3 February 2015

Traineeships for Industry fill skills gaps as new jobs created

Skills Training UK’s Traineeships for Industry programme in the West Midlands has helped previously unemployed 19-24 year-olds find work and fill skills gaps at local companies, with five of the first group of 11 trainees winning new jobs so far. They include Damian Williams, age 20, who started the training in August and has just been employed by Walsall company Gerrymet as a Trainee Saw Doctor.

We have adapted the Government’s flagship ‘Traineeships’ programme in order to make it more specific to the needs of  West Midlands firms in the manufacturing, engineering, warehousing and logistics sectors.

The ‘Traineeships for Industry’ are being advertised at local Jobcentres and the training involves 10 weeks of industry-related classroom learning, as well as English and Maths. Trainees then do a four week work placement, followed by a Forklift Truck driving course to gain an accredited licence.

Tim Willis, Director of Gerrymet, which employs 17 staff and manufactures and services saw blades and wood cutting tooling, said: “I was looking to employ someone and the Traineeship for Industry allowed me to see the trainee work and see how keen they are. I was really impressed with Damian’s attitude and took him on as a Trainee Saw Doctor. He’s fitted in really well and I can see that Skills Training UK have really listened to what employers want.”

Stephen Crawley, Skills Director, Skills Training UK, says; “We want to meet the emerging and growing needs of engineering and logistics companies, supporting local businesses in overcoming their skills gaps. The Traineeships for Industry and our Apprenticeships training are aligned to the Black Country’s vision for economic development.”

Damian Williams was previously unemployed for nearly two years and only had experience in retail before he spotted the opportunity at his local Jobcentre.

Damian commented: “I’m really happy. I’d never considered doing anything like this before but I’m really enjoying working at Gerrymet and doing something that’s hands on. I can say to people now, I’m 20 and I’ve got a job, which has made a huge difference to my life.”

Other West Midlands companies who have shown interest in Traineeships for Industry and are offering work placements for the Trainees include GJ Simmons and Son, Any Blind Limited, Contract and Home Blinds and Thermotec Plastics

For further information about our Traineeships for Industry and Apprenticeships, telephone 01922 703072.

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