Posted on 22nd March 2023
Category: Blogs

This was provided by the The Future Skills team

Subject: Grow your Future Workforce

Good morning/Good afternoon,

We’re writing to let you know that the Invitation to Tender for Future Skills Programme Funding is now LIVE! Organisations have until 10am on 24 April 2023 to submit their bid for Future Skills Programme funding.

What is the Future Skills Programme?

The Future Skills Programme is an HMPPS-funded initiative designed to help businesses grow their future workforce, while giving people leaving prison the life-changing opportunity of a job. We have a cohort of people in prison who are motivated to work. Businesses who already employ prison leavers

consistently report that they are highly reliable, are excellent performers, and have high levels of retention. We are giving organisations the opportunity to train people from this group to fill business skills gaps and provide sustainable jobs for people leaving prison.

Having a job on release helps to reducing reoffending and prevent future victims of crime. Our vision is that, through the Future Skills Programme, we will see more prison-leavers in sustainable employment on release, thereby supporting them to rebuild their lives.

How does the Future Skills Programme work? The Future Skills Programme allows employers to design and run bespoke training to equip people with the expertise needed to thrive in their business. This opportunity is also open to training providers or charities who can deliver training courses to people in prison and can partner with an employer who is looking to recruit people into their business. We’re interested in innovative delivery methods and are open to organisations collaborating with each other to deliver these courses. 

The courses should be between 2-12 weeks and must offer a minimum of a guaranteed interview for a genuine vacancy, and ideally a job commitment, to those that complete the course.

Who do we want to work with?

We want to partner with a wide range of organisations across all sectors. We know there are many sectors with skills shortages and recruitment gaps such as construction and hospitality, and the Future Skills Programme is the perfect solution. We’re also keen to partner with growth sectors such as digital and those in the green economy to help build these skills of the future. Regardless of sector, we want to hear from businesses that are looking to plug their recruitment gaps and who share our vison of getting more prison leavers into employment. Bids can be made individually by employers, or jointly by consortiums of employers, training providers and/or charities.

Why work with us?  

We know that, of those businesses already hiring prison-leavers, 90% agree they are motivated, reliable, good at their job and trustworthy. Through the Future Skills Programme, organisations will be able to work with prisons and get the chance to shape and develop a talent pool that embodies their values.

This is an exciting opportunity to meet the recruitment needs of businesses, whilst also providing life-changing opportunities for those leaving prison. Employment is the best start possible for people leaving prison; and engaged, skilled employees are what industries need.  

Read more about the Future Skills Programme here:
Employing prisoners and ex-offenders – GOV.UK (

How to tender for funding

  • Register your details on the Ministry of Justice eSourcing portal:  The ITT, which comprises a number of volumes, is available only in electronic format via the eSourcing portal. Bidders must register the names of all contacts requiring access to the sourcing event.
  • When you have registered, access the procurement with this reference: ITT 7262.  More instructions on using the portal can be found in this useful video: Supplier Registration Video (  If you have any issues accessing the portal, please contact the supplier helpdesk by calling 0845 0100 132 or by emailing:
  • Familiarise yourself with the instructions for the procurement.  All procurement documents, including the bid specification, details of individual prison lots and evaluation questions, are available to download from the portal.
  • Download from the portal all information about the Future Skills Programme that has been shared to date, including the collaboration list of organisations interested in submitting joint bids.
  • Submit any clarification questions by 10am on 4 April 2023 via the eSourcing portal.  Answers will be provided publicly.

Best wishesThe Future Skills team 

Best wishes

The Future Skills team