Employment and training & social investment | Big Society Capital
Employment and training
& social investment
K10
Investment Associate
Investment Associate

In November 2015, over half a million people in the UK had been unemployed for over 12 months.

We are interested in investing in sustainable opportunities that tackle long-term unemployment for adults and youth in the UK.

A number of groups are disproportionally represented in the unemployment statistics including disabled people, people over 50, ex-offenders, ex-service personnel, the homeless and certain ethnic minority groups. Additionally, nearly one million young people (between the ages of 16-24) are not in education, employment or training. Whilst this age group makes up only 13% of the UK population, it accounts for almost 40% of all those who are unemployed.

Being unemployed for over a year can have a significant impact on a person’s confidence, wellbeing and finances, and can lead to them being excluded socially. Meanwhile for Government, unemployment comes at a great expense with the Jobseeker’s Allowance and Employment and Support Allowance benefit payments representing a direct cost to the government of £5.3 billion and £9.6 billion respectively in 2013/2014.

Our employment induction slides provide further information. 

 

Social investment can improve employment outcomes for these groups in multiple ways

Social investment can provide long term, flexible growth capital to help scale sustainable and impactful models that tackle unemployment, to allow organisations to take a more holistic approach to their strategic and operation planning
Social investment can provide risk capital to innovative preventative programmes that reduce the likelihood of young people not going into further education, employment of training, and support new ways of working
Social investment can provide working capital to charities and social enterprises, a crucial part in being able to bid for and deliver on more public service contracts in the employment space

We are particularly keen to support

  • Innovative models that trial new ways of improving outcomes for job-seekers with complex needs 
  • Models that focus on prevention and early intervention by improving employment support in schools or support the transition from school to work such as Teens & Toddlers
  • Apprenticeship brokerage models that create opportunities for disadvantaged groups
  • Models that support greater corporate engagement in the employment space (see the Business Impact Challenge for more ideas)
  • Models that enable social organisations to play a greater role in delivering employment services by building their capacity to win and deliver contracts

Please reach out to us if you would like to explore these ideas further. We are particularly looking to partner with organisations bring specialist knowledge of specific social issues and strong networks to scale viable interventions, such as Macmillan Cancer Support who co-developed the Care and Wellbeing Fund.

Future investment ideas

Visit our future investment ideas page to see what new ideas we're working on.

Our Investments

Local Solutions

Social Impact Bond to improve accommodation and work outcomes for a group of young, homeless people with complex circumstances

Franchising Works

Finance to enable unemployed and financially excluded people to set up their own franchise businesses
Nesta Impact Investments

Nesta Impact Investments

Risk capital for social ventures using technology and innovation to support ageing, educational attainment and sustainable communities

Energise Social Impact Bond

Social Impact Bond to help young people improve their educational attainment and reduce youth unemployment.

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Social Investment Insights

Research | 5 December 2014

This Social Investment Insights paper focuses on how social investment can be used to tackle long-term unemployment for people aged 25 and over.