In Short ‘Yes’ see the following from the funding rules:
We procure and manage contracts for ESF-funded provision on behalf of local enterprise partnerships that meets local needs. This includes matching the ESF contract value to other similar funding and learners, which we report to the ESF Managing Authority in England.
This means any learning funded by us becomes part of the ESF programme, and the ESF programme rules apply and will be subject to our ESF compliance checks and external audit.
You and your subcontractors must follow the retention of documents, ‘publicity’ and horizontal themes rules and provide evidence as detailed in the ESF 2014 to 2020 funding rules.
I looked at the ESF funding rules, and where it says: “You must maintain original invoices, delivery evidence, management information returns and all other documents necessary to verify the services in relation to this contract until 31 December 2030”, would you think our R14 ILR files would meet their needs in relation in retaining MI returns or would we have to retain all the data that we hold on our systems?
It all depends what records you use your systems for, if it includes electronic records or data for registers, reviews etc. then you will need to retain them in some way. Most MI systems allow you to export or archive your data for audit purposes.