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About us

Work is not everything, but good work can be.

It can be the difference between poverty and a family-sustaining wage; between social exclusion and thriving community; between low-growth economies and successful ones.

We are a not-for-profit initiative, working with employers to create good work and ensure that everyone can access it.

Our vision is of an equitable world of work, where everyone has access to meaningful, lasting employment. We are ambitious about the impact we will continue to make now and in the future.

Why we're needed

Talent is everywhere, but opportunities to access good work are not.

In the UK, the odds are stacked against you accessing good work if you’re from a disadvantaged or marginalised background.

33% of workers of Bangladeshi heritage, 29% of workers of Pakistani backgrounds and 25% of black workers earn below the real living wage, compared with 20% of white British workers

Millions of talented people are working hard to break into jobs that allow them to fulfil their ambitions and improve their circumstances. But entrenched inequalities, limited support and missing opportunities to upskill are restricting people to low-paid, low-quality work.

14.6% of jobs held by women paid below the Living Wage in 2022, compared with 9.9% of those held by men

Young people, women and those from marginalised backgrounds are more likely to be in low-paid and unstable work than their peers. At the same time, significant barriers hold people in low-paid work back from progressing into better-quality, higher-paid work – including employers’ chronic under-investment in training.

All in all, it means that people from disadvantaged backgrounds are more likely to be experiencing in-work poverty than their peers. It’s bad for individuals, and contributes significantly to the UK’s lagging productivity.

It’s time for change. We believe in the power of good work to transform lives, communities and the economy. By working with employers, we can make more jobs good jobs. When this happens, we will have an inclusive, equitable and thriving economy that leads to a brighter future for everyone.

Our history

We’ve grown from a highly successful pilot project, the London Progression Collaboration (LPC), incubated by leading progressive think tank IPPR.

The LPC launched in 2020, aiming to address the progression barriers facing low-paid, disadvantaged and marginalised Londoners by making the apprenticeships system work better in the capital. The pilot project, supported by the Mayor of London and JP Morgan Chase, worked with employers to create new apprenticeship opportunities which supported Londoners into and in good work. We delivered this via a practical support service for SMEs, and by redistributing unspent levy funds from large businesses to SMEs.

Having achieved proof of concept, the core work of the LPC continues to this date, creating high-quality apprenticeships with our large network of businesses and training providers. With the support of funders including Youth Futures Foundation, Trust for London, Gatsby Foundation and CVC, since 2022 we have also delivered a wider portfolio of projects, including the DevelopMentor programme.

The practical insights from and impact of our apprenticeship creation work has been the foundation to influence government policy, from the introduction of the gov.uk levy matching portal to the lifting of the annual cap on SME apprenticeship starts. The LPC has been cited as an example of best practice by the OECD, and we have received national press coverage for our work on the apprenticeship minimum wage. You can read our report on the role of apprenticeship intermediaries, published by IPPR, here.

Workwhile builds on these strong foundations.

Ready to work with us to create a more equitable world of work?

Join the movement