Established over 15 years ago, Skillsforge was created by a within a University of York research project to address the lack of effective progression monitoring and supervision for postgraduate research programmes. It now works with over 24 universities across the UK and Australia, and is currently looking to expand into Canada, New Zealand and Ireland.
York Science Park connected the team with Make It York and they have now been a part of Skillsforge’s business journey for over two years. They are looking to develop the business with the aim of leveraging their investment against some possible grant funding, the Make It York Business Team were able to point Skillsforge in the right direction and towards the most appropriate funding for their business needs.
Over the past two years, Skillsforge have been supported by Make It York through several successful grant funding applications:
- Three successful applications through the AD:VENTURE Programme. These allowed the business to make investments in small, capital items such a laptops and software and which meant that earlier this year as the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Skillsforge were ready and prepared to quickly adapt in operating the business remotely
- Two successful applications for Digital Enterprise Funding. This funding helped them with their internet and telephony connections as they moved into new offices in the Innovation Centre at York Science Park. They were also able to access support from specialist business consultants during the COVID-19 pandemic to enhance their software solutions
- Qualified for two out of three opportunities offered through SparkFund which has allowed SkillsForge to significantly enhance their product and apply for international standard accreditations such as ISO 27001 and ISO9001 Certifications.
- A successful application was also made to the Department of Trade and Industry’s (DIT) Tradeshow Access Programme which helped to gain essential market knowledge and make new contacts overseas.
Skillsforge is continuing to work with Make It York as it seeks out new opportunities for future growth and development of their business.
Make It York have been able to put us in touch with the right people, and direct me on the right route to grow my business. Through Louise Saw’s recommendations I’ve made beneficial connections with the Knowledge Transfer Network, been offered tailored business advice and been able to expand my business skills on funded training opportunities like ‘Investment Readiness’. If you are a small to medium sized business in York looking to grow and develop your business then you are crazy if you are not making use of a Business Growth Manager at Make It York!