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Talent for Innovation Supports 170 SMEs and Counting

Enabling Innovation hub at NTU continues to support a large number of SMEs to grow their innovative business.

Talent for Innovation
Talent for Innovation hub with Enabling Innovation

Over the last year the Talent for Innovation hub at Nottingham Trent University has helped to place 170 graduates in Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire businesses. As part of the Enabling Innovation programme, the Talent for Innovation hub is able to offer a 20% contribution towards the cost of a graduate’s salary for the first year, if employed by small or medium sized enterprise.

Businesses that have already taken advantage of graduate placements have ranged across many different industries. From marketing agencies such as Affari Media and Ginger Root, food technology companies like Freshcut Foods through to architectural practices such as Peter Rogan & Associates.

Diversity Creative Marketing Solutions hired a graduate allowing them to gain valuable insights into data streams. Si Elliot from Diversity said: "I couldn't recommend the support from NTU highly enough. The team have helped us bring in some great graduate talent, who are now playing a key role in developing our business. In turn we're really proud to be able to offer local roles to graduates."

Affari Media used the funding to recruit a graduate with expertise, which allowed them to expand their services in animation and video. Emma Gleaden from Affari said: "The NTU Talent for Innovation project has been phenomenal. As a smaller business with big ambitions the funding and support we have received has been absolutely crucial for us in terms of growing our team!"

David Harper, Enabling Innovation’s programme manager at NTU, commented, “Identifying, hiring and retaining talent is a key area that smaller businesses need support with, especially when a business is in the process of developing new products and services. It’s fantastic that we are able to assist in their innovation in this way and we’re really proud that we have been able to support so many local enterprises.”

However, the 20% financial contribution for the initial 12 months will soon end, so any businesses deliberating on whether to take advantage of the support should be aware that the deadline to apply is 8 December.

Emmie Studencki, Business Development Consultant in the Talent for Innovation hub praised the benefits of the funded support for businesses. “When hiring a new employee the recruitment and on boarding costs can be high, the grant can be of great benefit and make a real difference to the business.”

People chatting at lab event

Innovation Community Lab

The Talent team also offers SMEs the opportunity to sign up one of their entry-level colleagues to the Innovation Community Lab. A course of monthly sessions lasting 6 months that promote innovative thinking within young professionals. With the next series beginning in January, businesses can sign up now to be part of 2018’s spring programme.

Contact the Employability team to find out more about the graduate placement opportunities and SME support by emailing:

Enabling Innovation at NTU

Enabling Innovation is a three-year collaboration between Nottingham Trent University, the University of Nottingham, and the University of Derby to support SMEs in Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire to innovate. It is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

Enabling Innovation runs a wider programme of one-off events, workshops and masterclasses, as well as provides local SMEs and start-ups with access to University specialists and expert facilities free of charge.

You can find out more about Enabling Innovation and the support it offers businesses on our Services for Business website.

Twitter: @NTU_EI
LinkedIn: Enabling Innovation at NTU
Phone: +44 (0)115 848 8899

  • Notes for editors

    Enabling Innovation will enable us to support businesses to invest in research and innovation; to make them more competitive, and help them to grow and create high-skill jobs with a range of schemes. We will achieve this in a number of ways, including:

    • dedicated technical hubs in food and drink, materials engineering, computing and data, and design innovation
    • innovation management workshops delivered by Nottingham Business School
    • contribution of 20% towards 60 graduate salaries for up to a year, to support businesses to introduce innovative products, services or processes
    • academic and student-led projects and consultancy
    • intensive specialist support for innovative businesses
    • networking and business development workshops and events.

    Talent for Innovation
    Employability Team.

    Recognising that the lack of graduate-level skills, expertise and organisational capacity is a significant barrier to innovation in smaller companies, NTU's Employability Team will work with small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) to design, advertise and recruit student and graduate talent to support in-company innovation projects. Enabling Innovation will support 180 paid internships, of up to one year in length, over the life of the programme.

Talent for Innovation Supports 170 SMEs and Counting

Published on 28 November 2017
  • Category: Business

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