No One Left Behind (Experimental Statistics)
The Code of Practice for Statistics describes experimental statistics as ‘a subset of newly developed or innovative official statistics undergoing evaluation, that are published in order to involve users and stakeholders in the assessment of their suitability and quality at an early stage’.
Users should be aware that experimental statistics will potentially have a wider degree of uncertainty and require extra caution when interpreting results. We continue to work with data suppliers to improve the accuracy and quality of returns with the aim of removing the experimental badge. Please see the data quality section in background information for more details.
No One Left Behind is a strategy for placing people at the centre of the design and delivery of employability services. The transition to this new approach, delivered through a partnership agreement between Scottish and Local Government, commenced on 1 April 2019.
The No One Left Behind approach moves away from funding and delivering a number of separate and distinct employability programmes, to a more flexible approach. Scottish and Local Government are working with third and private sector to deliver support which aims to be more joined-up and responsive to the needs of individuals of all ages and to local labour market conditions.
The support provided may vary from short, focused interventions or longer term support, dependent upon individual circumstances. Participants can access the support they require on an ongoing basis and can engage and disengage at times that best suit their needs. Individuals can self-refer to No One Left Behind support, or be referred through a variety of channels, including educational providers, Local Authorities, third sector organisations, Jobcentre Plus, and other local services.
Since April 2019, a range of Scottish Government funding has been made available to Local Government partners as the scope of delivery under No One Left Behind expanded over time. This includes funding for the initial phase of No One Left Behind (April 2019), the Parental Employability Support Fund (February 2020) and the Young Person’s Guarantee (November 2020). Since February 2022, the experimental statistics in this publication have included people supported by the totality of these funds. The funding aims to provide support for people of all ages, with a range of differing characteristics and circumstances, including parents, who need help on their journey towards work.
Shared Measurement Framework
The first SMF publication was released in April 2022 and subsequently updated in December 2022 to reflect work undertaken with Local Authorities during the summer of 2022 to agree and finalise the new data template.
The initial data recommendations built on existing data collection practice and activity that was in place between Local and Scottish Government, formalising key data items collected around the ‘progression’ theme. The new data template is further aligned with the ‘reach’ and ‘progression’ themes of the SMF and the data published in this report will evolve to reflect this in the future.
The flexible, person-centred support No One Left Behind seeks to put in place acknowledges that participants may experience support differently, based on their individual circumstances and needs – for example, being able to disengage and re-engage in support as required. As a result, participant journeys will differ in nature and pace, and progression and achievements will vary based on what a positive outcome means to that individual. This means broadening our understanding of success from a focus on job outcomes to focus on the actual steps taken and progress made towards work.
The SMF publication is not a final product and more work is required to develop certain areas and themes. They will be particularly important to help us understand the journeys and achievements of those who are furthest away from the labour market and to develop the range of data that we publish.
We first published statistics on the achievements of those supported by No One Left Behind in February 2021 for year 1 participants, derived from the aggregate data that was collected during that period. Since then we have developed year 1 data and combined it with data collected quarterly for subsequent periods, which has allowed us to provide more detailed information for year 1 participants, including their achievements. It should be noted that the flexibility of the No One Left Behind approach allows people to come in and out of support as often as is needed, so the time between the initial start date and that to achieve certain progression outcomes can vary considerably.
Note that the experimental statistics in this publication relate only to Scottish Government funded activity and do not report on the entirety of employability related activity in each Local Authority area.
Reach of Services: Who are we reaching and what challenges do they face?
SMF Theme 1 - Reach: Employability services are reaching all those who need support to progress towards, move into and sustain fair work.
A total of 39,632 people started receiving support from April 2019 to March 2023. The number of people receiving support has increased over time; 2,818 in year 1, 4,724 in year 2, 14,423 in year 3 and 17,667 in year 4. In the most recent quarter (January – March 2023) 4,665 people started to receive support.
Most people receiving support through No One Left Behind were aged under 25 (64%; 25,545). Of these, 18,388 (72%) were aged 15-19 and 7,157 (28%) were aged 20-24. The remaining 13,763 (35%) participants were aged 25 or over, with a similar proportion aged 25-34 (36%; 4,988) and 35-49 (42%; 5,741), while only 22% (3,024) were aged 50 or over. Age was unknown for less than 1% (324) of participants.
Figure 2 shows increases for both the under 25 and 25 and over age groups over time, with peak participation seen in January – March 2022 (under 25) and January – March 2023 (25 and over). The latest quarter shows 2,604 (56%) people under 25 and 2,021 (43%) people aged 25 and over accessed support. The gap between these age groups has narrowed each year.
It should be noted that the large increase in participation of under 25s seen between January – March 2021 coincides with the introduction of additional funding to support young people.
Figure 2: Participants receiving employability support, by quarter and age (unknowns less than 30 are not visible), April 2019 – March 2023
Of the 39,632 people who started to receive support between April 2019 and March 2023, 17,158 (43%) were female and 22,174 (56%) male. Sex was unknown for 1% (300) of participants. The proportion of female participants has increased from 41% in year 1 to 47% in year 2, before declining to 44% in year 3 and then again to 42% in year 4. The highest proportion of female participants receiving support in a single quarter was 54% (April – June 2020).
However, there are marked sex differences by age. The youngest (15-19) and oldest (50+) age groups have the lowest proportion of females at 37% and 38% respectively, however for the middle age groups, 25-34 (56%) and 35-49 (59%), the sex difference reverses and females account for the highest proportion of participants.
Trans status is reported in this report for the first time. This is a new variable included in the new data reporting template since October 2022 and as such will only be available for participants starting on or after the 1st October 2022. This question is voluntary.
A total of 129 people have responded yes to the question on trans status. Of these, 56 have identified as a trans man, 42 as non-binary, 19 as a trans woman, with the remaining 12 people choosing the “other” option.
Overall, ethnic minority groups have accounted for 5% (2,114) of participants since April 2019. The proportion of minority ethnic participants has varied across years with the highest proportion (6%) in year 4 and the lowest (3%) in year 1. In the most recent quarter (January – March 2023), the proportion was 6%.
However, there are age differences; with a higher proportion of minority ethnic participants in the 25 and over group (9%) compared with those under 25 (3%).
These figures should be used with caution as some percentages are based on small numbers and the proportion of unknowns can vary across time periods.
Overall, 14% of participants accessing support reported having a disability (see Disability section in background information for disability definition). The proportion of participants reporting a disability has been fairly consistent with the exception of a marked decrease across year 2 to 10% before increasing to 13% in year 3, and increasing again to 16% in year 4. It should be noted that year 2 covered the first year of the pandemic which may be a factor for the noted decrease in that year. In the most recent quarter (January – March 2023), the proportion was 18%.
Unlike with sex and ethnicity, there is little variation between younger (under 25; 14%) and older (25 and over; 16%) age groups.
These figures should be used with caution as some percentages are based on very small numbers and the proportion of unknowns can vary across time periods.
Figure 3: Percentage of people supported through No One Left Behind, broken down by equality characteristic group, April 2019 – March 2023
Please note that parents are a subgroup of all participants supported during the period April 2020 to March 2023 (year 2 onwards). Of the 36,814 people who started to receive support from year 2, 7,967 (22%) were parents. The number of parents has generally increased reaching a high of 1,224 (26%) parents in the most recent quarter (January - March 2023). This was the joint highest proportion of parents in a single quarter, alongside April – June 2020.
Figure 4: Parents starting to receive employability support, by quarter, April 2020 – March 2023
Most parents are aged 25 and over (84%; 6,727), with the majority consistently in the 35-49 years age group (44%; 3,535). The proportion of parents is lowest for the youngest (15-19 year olds) (3%; 262) and oldest (50 and over) (8%; 624) age groups.
Sex differences are reversed and more pronounced in the parent subgroup (74%; 5,875 female) compared to all participants (43% female). Females have accounted for a significantly higher proportion of parents across the period; however, the proportion of male parents accessing support has generally increased over time, accounting for 17% of parents receiving support in April - June 2020, increasing to 30% in the latest quarter. The highest proportion observed to date was 31% in October – December 2022.
Of parents accessing support through No One Left Behind, 11% (905) were from minority ethnic groups. This has fluctuated greatly across time periods and caution is required as some percentages are based on very small numbers and the proportion of unknowns can vary across time periods.
Overall, 14% (1,140) of parents reported having a disability. The proportion of parents reporting a disability has remained fairly stable over years 2 (11%) and 3 (12%) increasing to 17% during year 4. It was 21% in the most recent quarter.
Figure 5: Percentage of parents supported through No One Left Behind, broken down by equality characteristic group, April 2020 – March 2023
Priority Family Groups
There were 1,224 parents in the most recent quarter (January – March 2023). Of these, the following groups were observed in terms of parents and those from families at highest risk of being affected by child poverty (some adults may appear in one or more of these family groups):
- 254 (21%) were disabled,
- 690 (56%) were lone parents,
- 103 (8%) were mothers aged under 25 and 28 (2%) were fathers aged under 25,
- 256 (21%) were parents with three or more children,
- 90 (7%) had a child aged under 12 months, and,
- 216 (18%) had a disabled child or adult within the family (this refers to any other disabled adult within the family, not adults who are participants).
Overall, of the 7,967 parents receiving support since year 2:
- 1,140 (14%) were disabled,
- 4,758 (60%) were lone parents,
- 857 (11%) were mothers aged under 25 and 352 (4%) were fathers aged under 25,
- 1,867 (23%) were parents with three or more children,
- 766 (10%) had a child aged under 12 months, and,
- 975 (12%) had a disabled child or adult within the family (this refers to any other disabled adult within the family, not adults who are participants).
The proportion of lone parents has remained consistent across year 3 (59%) and year 4 (59%), after an initial reduction from year 2 (63%). The proportion of parents that are mothers under 25 has been decreasing across years, from 15% in year 2 to 8% in year 4.
Please see Tackling Child Poverty Priority Families Overview (opens in a new window) for further information on the priority family groups and their definitions. Information has been collected based on these family groups.
Progression of Participants: What are the achievements of those supported by No One Left Behind so far?
SMF Theme 2 - Progression: To enable an individual’s progression towards fair work and sustained employment. Considering aspects such as improving well-being, confidence and motivation, maintaining or re-engaging with support, and developing aspirations and skills.
Of the 39,632 people supported under the No One Left Behind approach between April 2019 and March 2023, 12,690 people (32%) entered employment. Of those that entered employment; 5,259 people (41%) were supported by a subsidy to do so, 1,693 people (13%) started modern apprenticeships and 144 people (1%) entered self-employment.
Additionally, 5,477 people supported (14%) entered further or higher education or training, 4,735 people (12%) gained a qualification, 1,980 people (5%) started work experience opportunities, 572 people (1%) started volunteering and 162 people (less than 1%) re-engaged with school.
Figure 6: Outcomes achieved by No One Left Behind participants, April 2019 – March 2023
Please see background information for more detail on outcome definitions and criteria.
Please note, the following statistics on parents are from year 2 (April 2020) onwards. Of the 7,967 parents supported under the No One Left Behind approach, 1,918 parents (24%) started employment. Of those that started employment; 363 parents (19%) were supported by a subsidy to do so, 59 parents (3%) started modern apprenticeships and 66 parents (3%) entered self-employment.
Additionally, 742 parents supported (9%) entered further or higher education or training, 1,000 parents (13%) gained a qualification, 176 parents (2%) started work experience opportunities and 78 parents (1%) started volunteering.
Figure 7: Outcomes achieved by No One Left Behind participants identified as parents, April 2020 – March 2023
Please see background information for more detail on outcome definitions and criteria.
Progression split by age is reported in this publication for the first time.
A total of 9,332 people aged under 25 entered employment. This is 36% of all under 25 participants. For those aged 25 and over, 3,417 entered employment. This is 25% of all participants aged 25 and over.
Of those people aged under 25 entering employment, 4,340 (47%) were supported by a subsidy to do so, while this was the case for 916 (27%) of those aged 25 and over entering employment. A higher proportion of people aged under 25 also started a modern apprenticeship (18%) compared to 2% for 25 and over or entered further or higher education or training (17% compared to 7% for 25 and over).
Whilst the proportion of people aged 25 or over that entered self-employment (3%) was higher than the proportion of those aged under 25 (less than 1%), the difference proportionally between the under 25 and 25 and over age groups for gaining a qualification was negligible (12% and 11%, respectively).
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