Employers to play bigger role in rating skills training
Ofsted is asking employers to play a bigger role in rating the effectiveness of skills training and education.
The education watchdog's Employer View website, launched on Monday, asks employers in England to lodge their views on training providers.
The site asks them key questions - such as would they recommend a particular provider to others.
The aim is to "increase employers' engagement in education and training", said Lorna Fitzjohn, of Ofsted.
Employers are asked to rate any training provider eligible to be inspected by Ofsted - short in-service training courses in a specific skill, apprenticeships and longer more general courses that give students a grounding in a particular profession or trade before they start work.
Feedback and support
Ms Fitzjohn, Ofsted's national director for further education and skills, said: "Employers in the past have often not been sufficiently included in the education and training of learners, including apprentices, and we recognised that this needed to change.
"The tool will inform inspectors' understanding of the effectiveness of provision, increase employers' engagement in education and training, and help them and employees to choose the provider that is right for them."
Ofsted also hopes the site will help training providers and colleges by letting them see what employers think of the services they provide.
The site prompts employers to fill in a short questionnaire asking them to rate communication, feedback and support from a particular training provider.
Ofsted says employers' details will be kept confidential.
It will be on similar lines to Learner View, launched 18 months ago, which allows learners to register their views on the quality and effectiveness of the training they receive.