Staff training

Sector-specific skills and training in Northern Ireland


There are several sources of sector-specific advice on skills development for employees working in a particular industry. Employers can also get involved in helping to influence how training is adapted to match the needs of their industries.

Sectoral partnerships

The purpose of sectoral partnerships is to review and develop the content of all youth traineeship and apprenticeship frameworks from level 2 to level 8 to ensure that all those involved in training are industry-ready.

There are 15 sectoral partnerships that have been established so far, including:

  • Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering
  • Agri-Food Manufacturing
  • Built Environment
  • Finance and Accounting
  • Hair and Beauty
  • Health and Social Care
  • Hospitality and Tourism
  • ICT
  • Life and Health Services
  • Sales and Marketing
  • Business and Administration
  • Childcare and Youth Work
  • Civil Engineering
  • Creative and Cultural
  • Motor Vehicle

Employers are encouraged to become involved in sectoral partnerships to ensure apprentices and trainees are getting high-quality training that provides them with the right skills for a career in their chosen industry.

Read more on sectoral partnerships.

Sector Training Councils (STCs)

Sector Training Councils are independent employer representative bodies in Northern Ireland. Their role is to:

  • articulate the skills, education, and training needs of their sectors in the short and long term
  • advise on training standards required for their sectors
  • work with the Department for the Economy (DfE), employers, and industry trade bodies to ensure that training needs and standards are met

You can find out more about individual Sector Training Councils at the links below: