Next Left: A Guide to Engaging with the Labour Party

Labour is preparing for power and has a realistic chance of winning. With an election expected to be held within the next 18 months, this is the most crucial part of the electoral cycle for...

Labour is preparing for power and has a realistic chance of winning. With an election expected to be held within the next 18 months, this is the most crucial part of the electoral cycle for the Opposition. The build-up to an election is when a party can be the most challenging to read. Polls start to tighten, and public declarations are aimed at maximizing electoral support. Behind the scenes, subtler calculations are being made about what might be possible in government.

Under Keir Starmer’s leadership, Labour has made it clear that it wants to be a pro-business government and is keen to engage with business leaders. This guide aims to explore how organizations can make the most of that invitation. Labour's Industrial Strategy, published last September, sets out the party's vision for the role of the state and the private sector in achieving its grand ambitions for economic growth. Business is put front and center as the driving force behind better economic resilience, shared prosperity, and increased living standards.

Next Left Image Next Left Image - A Guide to Engaging with the Labour Party

Private sector investment is heralded as the catalyst for achieving ambitious policy outcomes, such as delivering clean power by 2030, harnessing data analysis and artificial intelligence for better public services, and creating a care service that meets the needs of future generations. With such a vast agenda, the role of business will be critical in helping add deep expertise, hard evidence, and international experience to help Labour hit the ground running quickly.

The next few months are a pivotal period for organizations to engage with senior Labour figures and make sense of what a Labour government would be like in reality. Keir Starmer and his shadow cabinet teams are starting to draw up detailed policy plans for their manifesto, but not much is set in stone yet. Autumn should be seen as a key deadline, with the shadow cabinet expected to present a credible alternative plan for government by the time of this year's party conference.

This report sets out the party's policy-making process and timings, the individuals and external bodies shaping the Shadow Cabinet's thinking, and how proposals might make it all the way to the manifesto. It assesses factors from the dynamics of the Leader of the Opposition's Office to the importance Keir Starmer places on research and focus groups, to the think tanks that 'kite fly' potential policies.

While parts of Labour's policy program remain under development, the direction of travel is becoming clearer in many cases. This guide examines the key priorities for senior members of the Shadow Cabinet, the opportunities and risks for businesses, and how to engage and align. It includes in-depth analysis of various sectors such as Childcare, Education and Skills, Energy, Financial Services, Health & Life Sciences, and Transport.

Next Left Image Next Left Image - A Guide to Engaging with the Labour Party

This guide is only one part of WA's program of insights on how to effectively engage with the Labour Party in the run-up to the general election. WA has already hosted exclusive events with key Shadow Cabinet members, and more are planned between now and the General Election. The analysis of the current Government will also continue, as the Conservatives are expected to be in power for another year at least.

We hope you find this guide a useful framework to understand the opportunities to engage with Labour at a pivotal period, shape the direction of the party's policy development, and align your organization with the Shadow Cabinet's priorities.

To explore our analysis in more detail and understand how these points apply specifically to your organization, sector, and situation, please get in touch by email at [email protected] or on 020 7222 9500.

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