The main recommendation from the Enterprise and Skills Review Phase 1 report was:
"To bring greater integration and focus to the delivery of our enterprise and skills support to businesses and users of the skills system, we will create a new Scotland wide statutory board to co-ordinate the activities of HIE and SE, including SDI, SDS and the SFC."
However the report also recognised the need to have an appropriate analytical function alongside the new Strategic Board to ensure that the decisions of the board are well informed and take account of appropriate evidence. The specific recommendation stated:
"To support the new board, we will review existing data and evaluation functions to further align our enterprise and skills support and to ensure robust evaluation of activity and impact."
The Crerar report on Governance, published in February 2017, also highlighted the importance of the analytical support to the board in ensuring that the board works effectively. It stated:
"Any secretariat and/or analytical capacity to support the SB must be adequately resourced to allow it to perform its core functions of supporting the development of a Strategic Plan and an associated Common Performance Management framework."