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NIE Networks sponsor Workforce Summit

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12 Oct 2023

Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NI Chamber) is set to host its first Future Workforce Summit on Thursday 26 October in Titanic Belfast.

A new concept, it will explore employer-led solutions to the current and future needs of Northern Ireland’s workforce.

The event, delivered in partnership with headline sponsor NIE Networks and supporting sponsors PwC, Henderson Group and Workplus, will bring together business leaders, policy makers and educators to share ideas and best-practice. 
Attendees will hear from keynote speakers including Gordon Parkes (Executive Director - People and Culture, NIE Networks), Suzanne Wylie (Chief Executive, NI Chamber) and Marguerite Shannon (Senior Economist, Ulster University Economic Policy Centre).
Keynote addresses at the half-day event will be interspersed with panel discissions and interactive workshops designed to encourage collaboration and the sharing of ideas and experiences among peers. 
Speaking ahead of the event, Suzanne Wylie, Chief Executive, NI Chamber said:

“Access to the right blend of people and skills is one of the most significant challenges facing our member businesses. This Summit is about tackling the issue by uncovering employer-led solutions. More than a forum for discussion, it is about ideas, collaboration and ultimately, solutions. It is a unique opportunity to get all the actors in the process in the same room with a razor-like focus on one of the biggest potential impediments to economic growth in Northern Ireland. 

“As a working population, we are young, talented and innovative but as a business community, there is an onus on us to play a greater role in attracting, developing and retaining world-class talent in Northern Ireland. Doing so has the potential to unlock significant potential, which is what makes this event so exciting. 

“This event is open to businesses across the Northern Ireland; we invite you to come, contribute and learn and in doing so, play your own part in finding solutions which could be genuinely transformative for the region.”

Gordon Parkes, Executive Director - People and Culture at NIE Networks added:

“NIE Networks is delighted to sponsor NI Chamber’s inaugural Future Workforce Summit. NIE Networks is planning to invest around £3 billion over the next 10 years to ensure that the electricity network is ready to facilitate net zero - this includes the creation of more than 1,000 jobs. These exciting roles will be pivotal in making Northern Ireland a greener, cleaner and more prosperous place to live for generations to come.

“However, the green energy sector, like other sectors in Northern Ireland, will need the best skilled talent to ensure the sector and the wider economy in Northern Ireland reaches its full potential. As such, it is incumbent on us as employers, government and the education sector to collaborate effectively and take ownership of developing the talent pipeline. The Future Workforce Summit therefore is a timely opportunity to hear new ideas, share learning and explore concepts to help attract and retain the best talent and we look forward to being part of it.”

The Future Workforce Summit will take place on Thursday 26 October from 8.00am – 2.00pm in Titanic Belfast.
Pictured: Gordon Parkes (NIE Networks); Richard Kirk (Workplus), Louise Black (PwC); Cathal Geoghegan (Henderson Group) and Suzanne Wylie (NI Chamber)