Apprentices keen to head to the office

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As young people receive their GCSE results this week, research from the National Apprenticeship Service (NAS) shows that there are thousands of potential apprentices keen to open the door to the office and step inside the business world.

Nationally, analysis of those registered on Apprenticeship vacancies, the online matching service, shows the most popular sector for potential apprentices is Business Administration which includes jobs such as Accountancy, Business and Administration and Customer Service.  In the South West, the sector now accounts for almost a third of the 2052 South West applications to date.

With so many companies in the region needing well qualified, experienced staff to help them run successfully, these large numbers of young people applying for an Apprenticeship to develop business skills is promising news.

The pool of candidates on the system highlights the depth in talent of young people. 46% of those registered in the South West are 16-18 year olds and all are looking to start working in one of the 180 job roles in which Apprenticeships exist.

Apprenticeship vacancies, where all these young people are registered, is a quick, easy and reliable ‘one-stop shop’ where employers can advertise vacancies and individuals can search and apply for Apprenticeship places.  Since its launch in January 2009, over 100,000 young people have registered on the system.

To help match these talented young people with Apprenticeships, the NAS is currently contacting thousands of employers, sending them a Golden Ticket, highlighting the talents that young people can bring to an organisation and the business benefits they provide to a company. They are also making employers aware that whenever a 16 -18 year old is taken on as an apprentice, the NAS will fund their training.

Iain Wright, Apprenticeship Minister at the Department for Children, Schools and Families said:

“With this week’s GCSE results, thousands of talented and enthusiastic young people are looking for a good job with training. Apprenticeships provide a direct route from which employers can harness this pool of talent as well as ensuring that skills and experience are retained within their business. We are particularly pleased to see just how many young people are keen to put their talent to use in the business world by applying for Apprenticeships to learn these vital skills.”

“Last month, the Government launched ‘Backing Young Britain’ – a major drive to help young people access training and job opportunities over the coming months. UK business will be the Government’s key partner in creating jobs, Apprenticeships, and a whole host of work experience and training opportunities. That’s why we are supporting employers to recruit more young people by funding the training costs, providing advice to employers and providing the online matching service, Apprenticeship vacancies.”

John Chudley, South West Regional Director at the National Apprenticeship Service, says:

“The single biggest asset a business has at its disposal is the loyalty and talent of its staff. However, this isn’t something that can be bought or developed overnight.  It takes time and commitment from the employer to invest in staff development.

“Employers are increasingly realising the business benefits of taking on an apprentice and their investment in Apprenticeships is repaid many times over through increased productivity, minimised staff turnover and higher quality work being produced.”

The Duke of Cornwall Hotel in Plymouth has been running an Apprenticeship scheme since 2001.  Apprentices are recruited into all the hotel’s departments – including customer service.

Jon Morcom, the hotel’s director, said:

“From a business perspective taking on an Apprenticeship is an extremely worthwhile investment.  In addition to the benefits that a well trained and experienced workforce can offer, we also find that our commitment to our employees’ personal development also has a positive impact on performance and staff retention.”

Employers interested in taking on an apprentice should call the National Apprenticeship Service on 08000 150 600 or visiting www.apprenticeships.org.uk.