This week’s news in brief

Putting skills training first

Skills for Business, the Sector Skills Development Agency, is the new sponsor of the Personnel Today Awards Excellence in Training category. The Skills for Business network is made up of 25 Sector Skills Councils – each one an employer-led organisation tasked with reducing skills shortages and improving productivity. The sold-out awards ceremony takes place on 23 November at London’s Grosvenor House, with more than 1,200 guests booked for the biggest night on the HR calendar.

Three-way pitch for contract

Three bidders are in the running to provide a host of corporate services, including HR, to councils in the South West as part of a £360m contract. Capita, IBM and BT (working in conjunction with Carillion) have been shortlisted to set up a strategic service partnership with Somerset County Council and Taunton Deane Borough Council.

Universities fail on diversity

Colleges and universities are failing to give ethnic minority staff fair and equal treatment, according to the University and College Union. It is four years since the Race Relations Amendment Act required college and university employers to monitor and improve their procedures, but the union claims little has been done.

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