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Employability People

Posted By Heather Ette, 23 June 2017
Updated: 21 June 2017

The IEP is delighted to announce the Fellowship of Kevin Browne FIEP

 Kevin has over 30 years’ experience in the employment services sector, ranging from front-line advisory roles through to board level leadership, encompassing a broad range of business development, operational management, commercial and consultancy disciplines. 

He started working in the public sector with the Employment Services and then joined Reed in Partnership when the first welfare to work services were being outsourced to the private sector helping them become one of the largest providers, enabling over 100,000 people to secure employment. He then moved to Ingeus, leading their international growth in the Middle East and Europe. He has significant experience of working with diverse stakeholders, from government ministers, chief executives and directors of large corporations through to third sector niche organisations and has a track record of leading and building high performing businesses in global markets, including the UK, Middle East, Europe and Australia.

 He is currently the Managing Director of Optimize Now, a business he started in 2016 that brings together a number of specialist consultancies in different markets, delivering a range of positive outcomes for organisations, underpinned by the same ethos and goal, “to build capability and capacity in organisations to make a real difference to themselves, their families, communities and nations”.

On becoming a Fellow of the Institute of Employability Professionals (IEP), Kevin comments "To be accepted as a Fellow is something I am very proud to have achieved. I have worked in the industry for many years and I am passionate about the services that the industry brings to clients, particularly those who are the most vulnerable.  I’ve been fortunate to have experienced many advantages that working in the industry has given to me, particularly working on a global stage and to be in a position to share this knowledge and experience with people in other countries to build capability and capacity in indigenous teams that has enabled them to make a difference to those most in need. 

 As we move through Brexit and the trade negotiations that are central to it, it is much more important that we provide a service to businesses and demonstrate the support we can offer to develop their goals in the UK. The heart of the employability industry is in providing a truly professional service and it is important to me that we are seen to provide services to businesses as well as to clients.  We are much better now at professionalising our people and helping them to build relationships with employers and these relationships are much stronger now than in the past.  

The industry has moved forward significantly and the establishment of the IEP has allowed the industry to provide a greater range of services and to be accepted by business much more as a true partner helping them to achieve their goals whether through apprenticeship skills, recruitment or talent development.

My experience of delivering services in different countries has enabled me to see that there is a real requirement for capability and capacity building of both individuals and organisations in the sector to meet the continual challenge and change of global markets, and providing services within business themselves.  I look forward to working with the IEP to help them build capacity amongst provider staff and to take to employers a broader service offer. I hope my network of companies that work with Optimize can help the IPP to develop new thoughts, ideas and innovative solutions for the sector.

I strongly believe that the voluntary charity sector has a crucial role to play in the industry, particularly in engaging vulnerable clients and I would like to spend some of my time working with those organisations providing capacity building support to allow them to deliver even stronger services, take that learning and share it with other voluntary organisations as well.

I would also like to be involved in looking at how the IEP can more robustly measure its value and impact and help promote the IEP to employers as a broader solution for their development and future growth.  

In the current climate, talent is being developed and lost because of contracting models and at a time when the industry is going through a lot of change and faces greater demands around health, justice and skills it is important to look at how we can ensure the talent base becomes more versatile to work across a broader range of sectors and become an exemplar of what we do.

Speaking of Kevin's Fellowship IEP Chairman Scott Parkin FIEP said "Kevin's experience in countries around the world will be a tremendous help to the IEP in delivering insight into how we can develop frontline staff to work across a broader range of sectors.  We look forward to taking Kevin's ideas forward and learn more about building capacity so that we can better support staff, clients and employers together".


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