Developing your workforce

Workforce Development Strategy

In 2017, The National Archives engaged the independent research consultancy Pye Tait to carry out an extensive evaluation of the archive sector using roundtables, phone interviews and a national online workforce survey.

Pye Tait used their findings to develop a new strategy, which was further developed with the support of the Archives Unlocked Board. The strategy contains 21 tactical goals that support five strategic objectives and are all connected by one overarching objective:

To develop capacity in the archives workforce to deliver sustainable, resilient and forward-thinking archive services that foster trust, enrichment and openness by reflecting the communities they serve, meeting their needs and engaging with wider society.

Read the Archive Sector Workforce Development Strategy (PDF, 1.3MB)

The Archives and Records Association

The Archives and Records Association (ARA) is the professional body for the archive sector. They are responsible for and committed to working for high standards in providing and caring for archives, and managing record systems, by developing the archives sector workforce through its members.

ARA provides support to the workforce by:

  • setting the standards of professional conduct and maintaining a professional register
  • providing, monitoring and developing training and continued professional development for the current and future workforce
  • providing professional help and advice
  • promoting the exchange of expertise and experience among its members through a community for open discussion
  • identifying employment opportunities and marketing the skills of its members to potential employers
  • representing the interests of the record-keeping profession nationally

The shape of the workforce

In 2015, ARA partnered with the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) to carry out an extensive survey of the UK information sector workforce.

You can download the resulting report, which has identified key areas in which the workforce is not representative of the UK population and has highlighted key areas for action.

Current initiatives

The National Archives also works directly and in partnership with other organisations and government bodies to bring archives together and develop innovative practice.

One of these initiatives, Bridging the Digital Gap, is seeking to enable people with digital skills and from different backgrounds to join the broader archives workforce.