We were delighted to welcome so many delegates to our joint SUSE / Apt PSP Conference in May 2022 – our first conference in two years due to Covid. Over 200 delegates, online and at the venue, participated in discussions, had their say in future developments and contributed towards the design of the Centre of Excellence for Scotland’s employers. All towards our shared goal of reducing the disability employment gap.

Screenshot of the Conference video, play button in the centre, with text SUSE / Apt PSP Conference 2022, our first hybrid conference. Background is the conference room and screen.

Click here to see more from the Conference day. 

We’ve put together a Conference Overview which highlights the key topics and summarises what our delegates discussed in the Breakout Sessions. Read more about what our delegates told us about maximising the contribution from people with lived experience of a disability of long-term condition, the development of the Quality Standard for Supported Employment, and the future of the PSP with the development of the Centre of Excellence.

Delegates also explored and developed the principles which underpin the concept of a Supported Employment guarantee.

You can read the full conference overview on the SUSE website here: SUSE Apt PSP Annual Conference Overview 2022

To view the document in a text only version please click here: SUSE Apt PSP Annual Conference Overview 2022 Text Version

Front cover of the Conference overview document, which reads Annual Conference 2022, Conference Overview, Emerging Themes and Key Topics

Our conference theme in 2022 was Partners in Progress, working towards our shared ambition of halving the disability employment gap.

Let’s change the landscape in Scotland, and bring permanent change to business cultures, attitudes and approaches. Thank you for joining us.


It  was a packed agenda!

Our Speakers:

  • David Cameron, SUSE CEO,
  • Richard Lochhead, MSP for Just Transition, Employment and Fair Work,
  • Nigel Patrick, Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, UK Shared Prosperity Fund Presentation and Question-and-Answer
  • Stuart Duffin, SUSE Chair.

Plus! We celebrated the achievements of the employers who were presented with their Inclusive Workplace Award, a particularly special accomplishment as they completed their award during the pandemic. Delegates enjoyed networking opportunities and visited the exhibition area, where ENABLE Works were running virtual reality experiences (at the venue)!

The Agenda:

  • 9am – Arrival for Registration and Workshop selection
  • 9.15am – Breakfast, Networking and visit the Exhibition Area (Expo Booths online)
  • 9.45am – Main Stage Events Begin including Speakers and Inclusive Workplace Award presentations
  • 10.45am – First Breakout Session / Workshop
  • 12.00noon – Panel Discussion
  • 1pm – Lunch, Networking and visit the Exhibition Area (Expo Booths online)
  • 2pm – Second Breakout Session / Workshop
  • 3.15pm – Final Breakout Session / Workshop
  • 4.15pm – Plenary
  • 4.30pm – Close



A regular highlight of our conferences are the Breakout Sessions. This year there were 9 sessions running throughout the day. Our in-person and online delegates were invited to choose which 3 sessions they would like to attend. Read more about each of the confirmed sessions below.

This was your time to contribute! These sessions were designed to be run as workshops, involving delegates in discussion and activities.

ENABLE Works – Enabling Partnerships

A presentation on the ENABLE Works approach to partnership. They will showcase some of their consortium partnerships currently being delivered across Scotland, at a time when providers need to pull together to increase their impact.

We are teaming up with SCLD during Scottish Learning Disability Week 2022!  SCLD will be hosting a panel of employees with learning disabilities who will tell you about their experience of work, followed by a Question-and-Answer session. Our online delegates will be able to join their session and have your questions about employing people with learning disabilities answered.

Flexible Working in the Post-Covid Economy
Who wants flexible working and what types of flexible working do people have? How can flexible working benefit employees and businesses? In this session, led by Lisa Gallagher, Co-Founder and Director of Flexibility Works, you will discuss the key challenges in your business right now and how flexible working might help. You will also have the chance to find out about flex in action!

The Supported Employment Guarantee
This is the moment to campaign for the services we need to ensure everyone has the chance of a working life, if they want it. This workshop will look at a set of principles our members and stakeholders can sign up to, to increase the quality, availability and impact of supported employment in Scotland. How do we make this a reality? Join this workshop to be part of the discussion.

Supported Employment Quality Standard
With the Supported Employment Quality Standard for Scotland, providers will finally have a sector standard they can achieve. This will also give confidence to disabled people who use their services and funders. This workshop is designed for service providers to have your say on how we roll out this important initiative. Please click on the link to read the Draft Supported Employment Quality Standard

Why Employers Should Recruit Disabled People
A workshop with the award-winning social entrepreneur and author, Jane Hatton, founder and CEO of Evenbreak, the recruitment website where disabled jobseekers can be confident that employers are committed to diversity and equality and are keen to recruit people based on their talents and abilities.

Maximising the Contribution from People with Lived Experience in Apt PSP
People with lived experience are at the centre of everything we do in the PSP. But what does the next stage look like? How can we develop our current team and grow this as we work towards establishing a Centre of Excellence for Scotland’s employers? Danielle Farrell from Yours Options Understood (Y.O.U), will invite you to have your say in this workshop.

Delivering a Centre of Excellence for Scotland’s Employers
The Apt’s ambition is to create a one stop shop for employers who want to attract, recruit and retain disabled people. Join Emma Soanes, Chief Executive of Unity, and David Stewart, Regional Partnership and Development Manager at Fedcap Scotland, and help us design this exciting new initiative to make it an essential resource for Scotland’s employers. Click on the link to read the discussion points during this breakout session: Delivering a Centre of Excellence for Scotland’s Employers

Quality Assurance in the PSP
An interactive workshop that explores how the PSP can create highly effective services that are proven to give employers meaningful results.

The Post-Covid Labour Market and Economy
What does the recovery look like as we put COVID behind us? Where will jobs be created or lost and what does this mean for disabled jobseekers and the agencies who support them? We’ll be inviting you to have your say and hear from expert contributors.

Panel of Experts
We are delighted to welcome Marc Crothall, CEO of the Scottish Tourism Alliance, who will be joining us to discuss the future labour market.

Marc is the lead industry representative on the Scottish Tourism Emergency Response Group (STERG) and Scotland’s Tourism Task Force. He also chairs the National Food Tourism Leadership Board  is Scotland’s representative on the  UK Tourism Industry Council  is a board member of Apprenticeship in Hospitality Scotland Hoteliers Charter, Interface and Springboard (Scotland) . In 2020 he was awarded the “Fellowship” by the Scottish Hotel industry for his outstanding contribution to the industry.

Marc joins the panel’s Chair Ian Bruce, Equality Manager at Skills Development Scotland and Deputy Chair of the SUSE Board.

Ian and Marc will also be joined by Dr Marisa Smith, Senior Lecturer at the University of Strathclyde’s Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship and Colin Borland, Director of Devolved Nations at the Federation of Small Businesses.


Thank you to our conference sponsors ENABLE Works, who were this year's headline sponsor, Fedcap Scotland and DFN Project Search. All delegates were able to visit their exhibition areas during the Conference, whether they had an in-person or online ticket.

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