Department for the Economy employment and skills programmes and Careers Service

The Department provides and supports a number of training programmes aimed at both citizens and employers.

Citizen-facing programmes

Detailed information on employment and skills programmes is hosted on the nidirect website which you can access at the links below:

  • Assured Skills training programme (nidirect) - graduate entry programmes
  • Skills to Succeed (nidirect)  - get the skills to succeed and change your world.
  • Training programmes - all current programmes for jobseekers
  • Apprenticeships (nidirect) - an apprenticeship could work for you whatever career you're in, or whatever stage of life you're at. More information can be found on nidirect.
  • Traineeships - key education and skills opportunity at level 2 for people not yet in employment
  • Essential Skills (nidirect) - information on how to get help with your reading, writing and numbers
  • Foundation degrees (nidirect) - find out about the benefits of Foundation degrees and how to apply
  • Skills for Life and Work - Skills for Life and Work is a training programme for young people who want to develop their skills and get ready for work. 
  • SKILL UP - If you’re aged 18 and over and eligible to work in Northern Ireland, a range of free accredited courses are available to help you re-train and re-skill, through SKILL UP – the flexible skills programme.
  • Work experience programme - Get the experience you need to get ahead.
  • Bring IT On - delivered by Belfast Met, the programme's aim is to encourage and educate young people about the career pathways into the IT industry.


  • Study USA - Study USA is an innovative programme which offers undergraduate students studying in Northern Ireland an opportunity to study business for one year at a college in the USA.


Detailed information for employers is hosted on the website and is accessible from the links below.

NI Skills Council

The Northern Ireland Skills Council (NISC) is an advisory body which provides strategic advice on issues pertaining to the development and implementation of skills policy:

Careers Service

The Careers Service provides an impartial, all-age careers information, advice and guidance service, to help young people, parents and adults make informed choices about their future career paths.

Professionally qualified careers advisers are based in Careers Resource Centres, Jobs and Benefits Offices and JobCentres throughout Northern Ireland.

Careers Service information, advice and interactive careers tools are on nidirect.


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