Connecting Life Sciences and Education

A blog post from Andrew Croydon, ABPI Director of Education and Examination Policy and Partnerships

The life sciences sector is an exciting and dynamic industry filled with many opportunities for people seeking to make a meaningful impact on society throughout their careers.

The relentless advance of new innovations and scientific practices requires the continual renewal of ways of working, with expanding areas of expertise needed to maintain progress. Key to any success is a skilled and knowledgeable workforce.

However, attracting and nurturing the essential talent required is no easy task. Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs), which make up 99% of registered businesses in the UK, often face recruitment challenges in finding employees with the right skills and knowledge.

Many SMEs want to be proactive about engaging with schools and young talent but find it all too daunting and simply don’t know where to start. Here I explore the benefits and importance of such engagement, highlighting how it can be beneficial for businesses in the sector, alongside pointing to a range of ideas to help businesses get started.

Early schools engagement
Engaging with local schools and young people from an early age can open their eyes to the exciting work of the life sciences sector and can support them in making more informed career decisions later on in life.

Making the connection early also means we can create a pipeline of potential talent who are not only enthusiastic about life sciences but are also well-prepared when it comes to looking for roles.

Upskill and re-skill
The evolving nature of the sector means that staying competitive requires constant adaption to new technologies and practices.

Engaging with schools and educational institutions can provide an existing workforce with flexible upskilling and reskilling opportunities and allows employees to stay ahead of the curve and discover new avenues for growth within a business.

Navigating the Education and Skills Landscape
Understanding the intricacies of the education and skills system in England can be a complex task. That's where resources like the Education Landscape: A Guide for Employers come into play.

Developed in collaboration with organisations including the Federation of Small Businesses, Confederation of British Industry, British Chamber of Commerce, and Institute of Directors, this guide serves as a beacon for businesses seeking to engage with education.

Drawing on real-life case studies, the guide offers a clear, concise overview of the education landscape, the skills opportunities available and the benefits they can bring to businesses.

In recognising the vital role SMEs play in the UK's economy, there is a national commitment to make the education and skills landscape more accessible to them.

  • Skills
  • Education

Last modified: 20 September 2023

Last reviewed: 20 September 2023