7 April 2016
There has been a major drive to make businesses and organisations in the UK aware of the benefits of apprenticeships for employers. As top training providers, Skills Training UK are at the forefront of this. We are constantly expanding into different parts of the country and work closely with employers of all sizes nationwide, in areas including Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham and the West Midlands.
According to official Government figures, more than 2 million apprenticeships were created in the UK between 2009/10 and 2014/15, including over 490,000 during 2014/15 alone. Many different work sectors are now discovering the benefits of apprenticeships, with STUK working in career areas including Retail Apprenticeships, Customer Service Skills, Business Improvement Techniques, Team Leading, Management and Performing Manufacturing Operations.
Alongside the rise in numbers of apprentices, there has also been a growth in traineeships. These include high quality workplace placements, offering employers a chance to give young people initial training to see how well they fit with the company. Hosting a trainee can help you to decide whether to go ahead and recruit the person as an apprentice, benefiting from the whole support package which is available for apprenticeships.
There are many advantages of apprenticeships for employers, including the following:
There is evidence that employing apprentices can improve the productivity of companies, with recent research demonstrating both short and long-term gains. A research study carried out for the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) found that, on average, each apprentice brings a gain in productivity of more than £10,000 per year for their employer, with figures for some sectors being even higher.
As well as boosting productivity, apprenticeships can also help companies to compete in the modern marketplace. In industry research, 77 per cent of employers agreed that taking on apprentices helped to make their organisations more competitive. Another finding was that more than 8 out of 10 customers prefer to buy from companies which employ apprentices.
A skills gap is currently affecting many organisations and companies in the UK, meaning it is hard to fill vacancies. However, by recruiting apprentices, you can train people to have the exact skills you need for your business, so investing in the future of your business. Another option is to offer apprenticeships to your existing staff as a way of improving their training.
In addition to building a company's skills base, providing quality training to apprentices is also likely to bring benefits in terms of staff retention. A major reason for this is that staff typically feel loyal to employers who have invested in their training, and are therefore more engaged and motivated to stay.
Apprenticeships are particularly cost-effective as a form of training, because young people are making a contribution to the workplace while they are learning. Apprentices spend much of their time gaining skills on the job, and may attend a Skills Training UK centre one day a week or via block release.
Another cost advantage for employers is that, while you are expected to pay your apprentices’ wages, funding is available to cover many other training costs. We can give you detailed advice on how to arrange funding towards an apprenticeship or traineeship.
Once you decide that apprenticeships are right for your business, how do you go about arranging a scheme? As expert apprenticeship providers, Skills Training UK can help employers throughout the process. A member of our dedicated Employer Engagement Team will guide you on how to recruit trainees and apprentices, giving you all the support and information you need.
We can also help you to explore what funding is available. The amount of grant support varies depending on the sector, with the National Apprenticeship Service covering the full cost of mandatory training for 16 to 18-year-olds, while up to 50 per cent funding is available for those under 24. For those aged 25 and over, the level of government funding for an apprenticeship depends on factors including the type of work and area of the country where you are based. Funding for training is usually paid direct to Skills Training UK to supply the training.
Our team will also work with you to construct a training programme tailored both to the needs of the sector and to your needs as a specific employer, focusing on the skills you need in your business. This will include providing classroom-based study as needed. We also arrange assessment within the workplace, which is flexible and designed to avoid disruption to your business.
Apprenticeship training is not only of great benefit to employees, by improving their skills and starting them out on their career path. There are also many reasons why apprenticeships are valuable for employers, and this is why so many organisations are taking them up. Skills Training UK will support you all the way if you decide to join them.
Apprenticeships for Employers – To find out how an apprenticeship or traineeship could help you, click the link or call us now free on 0800 612 6224
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