in Defence / Security

Applications open to join the UK shipbuilding Skills Delivery Group

Posted 17 January 2024

One of the most critical enablers of a thriving UK shipbuilding enterprise is a highly skilled workforce, to drive innovation and productivity across the industry and increase global competitiveness. Government and industry are working in partnership to ensure this priority is effectively addressed.

Image courtesy Ministry of Defence

In response to recommendations from the UK Shipbuilding Skills Taskforce Report, the National Shipbuilding Office is seeking to recruit a chair and members to serve in a newly established Skills Delivery Group to oversee and drive delivery of the recommendations of the UK Shipbuilding Skills Taskforce report and to be a continuous advocate for shipbuilding skills in the sector.

With a focus on delivery, the Skills Delivery Group will engage with employers, governments across the Union and educators nationwide: helping industry leverage the skills system across the UK to meet its needs; helping industry attract, retain and develop talent; promoting equality, diversity and inclusion and helping develop the skills of the future. These skills will also be required in light of forthcoming innovation and the transition to net zero.

RAdm Rex Cox – CEO, National Shipbuilding Office, said: "Ensuring the UK shipbuilding sector has access to the skills it needs is a priority. The Skills Delivery Group will work with government, industry and educators to continue the fantastic work of the UK Shipbuilding Skills Taskforce and implement the recommendations of their report. Continued collaboration between government and industry will ensure the sector has the skills necessary to deliver against our shared ambitions to grow and transform the enterprise."

Hon Captain Dr Paul Little CBE – Chair, UK Shipbuilding Skills Taskforce, said: "The Taskforce’s report set in motion the transformation of UK shipbuilding skills for both the medium and long term. The game-changing report called for a step change in action from industry, government and educators; it is heartening to therefore see the swift progress towards implementation. As the Taskforce is now stood down I am very pleased that the Skills Delivery Group will now implement the Taskforce’s recommendations and continue our role of championing skills within the UK shipbuilding sector."

The UK Shipbuilding Skills Taskforce (UKSST) was established by the Department for Education in July 2022 as part of the National Shipbuilding Strategy (NSbS) in order to build a picture of the shipbuilding industry’s skills needs, and to develop recommendations for how to address them.

The UKSST published its recommendations to government, industry and educators in September 2023 and concluded its work in December 2023. The government will issue a full response to all the recommendations made in the UK Shipbuilding Skills Taskforce’s report A Step Change in UK Shipbuilding Skills in the Spring.

Through the course of their work, the UKSST recognised the need for a body to provide strategic oversight and delivery for skills across all four nations of the UK beyond the end of the Taskforce and recommended that a skills delivery group be established.

In response, government is establishing the Skills Delivery Group as a sub-group of the Shipbuilding Enterprise for Growth (SEG). The SEG is the established interface for collaboration between government and industry on the implementation of the NSbS and the SDG will assume responsibility for the skills strand of this activity on behalf of the SEG.

The National Shipbuilding Office was set up to implement the refreshed National Shipbuilding Strategy (NSbS) and to provide a strategic oversight of all government activity across the shipbuilding enterprise. The NSO oversees all of government’s interests in UK shipbuilding and has a mandate to drive transformative change across the whole UK shipbuilding enterprise.

To find out more about the job, how to apply and Terms of Reference:



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