Government’s £28m advertising campaign to promote skills helpline yields just 9,000 calls

EXCLUSIVE: The government’s multi-million pound ad campaign to drive up UK skills has attracted just 9,000 calls to the national helpline in two months – described as “disappointing” by marketing analysts.

The Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills launched the £28m three-year campaign – ‘Our future. It’s in our hands’ – in July, featuring TV, radio and online advertising to generate an “unprecedented desire for learning” in the UK.

The campaign aims to get individuals and employers to ring a national helpline (0800 011 30 30) to find out how they could improve their skills.

The Leitch Review warned last year that the scale of the skills crisis facing the UK meant two million extra adults needed to gain A-levels by 2020.

But the Learning and Skills Council (LSC) admitted it had received just 9,072 calls to the specially set-up helpline and 79,296 hits on the campaign website since 9 July.

The LSC insisted these figures had exceeded targets, but refused to disclose what these targets were.

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