EN:Connect Employment & Skills Forum

EN:Connect Employment and Skills Forum #15 

Wednesday 7 June 2023 

14.00 -15.30 

Venue: Video meeting (MS Teams) 


Meet our speakers

Simeon Perry, Head of Operations, EN:Able Communities

Simeon has  25 years experience in social housing with both York and Leeds City Councils in a variety of roles in housing services including estate management, policy development, service improvement, performance management, project management of IT systems and latterly had responsibility for an area of housing asset management commissioning activity over £100m from both internal and external contractors.

Simeon is passionate about overcoming social injustice and supporting both people and their communities prosper.  Simeon has been chair of a primary school governing body and Board Director of a social enterprise. 

Simeon is passionate about working in collaboration with a variety of stakeholders to produce innovative solutions to support the sustained regeneration of communities in Northern England. 

Lynsey Sweeney, Managing Director, Communities that Work

Lynsey Sweeney is the Managing Director of Communities that Work. She has worked across housing, employment and skills for a decade, with Communities that Work and the National Housing Federation. Lynsey was a director at a central London Further Education College, co-founded the first Apprenticeship Training Agency in the UK and consulted for KPMG on their World Class Skills programme. Prior to this, Lynsey worked for VSO in China, Ethiopia and London

Lynsey will be providing the National Policy update as standard in this session.

Suzanne Jobson, Director, Communities that Work @ Karbon Homes

Foundations for Life Manager at Karbon Homes and Non-executive board director at Communities that Work

Suzanne has worked in the social housing sector for over 11 years, specifically across the financial and digital inclusion and employability agenda. Suzanne manages the employment, skills and digital support team at Karbon Homes, whose footprint covers the North East of England and Yorkshire with almost 30,000 homes serving diverse communities, all facing different opportunities and challenges. Suzanne sees Communities that Work as a driving force to promote and strengthen the key role that the social housing sector plays in the employability agenda and is keen to bring the North East voice to this important conversation.

Alex Miles, Managing Director, Yorkshire Learning Providers

Alex has worked in the FE sector for over 19 years and is incredibly passionate about the benefits of post-16 education and what it can achieve to support social mobility and change peoples lives.   Alex has supported a wide range of training providers, colleges, universities, schools and employers to promote, engage and improve apprenticeship and skills provision over the years and continues to develop & grow the membership & support offered to the sector.   

Alex also delivers a range of consultancy support to training organisations nationally covering areas including leadership & management, quality improvement, audit & compliance, Governance & oversight and acts as an external challenge and critical friend to many organisations. 

Alex is Home Office approved to deliver WRAP training across FE  & is an Ofsted Inspector for FE & Skills across YH & North East. 

Julie Deeley, Director of Operations, EN:Able Futures

Julie has over 30 years’ experience in managing successful programmes and interventions to support local unemployed individuals secure sustainable employment. She has spent a significant number of years developing relationships with employers to secure and generate new opportunities for unemployed individuals.

Julie has previously worked for Wakefield Council and DWP. Whilst at Wakefield Council she project managed Wakefield’s Leeds City Region funded Head Start programme, supporting long term unemployed 18-24 year olds into sustainable employment. Additional experience has also been gained during her time at DWP, having provided support to large employers in the District by understanding needs and demand, and identifying opportunities for Jobcentre Plus to provide recruitment solutions to meet their requirements. She also helped develop a sub-regional CITB Pilot to help provide work experience placements to candidates, leading to apprenticeships and secured vacancies.

Dr Calum Carson, Senior Research Associate, Lancaster University 

Dr Calum Carson is a Senior Research Associate in the Centre for Health Inequalities Research at Lancaster University, primarily interested in the Real Living Wage, decent work, corporate social responsibility and the future of work.

Before his current academic role he worked as a Postdoctoral Researcher at Manchester Metropolitan University, and before that as a Labour Market, Policy and Research Officer at the Employment Related Services Association (ERSA), with a focus on youth unemployment and labour market analysis.

At the end of 2020 Calum completed his PhD on the UK Living Wage, with a multi-dimensional focus on the workers who benefit from it, on the employers who voluntarily adopt Living Wage rates of pay, and the evolution of the Real Living Wage campaign itself.

He has previously worked as a researcher at the International Labour Organisation, Geneva, focusing on issues surrounding non-standard forms of employment and the implications of the growth of precarious work within the gig economy, and on several projects at the University of Leeds.

Within his current role, Calum's research has a particular focus on the employer experiences of active labour market policies, and how they affect how businesses are run.

The Author

Written by Lorna Hadley