lasting legacy of mutual benefit.
Deadlines for submissions
For a successful claim, you must have completed and submitted your declaration form before 28 February 2023 – which has already passed. To ensure your Adult Social Care Workforce Data Set (ASC-WDS) account meets WDF requirements by 31 March 2023 is also imperative. Finally, claims need to be submitted to Skills for Care by 31 May 2023. Keep informed about the latest updates and don’t miss out on this great opportunity!
Can I use any training provider?
As an employer, you have the freedom to select the learning and development provider that best meets your needs. While a lead organisation for a WDF partnership may offer training, using their services is not mandatory, nor do they have the authority to require employers to join their WDF partnership or use their training provision. This would make up a conflict of interests and is strictly prohibited.
If you wish to make use of a learning provider, our endorsed provider directory can help you find one suitable for you. Skills for Care endorsement is a sign of quality for adult social care sector-related learning and development.
It is important to note that providers cannot promise “free” training funded by the WDF. All claims related to the WDF have to be made either to Skills for Care, or through your partnership as the employer.
Is there a criteria to apply for WDF?
When applying for Workforce Development Fund (WDF) funding, employers need to familiarise themselves with the rules and requirements of the specific funding source being accessed. The general principle of WDF is that no employer should be able to make a profit from their employees’ training. Employers may not claim the same cost from multiple sources of funding; this is double funding and is not allowed.
Employers must ensure they do not claim more funding than what it actually costs them, giving consideration to costs such as course fees, assessment costs, salaries of employees while they undertake the learning, expert witness testimonies and backfill if necessary. It is important that employers have records in place to evidence any costs they claim from the WDF fund. This fund operates as a retrospective funding stream, meaning all costs must have been incurred before claiming a contribution from said fund.
The required evidence for claiming WDF for qualifications, learning programmes and digital learning modules is a copy of the learner’s certificate, which includes the criteria advertised on the official website.